I've been meaning to put out some updates about my son, and looking back the last one was about 5 months ago, but I've been too busy at work to barely live life let alone write updates on my website. But the holiday season means I'm in sunny Florida with a little bit of time on my hands so it's time for a long overdue update.
The last update was when Sidd was only a month old, and a lot has changed since. At one month old the kid is pretty much just this living blob with senses that don't quite work at 100%, at least in retrospect. But slowly things start coming together and once the sight started to work you get him recognizing objects and people. We also had the pediatrician thinking at one point that maybe we needed to take him in to get his eyes checked but a week or so later it seemed ok. Once he was able to see and track things you get some genuine interaction, and best of all some smiles. For a while, around the two month period or so he had some really bad acne, but everyone assured us that it was normal, it probably looked worse than it actually was. And while it's to be expected, his features started to change, but at least for me, it was one of those things that are so gradual you think he's always looked the way he does until you browse some older pictures, and by "older", I mean a month ago. He's constantly changing and it's pretty exciting to see where or what the next thing is.
So let's start with some chronological details in pictures, because over the last 6 months I took thousands of them (I already mentioned in my previous post about the picture taking):
Like I mentioned above slightly after the 1-month mark he started getting some acne, and it looked way worse than it probably was. Most of the pictures around this time made it look like he had some awful rash on his face or something
Amy's mom stayed with us then my mom and dad came to visit for a couple of weeks but for the most part the baby was still doing the sleep/eat/poop routine. That means there's relatively little real interaction and the kid sleeps most of the time.
I wish there was a better group photo for when my parents were visiting but either the Nexus 5 was constantly out of focus or Siddharth wasn't willing to cooperate.
For a while, his fingernails were growing faster than we could cut them, or felt comfortable cutting, and still not having the best control over his arms, he'd usually end up with pretty bad scratches all over his face and sometimes his ears, or even worse, around his eyes. It got concerning enough that we had to put gloves on him. The gloves were pretty hilarious and made him look like he had turkey leg booties, especially when he was asleep.
Remember that Siddharth was almost 3 weeks early so there was always some concern about him gaining enough weight. Our good friends Will and Nancy gave us the scale that we could weigh him with.
At first it seemed he was a bit behind but he quickly plumped up
Earlier I mentioned that he would eventually start recognizing people, tracking movement and smiling, but in the 2nd and 3rd months, the only smiles we got out of him was mostly when he was either asleep or just waking up. Like I said, there really wasn't any genuine interaction yet.
But after the 3rd month, we could get the occasional smile out of him out of the blue
And that eventually got more and more frequent
Oh, we also got him a passport
Note that he's in a Star Trek TNG captain's uniform. The Passport office cropped the picture so you can't see the communicator. The original plan was that we'd take him to Shanghai to visit my grandmother in October while Amy was still on maternity leave, but we got talked out of that idea. The pro was that he was still young enough that he'd be mostly inert during the long flight, but the major con was that if anything happened while we were there, we wouldn't hae our pediatrician, and who knows what we'd have to do.
He was also starting to get a bit more hair
By October, he was starting to track people and look at people who are talking. He's putting together the sounds he was hearing with what he's now able to see. The side effect of all that is that he smiles more
And he's interacting with objects
For a while he wouldn't entirely be able to grasp things with his hands. He can do the motion but not actually hold onto anything. It was around this time that he was starting to actually hold onto things, like a rattle, a toy, etc. Though once he grabbed on, there's no guarantee that he won't smash himself in the face, but he's getting better and better about that. This later got to the point where he became really interested in phones, and I'm sure the bright displays plays a big part in that. It got to the point where we had to appropriate one of our old phones for him to use.
At the end of October my parents came back for another visit (they actually booked their flight when they were at the airport to fly back home from their first visit). Of course, they spoiled him by holding him and playing with him the entire time
When I look back, this was around when I'd noticed how different he looked, and acted, compared to the first post that I made when he was around one month old. He started to look a bit less like a baby and more like a tiny person, and he'd started (probably for a while now) having particular mannerisms and facial expressions. It was clear we could somewhat communicate on some level as he'd start to coo and vocalize a little.
