Our little boy is such a creation of routines and signals. He is eight weeks old today, and in those short weeks he has learned so much!
“Sleep, eat and poop” is what many say is all a baby is good for. Those are definitely three of his four routines. He sleeps beautifully, sometimes five hours at a stretch during the night. But generally, he knows that in the evening he gets fed, then has some Grampy time. Sometimes a bath punctuates the evening, and more Grampy time.
Then it’s Grandma time. I get him ready for bed, and we turn down the lights, put on a good nature documentary, and snuggle together for a bedtime snack. There is burping and more snuggling, and then I put him in his crib. Sometimes he is already sound asleep. Other times, he smiles at me and closes his eyes. In any case, he knows it’s bedtime, and all is right with the routine.
But oh, you mess with his evening routine, and he lets you know. Amanda kept him out late one night, and he came back all wound up, not ready for bed until he had Grampy time. One night I went to bed early, and he fussed about not getting Grandma time. And tonight, just as he and I settled into the big armchair, Amanda turned off ALL the lights. He let out such a despairing cry! That’s not the routine! I didn’t get my snack yet! He makes me laugh.
His fourth routine is my favorite: awake time! He giggles and coos and smiles at us. One dimple dots his left cheek. His lips and tongue try to imitate ours as we talk and sing to him. He can lie in his playpen for 45 minutes, looking at the toys and patterns and lights in the room.
All of this will change too soon. He will grow up, sit up, stand, walk, talk. He should. He must. But for today, I just want to cuddle him and enjoy this time and these smiles. They are the best part of my day.