To my 6-month-old daughter,
Mommy wants to congratulate you on reaching this milestone. I can see you’re really feeling your oats now because you won’t freaking sit still for two seconds. Seriously, calm down! I have something important to say to your sweet chubby cheeks and (mostly) toothless grins:
You’re dangerous. I have the black eye and claw marks on my face from your talons to prove it. I want to enjoy this stage of your life, but I can’t when my eyes are squeezed shut as I try to brace myself for your Jean-Claude Van Damme head butts and flailing arms. Your fingers go shooting towards my eyeballs like darts. You scream some type of baby tribal scream then dive head first into my cheekbones. You’re a menace. Thank God you’re cute, I’m convinced it’s the only reason you’ve made it this far.
I’d like to kindly ask you to stop being so hell bent on ripping off my necklace. And my earrings. And my nose ring. And my eyelashes. As you sit on my lap looking down your nose at my necklace, you’re in a deep meditative trance, lips pursed as you use your unruly fingers to grasp my necklace and then rip with a strength you shouldn’t have this early in life. Please, I beg you — get new life goals.
I’d like to clear up some confusion. My hair is not a horse’s reins. As we walk together to the living room, you don’t need to wrap your fingers around the sensitive hair on the nape of my neck with a vice grip. It’s a pain that can bring me to my knees and you’re smiling holding on like a jockey at the Kentucky Derby. At ease baby, that hurts Momma real bad.
I feel like I need to make a couple clarifications. First, when I sit you next to a table or countertop, it isn’t an invitation to clear everything off like some angry CEO in the movies. It’s impossible to have an adult conversation when all I’m doing is moving every possible thing out of your grasp. The other day you grabbed my fork while it was headed towards my mouth and jammed a piece of chicken up my nose. Your insatiable need to touch, chew, and throw every possible thing that exists is mind-blowing. One toy isn’t enough, you have to grab the remote, my bra strap, and knock the coffee cup out of my hand when I’m mid sip. Don’t worry, it’s not hot. I haven’t had a chance to drink hot coffee since you were born.
Second, I know putting everything in your mouth is “baby reading,” but do you have to read absolutely everything within your grasp? By 7AM, you’ve “read” all my fingers, my chin, my cleavage, your shirt, a pair of headphones I didn’t realize were lodged in the couch cushions, and the phone. Take a break already!
Now that we’re being honest with each other, sometimes I wish your drool was made of gold so I could be the richest woman in the world. How you’re able to manufacture that much slobber will remain one of life’s greatest mysteries. Which leads me to the cause of your drool — teething. Can you cut those freakin’ teeth please?! You turn into one of the Housewives of New Jersey when they start acting up. One minute you’re crying, the next minute you’re laughing — I’m just waiting for you to throw a glass of wine in my face and storm off in heels. Your father and I are tired. We need a nap. Please.
Speaking of sleep — WTF with the sleep regression, man? Your father and I are having to use scotch tape to keep our eyes open. A few days ago you woke every hour. EVERY HOUR! I felt like I was being interrogated by the CIA. Your pediatrician said it’s because as you get older, your sleep rhythm is mimicking an adult, where we rouse every 90 minutes or so. That combined with your new awareness Mommy and Daddy are near by is causing you to yell out for comfort. Here’s an idea — JUST SLEEP. You know that drowsy feeling in your eyeballs? CLOSE THEM. You know that sensation that you must drift into a slumber? FOLLOW THAT SENSATION IN TO ACTUAL, BEAUTIFUL SLEEP.
Mommy and Daddy are right here. We love you. But we don’t want to wake up with you every hour like a crazy person, okay? We’re through.
Alright, if you call for me I’ll come running, but in the morning I will not be happy about it!
In closing, you’re driving me nuts. My only survival technique is kissing you until your giggles turn into a slightly irritated whine. When you smile, coo sweet baby talk and reach up to lovingly touch my face right before jabbing a finger in my eyeball, it’s a pure love that will endure anything.
Regardless, let’s get that “sleep through the night” show on the road.