There is just something about ten months. Double figures. "I have a ten month old". There is something distinctly "older baby" about it. Does that make sense? It's like he turned 10 months and suddenly he was battling past the baby stage and trying to break in to the toddler stage. I look at him now and I see a little person with a personality. A fantastic personality at that. A messer, a cheeky little monkey, and someone who just wants to eat, explore, laugh and make a mess. I see someone who is excited about life, and isn't that just the most wonderful thing about children? He certainly reminds me of the good stuff on a daily basis. Sure, he is the good stuff.
So what's happening with my little ten month old? Well we'll start with the most important topic will we? Food. My child adores food. I know a lot of babies do, but I've never seen anything like this. He shouts when people are eating on the telly, you can't eat in front of him, he screams "mmmmm" when he tastes something for the first time, and he's even started licking his lips and pointing to his mouth to tell me he wants food.
And he has a great little diet. We give him a wide range of healthy and delicious foods. He rarely gets jars because I make all of his food. They are handy if you are going away or stuck, but it's actually cheaper to make your own food. And seriously more delicious. Billy isn't actually a massive fan of jarred food. Gas isn't it? He makes a funny face and doesn't seem too impressed.
I usually batch cook. I'll make a large pot of some sort of stew, casserole, curry or risotto etc and I'll feed us all for dinner and then pack away a couple of dinners and lunches for Billy. I use little tupperware containers and it's so handy having them ready in the freezer to take out and defrost when they are needed. There is always at least five different choices for dinners and lunches in the freezer. Right now there is sweet sausage and chickpea stew (photo below) with mashed potato and cheese, a mild chicken curry with rice and apple, pearl barley salmon and veg risotto, pork and apple with mashed potato, Spagetti Bollognaisse and some homemade tomato soup for lunches. He loves it all. If I'm eating out or going to a friends house I just pop the lunch box in my bag and it's a healthy wholesome meal ready for him after a quick zap in the microwave.
In terms of snacks he loves all fruit, raisins, yoghurt, grated cheese (his absolute favourite), ham, toast, and lots of other things.
I offer him water with every meal. It took a while to find a beaker that he liked but thankfully we found this Nuby one, and he loves it. See the corn snack at the end of his beaker? I couldn't make that happen if I tried.
As for milk, we're still breastfeeding. It's as handy and great as ever. A typical day would see him having four breastfeeds in 24 hours. One in the morning when he wakes up, one in the middle of the day (at about 1.30/2), and one before bed at 7.30pm. He'll then wake once at night for a feed usually about 1am. There are of course night where he wakes crying hysterically at 4am with teething pain. I once read a blog post by Mind The Baby where she said that breastfeeding was like her superpower and how her husband had asked what would they do when she stopped breastfeeding and the superpower was gone. That always stuck with me. It's true. It is the most powerful soother. Instant calm. Instant happiness. Instant comfort. I am so grateful for this.
Batch cook prep, and the second photo is Billy munching on some cheese, and sneakily throwing some down to his little friend Heila.
As for sleep, it changes every day. He went through a great patch where he would go to sleep at about 8pm, wake about 1am for a feed, and then sleep till 6.30am. He's waking a lot more frequently these past two weeks though. He could wake 3-4 times. Hopefully it's just a phase. I'm assuming it's teething.
Ah yes, teething, it is in full swing and yet my little gummy bear still has no teeth. He looks so grown up now and then he smiles and his little gummy mouth brings him right back to being a tiny baby again. It's adorable. Does anyone else have a baby who didn't cut a tooth till later? I think it's actually very cute. I'm looking at it as a chance to have the "baby" for longer.
The biggest change recently has been Billy learning to crawl. What a milestone! To see your baby flying around the place is an amazing feeling. You do however only get about two days before they grow a fascination towards all wires, sharp cornered objects, radiators etc. I have to have eyes at the back of my head these days. Here is a video of the first time he crawled. Proud Mammy over here.
So now we have the battle of the baby vs toddler. He's very much on the hunt for independence. He wants to do everything himself. He is very, em, "vocal" about things he doesn't want or like. He completely and utterly is a little human being now.
So why is it sad? Maybe it's hard on us parents because as each milestone comes and goes, our babies quite literally begin to move away from us. The little miracle that was once growing in your womb is now, well, wrecking the room. I know I know, I'm terribly witty.
But it's true. More often than not Billy will have his back to me, crawling away towards a toy or object that is just a bit more interesting than Mammy sometimes. It's a hard transition for the parents because while every fibre of our being wants to see our child thrive and grow, a very big part of us wants to stay in the moment forever, protecting and caring for the tiny human that is so infinitely perfect. It's bitter sweet, that's for sure.
And then there are those moment, where your baby just sits there looking up at you, and the look in their eye so blatantly screams love for you. They adore you, you are their best friend, and although some day they will be taller than you, they will still need you just as much.
10 months on, and I'm still expecting someone to pinch me. So truly grateful beyond words to be the mother of this perfect little boy.