One year ago today we welcomed our sweet Pearl Diana into our family.
I truly can't believe it's been a whole year. She completes our family just perfectly. Our family just didn't feel all the way "right" until she came along and filled our hearts. We love our little Polly so much!
Pearl is about 16 pounds now. She has four teeth--but instead of getting her front teeth on top, she has her two side teeth, like a little vampire. She isn't saying any words yet, but she can wave, nod, and shake her head and she's working on blowing kisses and clapping, too. She does call Jason "Da" and she is always super happy to see him. She's probably our only child that is a Mama's girl, though. She sometimes will let me put her down and play happily, but most often, if I'm around, she wants me to be interacting with her. I have to catch her in the right mood to try to make dinner or clean!
She's not a super smiley girl--she's very serious and always has a look of intense concentration. She reminds us a lot of Helena as a baby, in looks and personality. She likes to play peekaboo with her sisters and get into their things. She always wants to be on the move. Some of her favorite things are: taking all the recycling out of the bin, playing in the hose in the front yard, taking a bath, digging in the flower pot on the front steps, climbing up the little slide in the backyard, climbing the stairs, and sitting on Mom's feet and crying while Mom is trying to make dinner. She loves touch and feel books. Her favorite foods are buttery noodles, Ritz crackers, lunch meat, any kind of berry, milk, and chocolate.
She's day-weaned, but we're still working on nights. Much as I would love an uninterrupted night's sleep, I'll admit that we haven't tried very hard to night-wean her yet because I'm not quite ready to give up nursing completely and cuddling with her at night. Someday! As long as she's only waking up twice a night, I'm fine with nursing longer.
And here she is showing off her newest trick!!
She's been able to take steps on her own for quite a while now, but this week she made the switch from crawling to walking. I don't think I've seen her crawl at all in the last two days. She's still unsteady, but look at her go--even in pants that are way too long!
Pearl and her cousin Cutler were born just 9 hours apart. We call them cousin-twins. We had to get some pictures of them together for their first birthday! Isn't he the cutest little boy??
So how do I feel now that my last baby is one?
Relief. Regret. Excitement for the next chapter of our lives.
I was so worried that I would really want another baby and be so sad to say goodbye to the baby-raising days when Pearl turned one. We know we don't want any more children, but I was worried that my emotions might take over. I am happy to announce that I do not feel that, even one bit! You know you're done when you are just relieved to move on from the baby phase of life.
But there's still a little regret. Pearl was super easy, super chill, and super happy for the first six months of her life, plus I was still so overjoyed to have her after wanting another child for several years that it was really easy for me to enjoy everything, even the crying and sleepless nights. I did a great job letting other, less important things go so I could just enjoy my baby for those first six months. But then she got much more difficult (I don't know why), school started again, and I got busier. I have not spent as much time just sitting and holding her this second half of the year as I should have. And now that the year is over, I wish I had put those things aside more and just held her.