Friday, December 18, 2015

3rd in a Series of 12

When I think of Benjamin being three months old, I'm OK with that.  Three months is a good age.

When I think of Benjamin being a quarter of a year, I'm not OK with that.  It sounds so old already!

 Ah, semantics!  :)
Benjamin's weight was up to 14 pounds this month, and his length--to the best of my ability to measure the length of a squirming boy--was 25 inches.  I've given away his 0-3 month clothes and am now in the process of beginning to give away his 3-6 month outfits.  Some of them still fit, but some are too small.  Onward to 6-9 month clothes!
I had nursed Benjamin right before this photo shoot, wanting him to be happy and relaxed as I took his pictures.  He was relaxed all right.  ;-)  I wasn't really going for the sleeping baby look, so I gently awoke him, but then he was a serious little guy, so I didn't get much in the way of smiles from him when I was pointing the camera in his direction.  He really does smile quite a bit--not that these pictures prove it though!
Not only does Benjamin smile, he also has begun to laugh; and the person who is the best at getting laughter from him is his daddy.  :)  A couple of times, Jeff has been playing with/tickling Benjamin and has been rewarded with the delightful sound of baby laughter.  I, on the other hand, get nothing from Benjamin when I try to make him laugh.  Humph!  ;-)
Benjamin is delighted by ceiling fans.  When I lay him on the changing table, I often turn on the fan in his room so he can watch it spin while I change him; and when I lay him on my bed to play or in the living room on his playmat, I usually turn on the fans in those rooms to the lowest speed, and he seems to like that a lot.
The other day, I was sitting in the rocking chair in my room, and Benjamin was sitting on my lap.  Jeff and some of the kids were on the bed, and Moriah was holding a flashlight which was turned on.  As she moved it around, the light flashed on the ceiling in different places; and Jeff noticed that Benjamin was following it.  I wouldn't have seen that since Benjamin was facing away from me, but I was glad that Jeff pointed it out, and we tested it to make sure that Benjamin was indeed consciously following the light.  Sure enough, he was.  It was almost as much fun as a cat chasing a laser beam!  ;-)
Benjamin's dry skin has still not gone away completely, although his scalp is better than it had been.  Now he has some really dry patches on his legs and smaller ones on his arms, but I suppose they'll eventually go away, too.  I think along with losing most of the cradle cap on his head, he has lost most of his hair, too!  When I look at his 2-months post, he definitely has a lot more hair than he does right now.  These 3-month pictures make him look almost bald, even though he's not quite that hairless in real life.  ;-)  And, by the way, the little spot on his left eyelid is a place where he scratched himself.  I do my best to keep his fingernails trimmed, but they always seem to be so sharp!  That spot is gone by now, and I'm grateful that baby skin heals quickly.  :)
The biggest challenge with Benjamin during this past month has been an occasional crying spell that goes on and on and is difficult to get him out of.  The worst was on Thanksgiving Day.  Shortly after we arrived at my brother David's house, we were getting ready to eat; and then Benjamin started crying and WOULD NOT STOP.  He refused to nurse, wasn't comforted by me holding him and rocking or walking around or singing to him or anything, wasn't happy when I laid him down, etc.  NOTHING was working to calm his crying, so I spent a good chunk of time upstairs in my brother's house, listening to Benjamin cry and wondering how well his wails were penetrating the floorboards to the ears of all who were eating Thanksgiving dinner in the dining room below me!  Eventually, of course, he stopped, and Thanksgiving went on as normal; but a couple of times since then, he has gotten started with periods of crying like that--though none has lasted as long as the Thanksgiving one did.  The most recent episode like that was solved fairly quickly when I got the idea to give him a bath to see if that would soothe him, distract him, and break him out of the cycle of crying when nothing else would.  Sure enough, that did the trick!  It really makes a mom feel helpless, however, when she can't calm her baby by holding or even nursing him.  We've never had a colicky baby, but these recent crying jags of Benjamin have helped me realize how very difficult it would be to deal with that.
As far as sleep, Benjamin isn't totally great at it, but isn't terrible.  I believe there have been three nights in which he's had about a seven-hour stretch of sleep; but that's all--only three nights.  Most of the time, he wakes once in the night to eat, then goes right back to sleep; and that's certainly not awful!  Once in a while, he's awake a second time, and that feels hard when I have to sleepily stumble out of bed to nurse him twice in one night.  If I got a nap every day, I don't think it would feel so challenging; but daily naps just don't happen for me--life is way too full for that!  Speaking of daily naps, Benjamin is still at the stage of being able to sleep in lots of different places.  I do try to make sure at least one of his daytime naps is in his crib; but other than that, he also falls asleep sometimes in his carseat, on his playmat, in the swing, in my arms, etc.  I know the days are coming when his naps will be a little more regular; but for now, I'm not worried a bit about it.  As I mentioned in his two-month update, he doesn't consistently self-soothe by sucking; but a few times recently, I've seen him sucking on his fist and, a time or two, even on the corner of a blanket that he managed to grab and stick in his mouth.  (Don't worry: I don't put blankets on him in his crib.  These incidents happened when he was, for example, in his carseat and had a blanket on him then.)  :)
Benjamin is so very dear to me.  This month, I especially love...

...when I lay him down on the changing table, and he throws his hands up over his head like a referee signalling a touchdown and stretches his body.

...when I'm nursing him, and his hand grabs my finger and holds tight.

...a certain little grunt he sometimes makes before latching on to nurse.

...and, most of all, the familiar feel of him in my arms.  He fits.

~ The first in the series is here, and the second is here.  Looking back to his one-month pictures makes me realize how much his appearance has changed since then!  


Emily said...

He is such a dear sweet little boy. I wish I could give him a snuggle!

Anonymous said...

He's growing so fast! He is so cute! :)