Brennan turned 9 months old on December 8. Holy moly! I better start planning her first birthday party! No really, I have no idea what we are going to do for it. I am so in love with this girl but I hate that she is growing up so fast. I know I say that every month, but it really is getting me down. She passed right through that baby-phase so fast. From the time she was little bitty, I have had a hard time getting pictures of her sitting still. She's a wild child!! But she is perfect and doing great and we love her so much.
At 9 months, here are the stats:
Weight: 20 lbs, 15 oz - 75th percentile
Height: 28 inches - 75th percentile
Head circumference - can't remember (I have it written down at home!) but it was 75th percentile too.
So overall, Brennan is consistent. She actually weighed 20 lbs a month or so so she hasn't gained much lately. People think she is older than 9 months still. It's the hair! It just grows and grows. Brennan is still crawling around and cruising the furniture. She's been doing this for a few months now so we are just waiting for her to take off. My grandma bought her a little stroller to push so she is doing a little moving with that. A few times, we have noticed her letting go and standing by herself for a bit. I saw her do it for a few seconds. David thinks she did it for at least 30 seconds (I think he might be exaggerating!!). She is babbling all the time and "talking" back and forth with us (more like yelling). She also started waving which is super cute and I swear she is mouthing "hi" although nothing comes out of her mouth!
She is still toothless, although the doctor said she saw no less than 6 teeth trying to come out. You can't tell this baby is teething. She is mostly all smiles (except at naptime!) and isn't nearly as drooly as I expected her to be. I used to have to change Conner's shirt a few times a day but Brennan is nowhere near as wet! She is still eating mostly baby food and formula. She likes all the stage 2 and stage 3 stuff I have given her. She also likes rice crackers, puffs and bunnie-o's. (She is getting a great pincer grasp!). She has had some tofu from my soup at the sushi place we like and seemed to like that and she likes bananas too. We tried yogurt but she got some eczema patches on her legs so the pediatrician wants us to wait another month before trying dairy again. I'm pretty sure she's fine with it because she has been on regular formula all along, but she just wants us to wait a bit which is okay with me. We were trying to get her on a good breakfast, lunch and dinner schedule but it didn't work well for her. The doctor said that is fine and we can continue things how they are working. There are no set rules and we really didn't want to mess with her good schedule until after the holidays. I'm a little hesitant about solids because she has no teeth, but when we are home for a good stretch of time, I'll try a few more things.
It really is amazing and a totally different experience to see how easily things are coming to Brennan. The pincer grasp is something Conner has struggled with and continues to struggle with since he was an infant. Brennan gets better at it every day with no therapy or help from anyone. Same with the babbling, waving, etc. She's got a great personality too!
In the last month, we went on a 2 week road trip and did a few other things which will come in a different post. Brennan did really well most of our vacation but since we got home, sleeping has been a little bit of an issue. We are working on "crying it out" and she "gets it" after a few days, but then inevitably we have a day when we have something to do and she sleeps in the car or something which take us back to starting over with it all. Hopefully once things calm down and we get in to a new schedule in January, things will get better on that front.
A few weeks ago, some people that I knew in grad school (who married each other) had a bad car accident. Their two kids and one of their parents were in the car. The two sons had the worst injuries. One of them is doing great and making a speedy recovery. The other one had a much worse injury and is not expected to live. Although these are not people who I have really kept in touch with over the years (except on facebook), it has been eating away at me since I heard about it. I'm not sure if it's my nursing background or because I'm a parent or because I have lost a child but I am just so devastated for them and devastated that these things happen. It reminds me of how precious life is and how I should be happy for every day that I have with Conner and Brennan. All kids lives are so precious and it kills me knowing that another one is lost. I know the pain that I felt losing Braedon but it is a pain that never goes away. We think about him every day and what our life may have been like if he was here. He was a baby so I didn't get the chance to see him learn how to walk or talk or play games or be creative like Conner. I never got to see him together with Conner playing and becoming the best of friends. We missed out and continue to miss out on so many things. Conner's life will never be what it might have been. As he has gotten older, it is very clear that he notices something missing. David and I talk about it all the time. He is missing a part of him. I can only hope that Brennan fills a little of that hole although his brother can never be replaced.
I am pretty sure that we got through Braedon's death because we had to for Conner. I know that I never fully dealt with losing him. I just went on and continue to move on because I have to. Before Brennan, I just focused on Conner and what he needed to reach his fullest potential. I research and take him wherever I can find that is the best for him. I probably piss off a ton of people in my way just to get him where he needs to be. I drive him all over the world taking him to appointments. I kept busy worrying and panicking about Conner's future, his schooling, if he'll have friends, if he'll be able to learn, will he ever talk, etc. etc. Then Brennan came and changed everything. I focus on her while Conner is at school, but when she naps or things are quiet, I have time to really think about all that has happened to us and how our life is. I don't know why it is all coming up now but I'm glad it is. It's not healthy to keep things inside so I'm trying to deal with life as it goes. Maybe it's because Conner is doing so well that now I have a minute to think about where we came from. I don't know. Maybe it's all the rude and thoughtless comments people make. I don't know. But I'm learning to deal with it and I'll probably need years of therapy to recover. I'll do what I need to do for my kids, but for me too. At least when I have a few free moments!
Anyway, what I really want to say in all of this is that life is so precious and I will hug and love my kids more each day and remember to live each day to its fullest. My heart breaks for this family and any family that loses a child. It is the worst thing that can happen and I pray that they can get through this very terrible loss.