This week marked seven months since Gabriel’s birth.
Since the term, “infant” has connotations of a newborn who cannot accomplish anything beyond nursing, sleeping, crying, and lying where placed in my mind, I no longer feel comfortable with referring to him as such. Gabriel continues to make progress in terms of sitting unassisted, eating, and scooting or rolling across the floor. Now J.R. and I must be careful about what we leave even remotely within his reach. Gabriel’s sense of humor is developing as well, even if he thinks that most things that J.R. or I do are rather amusing. Gabriel loves his aunts, Miriam and Faustina, it excites him just to see them – and his Uncle Thomas is pretty great as well. He has developed a distaste for strangers, at least those who take more than a general interest in him, as well.
Life with Gabriel is wonderful overall. Seven months really is a great age. He naps well most days, and his night-sleep habits are manageable. J.R. is becoming more confident in his role as father. And being a mother? I can say honestly that it is probably the role that I fill most naturally in my life. My role as a wife was not difficult to adjust to, but being a mother is somewhat more instinctual. Probably the most difficult aspect of motherhood these days is learning how to balance all of the household duties along with my motherly duties. Gabriel is not difficult to watch, but he can be rather time-consuming. This is a fact that anyone who has taken care of a baby all day, every day, while simultaneously attempting to accomplish other tasks understands completely. I think that J.R. has a somewhat more difficult time grasping exactly what my life as a stay-at-home-mom entails however, as usually he interacts with Gabriel as “the daddy who as been at work all day and wants to spend time playing with his son before bedtime.” Without having lived it, I would have found it hard to believe that it could actually take up the better part of one’s day just caring for a baby and meeting other basic needs without wasting a fair amount of time. Now I know it to be a fact.*
In all the little “adjustments” that come along with being a parent, I recognize that there is room for both personal and spiritual growth within my own life, not to mention all of the fun that goes along with spending so much time with a seven-month-old.
* I decidedly do not allot my time perfectly, however. I recognize that there is room for vast improvement in my time-management practices.