Thane at four months

Ask not for whom the baby smiles; he smiles for you
Ask not for whom the baby smiles; he smiles for you

I brought Thane to the doctor for his four month checkup this morning. Statistically, he is doing wonderfully. He’s holding steady, percentage-wise. Thane is 14 pounds and 15 ounces (50th percentile), and 25 3/4 inches long (75th percentile).

At his four month checkup Grey, whom I always considered to be a bonny big boy, clocked in at 13 pounds 13 ounces.

Grey was also born at a pound heavier than Thane.

So to sum up, Thane has grown a LOT in 4 months.

Thane passed his checkup with flying colors. The doctor remarked on how very strong he was. He can stand on his own (if you provide the balance) holding on to your hands in a vise-like grip. He rolls over easily front to back, and frankly is very very close to rolling over back to front. He’s gotten 90% of the way there several times and simply stopped trying when he was on his side. When placed on his belly, he can move by scootching, although there’s no intent on his part to move somewhere. On his back, he moves in circles like the hands of some baby-clock ticking away the brief moments of infanthood. He kicks up his legs and then brings them down to the side. He repeats. Yesterday he turned 180 degrees using this method.

Thane’s gripping and playing is going very well. He isn’t a huge fan of pacifiers, although they will sometimes help when he’s unhappy. But he loves to play with and hold toys. Sometimes in his attempt to reach for something, he’ll knock it onto the floor several times. (Helpful brother Grey will often restore it.) If he can grasp it well, it immediately goes to the mouth. He will hold strongly onto an object once he’s gotten it.

We are still nursing all the time. My pediatrician has given the green light to start adding in solid foods, but there’s no rush. Thane hasn’t started giving me the puppy dog eyes as he watches me eat dinner. He’s clearly thriving on breast milk. Instead of looking forward to each milestone hit, I find myself not wishing Thane any older or bigger or stronger than he is. Already, I miss the little tiny baby. (15 pounds is NOT a little tiny baby.)

Thane’s sleeping is a bit of the good and a bit of the bad. On the good side, when it’s time for bed I go through our bedtime routine of two stories, nurse while mom sings, and placing him in his crib awake. I walk out the door as he watches his mobile and I don’t hear from him again for 5 hours. He goes to sleep like a dream (ha! Get it?!) He stays asleep during the night, waking at reasonable intervals for a bit of a snack and immediately going back to sleep. The other day, we put him to bed at 7:30 and he didn’t wake up for the day until TEN. That’s fantastic! Fabulous! Amazing!

The flip side, though, is that the child DOES NOT NAP. He gets tireder and tireder as the day goes on, but he won’t nap in his crib, or in his swing, or while mom holds him. And towards the evening, he gets understandably cranky. I’d rather put him to bed at 8 or 8:30, but he just can’t be happy being awake then. And he doesn’t sleep unless we do good-night ritual above. All told, I think this is likely a phase and I’ll get him to nap eventually, but it does seem like he lumps all the sleep together. This is less pronounced when he goes to daycare because he sleeps well in the car, so he gets a nap going to and coming from daycare.

Personality-wise, I continue to find Thane a joy. He’s incredibly social, smiling incandescently at everyone he meets. He LOVES to watch other children play. He very reliably only cries when something is wrong (hungry, dirty or tired) OR if he can’t see anyone. He’s extremely good-natured. He “talks” a lot, this happy baby babble that delights my heart. He seems very sweet and good-natured, and possibly a bit less mercurial than his brother.

He already loves to read. Even in the middle of his exhausted evening fuss, he quiets down and pays attention when it is time to read. You can almost watch him drink in the bright pictures, trying to figure out his world.

He does not like loud noises, especially when he is eating. If I speak loudly while I’m feeding him, he pulls off and gives me this accusatory stare. Rubertina at daycare reports the same thing. Also, I am now remembering why I weaned Grey at 7 months. The squirming and thrashing is painful enough in his gummy state. I suspect it was unendurable with opposing biting teeth.

He laughs when you blow on his belly.

