ramona attended her first playgroup yesterday. it’s difficult for me to make it to things like playgroups & baby story hour because jared takes care of ramona in the morning until he heads up to school at around 11am, but these baby things are always scheduled for earlier. there’s no fucking way i am going to take the baby any sooner than i have to just so i can tote her off to a playgroup or a story hour. especially now that she is going to bed earlier. jared would be spending a grand total of twenty minutes a day with her if i stuck to the universal baby schedule.
oh yes, she is going to bed earlier now. remember when i wrote about the ridiculous fight jared & i had about that? all of his “if you just understood THE ROUTINE” nonsense? well, i prevailed & he started putting her in her pajamas at 8pm. & guess who is now almost always asleep by 9pm?
last night jared came home an hour later than usual & then dragged his feet a bit getting started on dinner. ramona had a complete meltdown while he was cooking. he tried wearing her in the ergo, but it’s not easy to grate cheese when you’re wearing a baby on your chest. so i took over (even though i’d already taken care of her for eight hours straight, & she did NOT nap yesterday) & made an executive decision to put her in her pajamas & sleep sack. she spent about three minutes with her bottle & was out like a light. at 8pm!
i told jared that he better not make a habit of coming home later than usual in order to manipulate me into putting ramona to bed. he was all, “i wasn’t late! i was home at 6:30pm!” but i now for sure that he came home at 7:09pm because i was watching the clock. ramona learned to sit up yesterday & i was really excited to tell/show him. ramona & i even waited for him on the front porch for a while. when i said, “the important thing here is that i got her to sleep. i rule!” he said, “i bet she’ll wake up.” um…you’re welcome? also, she slept straight through until 7am. it’s kind of annoying, but it’s also kind of funny to see his reaction to having the title of Only Person Who Can Get The Baby To Sleep undermined. not that i WANTED to put her to sleep. i wanted to just collapse on the couch with a stack of ginger-o’s & a book, but that wasn’t an option.
anyway, i took ramona to a playgroup. there was one mom there who was lecturing everyone about how to start their babies on solid foods. “the important thing is to give them something so big, they can’t fit it all in their mouth. that way they won’t choke!” huh? “oh, my baby LOVES lamb chops! he can’t get enough kiwi! i don’t bother with purees or any of that BABY stuff.” um, they’re babies, dude. but i didn’t know any of these ladies & i already felt kind of self-conscious because i guess i still feel like i’m going to be outed as not-a-real-mom any minute. like ramona is just a rental baby. i wonder when i’m going to stop feeling this way? so i didn’t say anything. but it was weird when i took off ramona’s hat & know-it-all mom was like, “whoa, what happened to her head?!” i was like, “it’s a hemangioma. like a birthmark. nothing happened to her head.”
ramona’s hemangioma is pretty large. it seriously looks like a great big strawberry balanced on top of her noggin. if it was an injury, it would be a pretty gruesome one…one that i would not be rushing to show off via hatlessness. but since it’s just a harmless overgrowth of blood vessels, i don’t even see it anymore. i had a little moment of smugness, thinking, “i guess know-it-all mom doesn’t know everything after all.”
i did feel weird though, about the fact that every baby at the playgroup could sit up except for ramona. obviously some of the babies were older. a few were a year old or close to it. but there were five-month-olds that were sitting up! technically, ramona was the youngest baby there, if we are going by gestational age. had she been born on time, she wouldn’t even be five months old yet. & of course a preemie is going to be hitting those developmental milestones a little more slowly than her actual-age peers. but when i got her home, i said to myself, “it’s time to teach this baby to sit up.”
i didn’t really think it would work. i mean, you can’t really make a baby do anything it doesn’t want to do. & at first, ramona just fell over a lot. but to my surprise, she eventually got the hang of it & really started developing some balance! within an hour or two, she had gotten so good she could remain sitting with hardly a teeter even while she sneezed! though i did create a bit of a monster in that now she wants to sit up all the time. she can’t hoist herself into a sitting position yet. she has to be placed into one. but not for lack of trying. i tried to lay her down in the boppy to nap & she nearly gave herself an aneurysm trying to sit up. & then she started crying because she couldn’t do it. she is also better able to see her feet when she sits up, which inspires her to lean over for a closer look…& then she over-balances & face-plants. which is always hilarious to me, but it makes her rather angry.