Camden 11 Months Old

Camden is almost one year old, and I want to remember him like this forever.

This is what happens when your mom decides to use bath toys for your monthly photos shoots but there's only one number one
This is what happens when your mom decides to use bath toys for your monthly photos shoots but there’s only one number one

So happy. So curious. So full of joy.

What? I'm not feeding the dog my chocolate chip pancake.
What? I’m not feeding the dog my chocolate chip pancake.

He is full on walking and toddles all over the place. He also still loves to push things all throughout the house — laundry baskets, toys, stools, whatever he can get his hands on!

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He got his first hair cut a few weeks ago and was very calm and nonchalant about the whole thing.

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I’ve lost track of how many teeth he has. 10? 12? His little grin is looking so grown-up (er, well, like toddler grown-up) and he enjoys using his pearly whites to get down with all kinds of food.

"Who needs Santa when I have Auntie?" SO TRUE
“Who needs Santa when I have Auntie?” SO TRUE

We had a wonderful Christmas with loved ones, and being the first and only grandchild on both sides of the family, Camden got alllll of the toys! He didn’t sleep very well being away from home, and refused a nap all day on Christmas (didn’t want to miss any of the fun I guess!), but was fairly happy all day. He brings everyone so much joy.

Camden's great grandfather
Camden’s great grandfather

We had to rein in the grandmas a bit — between Steven’s mom catering to Camden’s every whine and whimper and my mom trying to sneak hot cocoa into his sippy cup (WTF? NO!), the spoiling is in full swing. But that’s OK. It is our job to make him eat his vegetables and teach him he can’t have everything he wants, and it’s their job to spoil him.

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He seems to be weaning himself from breastfeeding, which I’m surprised about. I thought I would be the one to initiate it and wasn’t planning to for a few more months, but gradually Camden has been nursing less and less and my supply is dwindling. I thought I would be more emotional about it, but I’m not. I suppose because it is happening slowly I’m able to prepare myself. I have loved nursing him this past year, and am so grateful I was able to, but I’m ready to leave pumping behind and not worry so much about my supply. I can also get back to training and racing, which was hard to do when I was feeding every three hours and had to pump first thing in the morning if I got up before him.

Playing in the ball pit Aunt Cori got him for Christmas
Playing in the ball pit Aunt Cori got him for Christmas

Camden weaning from breastfeeding sooner than I anticipated is just another example of his independence and his self-assuredness — things I think will come to define him. It’s funny the way kids come along and teach you so much about yourself.

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I was prepared to be all attachment parent-esque — to baby wear, co-sleep, and to respond to every sound my baby made, but when I stopped forcing those things on Camden and started letting him guide my parenting, we’ve both been a lot happier. From the very beginning — from my labor with him — he has wanted to do things by himself, and while he knows I am there he doesn’t need me the way I thought he would. He hardly bats an eye when I drop him off or pick him up from daycare and he can entertain himself for long periods of time just by studying toys and figuring out how they work. He doesn’t seem to need constant interaction. He is his own person, and even as a baby I’ve had to learn to give him the space to be himself.

While I’m not too emotional (yet) about our breastfeeding journey coming to an end, I am a little sad about his quickly approaching first birthday. We’re entering a new phase of toddlerhood, and as always, I have no idea wtf I’m doing. Long gone are the squishy newborn days when his entire body would fit on my chest. It’s funny how I look back on those times with rose-colored glasses and fail to mention those days were also filled with hours of endless crying. I guess you really do forget.

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I’m a little sad to be turning the page — closing the baby chapter and starting a new one. While Camden will always be my “baby.” he also isn’t. He’s a toddler who will become a kid who will become a teenager who will become an adult, and my joy and heartbreak with each new stage is what it’s all about.

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Growing up is kind of the point.

 

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