Thane is a lovely child. His eyes remain a few shades darker blue than Grey’s. His cheeks are winter-rosy. His skin is exceptionally soft. His birth-hair has mostly fallen out, and after a while of psuedo-baldness, his first real hair is starting to come in, a bit darker than Grey’s. His gaze is arresting — clear and knowing. His smile lights up the world around him.

Thane at three weeks old

First of all, I am tired. Crazy tired. This weekend was, uh, tiring and Thane is still waking up every two hours and Grey is still getting up at sunrise and my husband has gone back to work. That advice about sleeping when your child sleeps? When you have two of them, not only can they tag team you but one of them crying wakes up the other one and then naptime becomes nothing more than your fondest wish.

Ahem.

This is my way of letting you know that not only am I not posting pictures today, I’m TIRED!

But today was Thane’s three week checkup. Let’s look at some vital stats:

Birth:
20.5 inches
7lbs 14 ounces

Discharge: (2 days)
6 lbs 11 ounces

1 week:
21 inches
7 lbs 3 oz

3 weeks:
21.5 inches
8 lbs 14 oz

For your edification, newborns are *supposed* to gain about an ounce a day. Thane has gained two ounces a day since his discharge from the hospital (bringing his weight more in line with his height, and well into normal/average).

This would also explain why I am still sore and tired, since, um, that’s a lot of feeding — both in terms of amount and time. One can only hope that he’ll start slowing down soon!

He already looks really different. His face has filled out and he looks much more like a baby and less like a newborn. How fast the time passes!

Halloween

Yesterday was a big day in our household. We had two big things going on… my inlaws arrived at 2:30 at the airport (yay for other grownups to help out!) and Trick Or Treating. We did not have Grey’s Halloween costume ready to go before Thane arrived (I know — poor planning!), but my husband did Yoeman labor and pulled together an amazing robot costume.

I angry robot!
I angry robot!

Just one problem. Grey refused to wear it. Oh well.

We’d been invited to our neighbor’s house to meet our other neighbors and get all our kids together before (maybe) trick or treating. Given the time constraints, I hadn’t actually, you know, told them that I’d had the baby. I just showed up with him in his pumpkin costume and watched to see how long it would take them to notice. It was pretty funny, actually. It took about 5 minutes. I got major points for being capable of being out and mobile so quickly post-partum. (The new neighbor I met is also pregnant. She said I gave her hope!) I was offered a glass of wine. Amazing! To be able to have an adult beverage! The menfolk took the boys out to get candy, and we women-folk did an impromptu tour of each other’s houses. It was very fun. We also discussed doing some babysitting swaps. Would that rule or what? Anyway, that was a lot of fun!

Thane is a wonderful child and extremely easy to deal with, compared to both my memories of Grey at that age and Grey now. Grey is actually being really good, but he’s very prone to big meltdowns (understandably). He really, really, really likes his little brother. He wants Thane included in all activities and often wants to hold and hug him, which he does very nicely. I love watching that.

Thane’s only issue is that he is apparently nocturnal. I know this is not unusual for 4 day olds, but he didn’t sleep AT ALL for the night hours last night. Moreover, he wasn’t even happy awake, even when he was being held by mommy. No, he was grumpy-awake. (Maybe he had gas?) Fortunately, there were three adults taking turns with him so by this morning, I think we had all had nearly enough sleep. (I, for one, got up at noon. But in fairness to me, I’m also the only one who has to be present every 2 hours or less to feed him, and I took at least two of the “long shifts” with him last night.)

So far, this is all working out. I’m enjoying it, even. I love both my sons dearly and devotedly. I do wish that my eldest was less ‘splodey, but it’s only to be expected. At least he’s currently getting spoiled devotion from his grandparents!

And here’s the littlest one in his Halloween getup:

The boys on Halloween
The boys on Halloween

Photographic evidence of a second son

I was less ruthless than normal in my weeding out process, in part because I’m short on time and in part because… well, what the heck. He’s a beautiful kid and so is his big brother!

(Note that you can click on the image to see a higher resolution/larger version of the picture.)

http://tiltedworld.com/brenda/pictures/ThaneBorn/index.html

We’re home now and doing really, really well. At least, until I have to pull a second night like last night!