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The past two months have been filled with events, issues, and of course, changes for Caleb. The changes have not been major, but are small differences that show he is tapping into different facets of his personality. He continues with his growth physically and cognitively. His understanding is always growing to include more. Instead of being able to carry out a request that only involves his immediate area, he can now go into another room and come back to complete the task, such as getting a diaper for his diaper change. Caleb has also become quite the little helper. I was fixing breakfast one morning and I saw him bent over, his blanket underneath him. He was scrubbing away at a spot on the floor. So, I gave him a wet paper towel and let him go at it. That same morning he put a pot holder away without me asking. I have never asked him to do that before and I didn't know that he knew where to put them. Later that day after Keith got home, we saw him running down the hallway with his daddy's shoes. He knew they were supposed to go in our room, so he put them there. So, I've put him to work. He now helps me put groceries away, put laundry in the washer, and we have a toy clean up session before bed each night. I have been thrilled with how eager he is to help. He seems to get such a sense of accomplishment from it and I am more than happy to encourage it.
Caleb has also shown an increase in decision making ability. He can look in the refrigerator and, to an extent, pick out what he would like to eat. One day, before I had realized his new ability, I had opened the refrigerator to see what to make for lunch. Caleb reached in a grabbed a container of leftover carrots. I just knew he couldn't actually want those, but he was adamant. So, I cut them up and he ate them with joy. A year ago they made him gag! This has its pros and its cons, but I am enjoying his ability to express his preference.
He has begun to mimic what we say as well as what we do. He likes to comb his hair and put on his shoes. He'll even rub his hands together to wash them. I love how he soaks up everything around him. It can be surprising what he takes in when I don't even realize he's paying attention. He will even try to repeat what we say. At first, it still sounds like nothing but gibberish, but when you listen closely, you can distinguish something that sounds like English. He says "Where did it go" and "It's you." He says some others, but I can't think of them right now.
There has been a new growth in his emotional development, the understanding of fear. Really, it is more of an understanding of danger and that not all situations are safe and that not everyone provides the same security as mommy and daddy. Although, this comes with knew challenges for both Caleb and for us, such as visits to the nursery, I am happy to see it arrive. This isn't because I want him to be afraid or to cling to me and Keith all of the time, but it is a time for him to develop caution that provides safety for now and when he gets older. It is a time for Caleb to grow in facing fears while being able to depend on the security we provide. I see an opportunity to strike a balance between caution and facing one's fears that will stay with him when we no longer provide that security. So, for now, we are walking that line of showing him that not all things are scary, but sometimes it's okay to be afraid.
Caleb has stayed busy in other ways besides growing. He's had events, visitors, and some not so great days too. Right now, he is working on some new teeth. This is never pleasant and has caused some sniffles and grumpiness. However, I hope to have something to show for it soon. At the 19 month point we got our first experience with croup. In fact, our Easter was, well, croupy. Caleb has had several bouts with sickness, but this was a little different. It wasn't just the sniffles and a fever, this was horrible, as I'm sure many of you know. The coughing fits were terrible and made him gasp for breath and it came complete with a raging fever. The first fit came late at night and was very scary. That night, I slept sitting up in a chair with him on my chest so that we could sleep. I know I got more sleep in that chair than I could have in my own bed that night. Recovery was slow, so we were still dealing with the remnants on Easter weekend, but we were still able to do a small Easter egg hunt that he had no interest in at all.
It hasn't all been bad, though. We've had some great celebrations, one of which brought some special visitors. On May 1st his Gramma graduated with her Bachelor's Degree. We actually took him to the ceremony, which stressed me out at first. However, I left the ceremony thinking how great it was that we took him. He enjoyed the singing during the first part and watching all the graduates walk into the auditorium. I let him run around the lobby during the "speech" which was nice because it got me out of having to sit through it. He went back in to see his Gramma walk, which was special. More than anything else, he enjoyed listening to all the celebration as everyone got their diploma. He didn't even mind the blow horns. He laughed and clapped and just had a lot of fun. That weekend he spent time with his Grandnana and Twodaddy who had come to see mom graduate. It was so great to see him have fun with my Nana's silliness. And he loved playing with his new trains and with his Twodaddy. Aunt Mindie and cousins, Laycie and Torrie, dropped by as well. Caleb really enjoys his cousin Laycie and Torrie is always so sweet.
While I was writing, he took a tissue, wiped his nose, then threw the tissue away - I love it!
Anyway, today, we went to his cousin Thrasher's 1st birthday party. It's hard to believe that he is already a year old. He is so sweet and cuddly. I hope that Thrasher stays around so that he and Caleb can be good buddies. Kevin and Jessica are two really wonderful people and have taken this little guy into their home and showered him with all that he needs. I know that even if he doesn't stay all the love and care they have poured into him with stay with him. We were so very happy to celebrate this day with him, he is such a sweet little blessing!
Hopefully, I won't wait so long to write the next post. I know I'll have a lot to share and a lot of pictures!
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