You are an infant no more, my little Quince. A whole year old, and it shows. In this last month your cognition has just blasted off; you socialize, you sneak, you psych me out, you watch and mimic, you climb and dance and wave goodbye. You give kisses. You have thoughts, and you communicate them.
An example: you have always occasionally awoken at night. Not every night, and usually just once. I would nurse you back to sleep, no big deal. But suddenly this month your brain seized upon milk as an award given for crying at night, and for a week straight, you were waking at least 3 times a night. I decided to night wean, but I was useless at comforting you without milk. It just made you furious. So your dad had to take over night duty. The first time he went in to bounce you, you kept crying, pointing at the door (“I want Mom”). Finally you were so tired, you gave up, lay your little head on his chest, and pointed to your crib (“I’m ready. You can put me back there.”)
You sign ‘more’ and have made word-like noises (so hard to know what’s a coincidence and what’s a legit first word. Possibly ‘banana’, ‘ray’ for raisin, and ‘mama’ and ‘dada’) but pointing is definitely your preferred method of communication. Or more specifically, scream, eye contact, point, and scream again for emphasis.
You love playing what Junip calls “share/no share”, where you offer us food, then snatch it away when we try to nibble. Your other pastimes include attempting to climb the stairs, attempting to splash in the toilet, attempting to unplug various small appliances, and attempting to empty the book bin/laundry basket/shoe rack/toy shelf. You like to throw food on the floor and then grab my hair with your saucy little fingers when I bend over to pick it up. You love music so much, it’s hilarious. Anytime June grabs a noise-making toy, you came barrel crawling across the room, shrieking and pointing, then bouncing and waving the toy when she hands it over. Your joy is contagious.
I still find myself occasionally dumbstruck, looking at you and your sister and realizing what incredible, impossible luck I’ve had, that these two amazing little people came out of my body, that you are mine and I am your mother. I sincerely enjoy your company; you are wonderful and funny and sweet and soft and squirmy, and I love you so, so much. Happy birthday, munchkin.