Part of me wonders where the past four months have gone, and another part doesn’t remember a life without Zach in it. My little guy is a four-month-old chubby little ball of fun right now, and he’s a blast to have around. We started our week with Zachary’s four month checkup, and we were curious how he compared in size to nig brother Jack at this age. Shortly after he was born, we lovingly nicknamed Jack our “Freakishly Large Baby.” (He started at 10 lbs. 5 oz., and just kept going. Now he’s a 2-year-old who looks like a 4-year-old with a toddler face.) Zach now officially qualifies for membership in the FLB club. I guess I just don’t have small boys.
Zachary weighed 19 lbs. 5 oz., which is in the 98th percentile, and is 26 3/4 inches long. Both are a little smaller than Jack at this age, but Jack had a 1+ pound head start. Once again, I have a healthy, proportional baby, but just with the proportions of a much older baby. I guess this explains why his size 12 month clothes fit so well. Everything else checked out well, and he got two shots, which he took like a champ. Much better than a certain four-year-old handled the shots he got with his checkup on the same day: it took two nurses and me to deal with Max. That kid is stronger than he looks, and LOUD!
Back to my little guy: I’ve had several people comment how much more alert Zachary seems lately. We can tell his eyesight is getting better and he can see far away. He is making eye contact and engaging people from across the room now, and has had some flirt fests with people sitting a few rows behind us in church. He watches his older siblings constantly. I think he’ll be really happy when he can tag along on their pretend adventures. We brought up the exersaucer from the basement this week, and after a thorough cleaning (ugh…it was nasty. Thank goodness for Clorox wipes!), Zachary has enjoyed exploring his new toy for short periods of time. He still hasn’t rolled over but the doctor wasn’t too concerned about that, given his size. He gets closer each time he tries, and now my biggest concern is keeping his older brothers from “helping” him roll. They sometimes underestimate their own strength, and I’d really like to keep the baby’s limbs attached to his torso.
I haven’t cracked open a baby development book since Zach was born, so I have no idea (other than faint memories from the other kids) when certain milestones are supposed to happen. I remember certain things, like the fact that Max crawled the day we moved into the new house when he was eight months old, but for most things it’s probably good that I wrote them down. The cool thing about not having my nose in the books is that the milestones catch me by surprise. Yesterday I took Zachary with me to the end of our long driveway to wait for Gracie’s bus. It’s been too cold for me to bring him out for most of the winter, so we took advantage of the nice weather and enjoyed a little one-on-one time before the big boys woke up from their naps. Zach perked up when he heard the bus coming, then grinned from ear to ear when he saw his big sister emerge. Then he surprised us by busting out a big belly laugh when Gracie jumped in a puddle on the way up the driveway. She looked at him wide-eyed, then looked at me, and I said, “Gracie, that was his first laugh! YOU made him do his first laugh!” Grace was so proud, and continued to jump in puddles and produce major belly laughs from her baby brother. The whole family spent the rest of the afternoon and evening jumping for Zachary, mostly resulting in a look that translates roughly to “You guys look like idiots,” but the few giggles we got from him were worth looking stupid. It was St. Patrick’s Day, and I couldn’t help but think that I definitely have the luck of the Irish: a great husband, four fun kids, a beautiful sunny day when my baby learned to laugh. You don’t get much luckier than that!