Gus is 359 days old today and you know what that means: Birthday party next weekend!
Becky and I have been sending out invitations to family and friends and are looking forward to showing off our little boy to everyone. Many of them haven’t seen Gus since a few days after his birth, so they will be all smiles and ooohs and aaahs when they see how he’s grown.
He’s scooting around the house on his hands and knees, chasing the dog and laughing (when he’s not insisting Becky or I take his hands so he can walk around the house like a drunken sailor).
He has four teeth coming in -- two on the top and two on the bottom.
Though he hasn’t put any syllables together to form a word, he is trying and trying hard and sometimes it seems to almost make sense.
He’s pointing with his little index finger at things he wants, giggling for no apparent reason, handing us books he wants us to read to him, standing for few seconds on his own and flicking light switches.
Gus’ grandpa bought him a little pushcart and he races around the driveway, pushing it as fast as his little feet can keep up to the force of his arms, before spilling onto his knees and struggling back to his feet to push some more.
Gus scurries around the house, looking back to see if we are chasing him, chuckling and gasping in excitement when we grab him by the ankle.
He’s gotten so capable on his
He’s also been pushing back at us when we do something he doesn’t like, such as trying to get him into the car seat or into the stroller. Then his body goes as rigid as a piece of steel, he gets all red and starts to scream. We’ve learned to have something interesting on hand -- a stuffed toy, a book, a squeeze pouch of pureed food -- to divert his attention long enough to get him strapped in.
Nights and naps are still problematic. Sometimes he naps for only 30 minutes, sometimes for two hours.
On Thursday morning, on the way to play group, he fell asleep 10 minutes before we arrived. When Gus goes down, I am absolutely not going to wake him up. Instead, we drove around for two hours before pulling into the driveway with my bladder screaming and him yawning and smiling.
At night, he sleeps well, though he often wakes up at about 3 a.m. and Becky has to go into his room and nurse him for 20 or 30 minutes. Then she carries him into our room and puts him into the crook of my arm before she stumbles off to sleep in the spare bedroom.
Though he’s restless following the hand-off, we both soon drift off into deep sleep, his body snuggled against mine. I can’t really say what he is feeling when he rests his head on my chest, but I know how I feel -- blissed out.
Who is this little man Becky and I have brought into this world? And how did we ever live without him?
Yes, it’s not always easy, but it’s always amazing, incredibly rewarding and so exciting.
And next week we get to celebrate one year of Gus bringing all this wonder to our lives.
Bob Audette is the day managing editor at the Brattleboro Reformer and proud father of Gus. You can reach him at 802-254-2311 ext. 160 or firstname.lastname@example.org.