I guess it's kind of official. We have 4 big kids. I'll withhold my sobs for a more private time. In the past few weeks, baby girl has graduated from, well, my baby, to one of the big kids. While this has been influenced somewhat by our new pregnancy, I think she's made the move mostly on her own.
It started not long after her first birthday. She weaned from breastfeeding. Almost entirely cold turkey. Brutal. Her independence was written all over her face when she refused to breastfeed and reached for her cup instead. She also started picking up her fork and actually uses it to eat (sometimes). Who is this kid? She's a tiny toddler.
She also graduated into clothes that, for the most part, weren't defined by her age in months, but by the year. 1T clothes break my heart. I'm never ready for the idea that she's not tiny, but grown big enough that she'll be the same size for the bulk of the year.
The next thing that happened pleasantly surprised me: She started to walk. A few steps here and there. A shuffle from one piece of furniture to the next. Then, finally, full on walking. She still crawls once in a while, but she prefers to walk everywhere with her cute robot zombie swagger. Her older brother started walking the day she was born, so the fact that she's months ahead of when each of her siblings started walking kind of blows my mind. She has also started to dance, which is pretty adorable.
On top of all of this, she's actually started talking. Not just words, but sentences. She's been working on "I love you" for a while, partially because her siblings shout "I LOVE YOU DADDY" at the top of their lungs while we watch him go off to work everyone morning. Beyond that, she's started making simple sentences like "want up" or want down" or my favourite, "want that" which can mean anything.
The fact of the matter is that around this time in each of the other kids' lives we were mere months away from meeting the next baby. In baby/big girl's case, she's got more than half a year to keep on growing. She won't be potty trained or anything, but it'll be a world of difference for me to see how big she really is next to the new baby over 30 weeks from now. I'm so glad I'm not watching all of her milestones under the haze of late pregnancy. My belly is still very small, so I'm still able to pick her up, enjoy her, cuddle with her. So while she's not a baby anymore, she can still be my baby for a little while longer.