(That one-raised-eyebrow thing in that picture? He's mastered it. Either eyebrow, he'll flash it on you out of the corner of his eye or face to face like he's Salvadore Dali.)
At some point around now we discovered that he could fully roll over, which was sort of awesome but at the same time it meant we couldn't just leave him on the play mat or on the bed and expect to find him in the same place when we got back (leave him as in going to another room, not leaving the house or anything). This was a pretty big change since before you can just leave him and you know he's not going anywhere. There was suddenly a new layer of concern because he'd roll himself under the couch or worse, off of the bed. Another thing that started in November was that Siddharth started day care. In other words, I'd be responsible for taking him to and picking him up from day care. It's not so bad, I really enjoy the time we get to spend together, it's probably good for me to spend the 30 minutes or so of a walk every day and I really like the people who we take him to. It also seems like hes enjoying himself, there's other kids his age that he can interact with and we regularly get pictures of him from day care.
Also since it's gotten colder (sort of), I've been faced with the challenge of trying to dress him appropriately for the weather. Since I work from home, I'm usually completely obvlivious of the weather outside and I usually dress less than I probably should anyways. I've been told that I should double what I would wear for Sidd, but that's not always obvious. Sometimes I think I have enough on him and then take him out in the carrier only to realize that his hands have gotten really cold. Sometimes I dress him down a bit and I wear my big coat so I can wrap that around both of us to keep warm, and sometimes I just put him in a full body suit that covers both his hands and feet
Around the middle of November, we tried to introduce some solid foods. The first time was a mixed bag, as he really didn't know what to do with what we kept shoveling into his mouth. But he picked the whole eating thing up really quickly, and by the second time around he was opening his mouth for the next spoonful before we could scoop up the next bite. A welcome side effect of solid foods is that his poop isn't a gigantic runny mess.
I'm going to include this picture because of the hat and his smile
Another big milestone is that Siddharth started to kind of "talk", like baby talk. Sometimes it's in response to something you'd say or do but sometimes it's just completely spontaneous. The most recent milestone, however, is Siddharth's first plane flight which was to Atlanta to visit Amy's cousin. We really had no idea how he would take it, but I think I was secretly hoping he'd give me more of a reaction, especially during take-off. Instead, he looked like he was mostly oblivious to the fact we were quickly accelerating to speeds of hundreds of miles per hour, and spent the flight asleep. The second flight we took to Florida a few days later was equally uneventful; maybe I should just be thankful because I can imagine that it could be a lot worse.
To sum the last 6 months up, it's been a life experience. I wish I could spend all my time with Siddharth. I wish we didn't need to take him to a day care and that I had the time to just spend with him all day, playing or going for walks, or feeding him or bathing him or whatever. Every moment I spend with him is a reward. Every night, I look forward to waking up (more like being woken up) and having him next to me smiling. Speaking of smiling, and I know I've mentioned it several times already, that's really something special. Sometimes I'd just be watching him and he'd be on his back or on my lap just keeping himself entertained and just start smiling at something, or even start laughing. Obviously I have no idea what could possibly be making him so happy all of a sudden, but when I think about it, it's probably on a whole different level than what I can quantify. His brain is only 4 or 5 months old and he's filled with joy over something that I couldn't possibly comprehend, it's not complicated or weighed down by any sort of idea or concept or motive or anything, he's just simply and purely happy. In some way I can sort of relate to it. Back when he was 2 months old Amy would take Sidd to her parent's for the week, and it was the first time that I wasn't around him. I found myself texting amy for her to send me pictures all the time. And I noticed that it wasn't so much that the pictures reminded me of him or it was that I wanted to know what he was doing, but it was how happy it made me feel just seeing him, even in pictures. Once Sidd became more interactive we got pretty good at getting him to smile or laugh, in turn that would make us happy, which would make him happier, and the cycle goes on. We're so willing to make him happy and smile or laugh that we'd talk funny or make funny sounds or do all the stupid stuff only parents would do. And we'd do it in public or whatever, because making him happy makes us happy. It's really quite something.
And just because I have so many, here's some more random pictures of Siddharth: