Six months is a good run, right? No judgment if I leave her with wolves? She’s clearly feral. A tiny, feral beast.

I kid, I kid.

My little baby turned six months old yesterday. I spent the morning looking over birth photos and marveling at how much she’s grown. At her smallest, she was 5lbs 11oz and now she’s a roly-poly 18lbs squish. She sat up straight at five months, rolled over from back to front and back again with the help of her cousin on Christmas Eve, she has amazing hand-eye coordination and motor skills, and she has the most captivating smile. She’s added in a little nose crinkle recently that melts me.

It’s amazing, looking back on ultrasounds. I can’t believe that a year ago, she was still inside of me, hardly big enough to notice but with perfectly formed little parts. We had an ultrasound done exactly six months before she was born. We were able to see that we’d be having a girl even though I was less than 14 weeks pregnant. Six months after that, she entered the world in a dramatic fashion that I will never forget. And today, she is her own little person with such a big personality that brings immeasurable joy to our lives. It’s hard to remember life without her now.

I was hoping that her half birthday would be more celebratory – we’d wake up and she’d have her first solid foods, we’d go to the park as a family and hit the swings (she LOVES baby swings), we’d do a little six month photo shoot with the Chewbacca doll to track her growth, and we’d have lots of nice family memories on what feels like her first milestone birthday. Our little peanut’s been sick for a week though, so instead we found ourselves at the pediatrician’s office after we’d already been to the ER and Pediatric Urgent Care in the days leading up to yesterday. She’s at the tail end of her illness now but decided to go out with a bang – two bad ear infections. Maybe it was perfect timing after all though – we’ve been reminded of how difficult parenting can be, and with that we’ve been reminded of all of the rewards. Every tiny smile feels like the biggest victory. Hearing her laugh today nearly made me cry. I feel with a depth and intensity I didn’t know I was capable of. At times, it’s overwhelming. I can’t begin to imagine how this love will grow and change as she gets older and interacts in new ways – talking, kissing, hugging..! I can’t wait.

6 months

If you read this entry, you may be wondering what’s up with Nonnie. I’m happy to report that her stubborn Italian-ness has pulled her through once again. This is the second time in about ten years that doctors have told us she’s on her deathbed, and the second time she has swiftly surpassed all expectations.

Nonnie was released to a rehab facility where she stayed for a little while to regain strength and undergo physical therapy. For awhile, we thought she may be there longterm. She  met and exceeded all of their goals for her though and was released around Christmas. Unfortunately she’s in a retirement home rather than her home, but that’s due to family drama rather than poor health. It seems that in difficult times, people really do show their true colors, but let’s leave that drama aside for now. The important thing is that Nonnie’s alive and well and pushing toward 100. We’ll all do our best to make sure that wherever she is, it feels like home.

My plan has been to wait until Christmas to tell my family. Through a series of unfortunate events, everyone now knows!

My grandmother had a very bad accident happen right before Thanksgiving. When she was due to be released to a rehab facility, they found internal bleeding so she’s still hospitalized. She’s 91 (92? I’m a bad granddaughter) years old and was told she could either choose to die or have surgery with a 50/50 chance of success. She chose the surgery and is now waiting awhile for the bleeding to slow down. In the meantime, the family is saying their goodbyes just in case.

I live in San Francisco, she lives in Virginia. I can’t make the trip right now so I decided I’d call and say my goodbyes and tell her about the baby. We have a big family though and people are always there, so I had to call my dad first and tell him so that he could get her alone in the room.

That was my first mistake – I didn’t know I was on speaker phone, so now his wife knows.

My mom has known for a couple of weeks, so I called to let her know that I told Nonnie, dad, and accidentally told step-mom. Mistake number two! She emailed me to ask how it went but she accidentally replied-all to an email that was sent to me AND my three siblings (it’s ok, Mom! I’m not mad!).

She recalled the email but it still had gone through to me and had all of their emails on it. I assumed it went to them as well so I called so they could hear it from me rather than email.

While on the phone with my sister Erika, I got a text from my brother Aaron that said “STOP!” – apparently they HAD been recalled and only me and Aaron had gotten it because our mail apps were open. It was too late though – I’d already told Erika!

My other brother Johnny, who hadn’t gotten the email, called me while I was on the phone with Erika. I put her on hold and then merged the calls. She thought I must’ve told him in the FIVE SECONDS it took to merge the call, so when she heard him say “hi” she shouted “WE’RE GOING TO BE AN AUNT AND UNCLE!”

I hadn’t told Johnny yet though and he thought it was me saying that (Erika and I sound the same on the phone) and thought Aaron had gotten HIS girlfriend pregnant, so the next five minutes were spent backpedaling and explaining.

So now my dad, mom, step-mom, Nonnie, sister, and both brothers know almost a month ahead of time. I feel weird and exposed and anxious about the whole ordeal. I really wanted to do this in my own time. I’m glad my Nonnie knows in case something happens, and it is nice for the family to have some good news during this hard time.