I think for most kids, the first word is a noun, mama, dada, ball, toast, what have you. But we know already that Val is not most kids. She proved this once again late last night with this:


Followed by a long discussion of ohs with Andrea and I. The three of us there, having a little Oh party.

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Not Every First Is A Good One
So far, most of Val's firsts have been great -- smiling, laughing, crawling, sitting up, standing up, pulling up, rolling over, giant poop while in the shower (He-LLO turd!), waving, flapping, clapping. All good.

But then there are the not-so-good firsts. Her first shots (thankfully, I was pretty wacked out on painkillers for her very first one so that one was harder on Andrea than me), her first illness and now, her first real owie.

Apparently she was crawling off the edge of a rug yesterday and BAM! The rug apparently jumped out (in much the same way that the blue line will jump out and trip innocent skaters during a hockey game) and tripped her, sending her slightly oversized noggin over the edge and onto the hardwood floor below. Her brand-new teeth cut her lip and drew blood for the first time in her little life.

Of course, this happened while we were at work. She cried and cried and in the end there's a wee bruise on her now-fat upper lip. Yes, there was blood on her shirt, too. Later she did feel better, well enough to enjoy some spaghetti:

But that doesn't stop my heart from breaking every time I think about her being in pain. It's all I can do to stop myself from buying her a little helmet to wear around the house.

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We went to the park...
Originally uploaded by torturedmommy.
There was a break in the weather and a break in my crazy work that gave me a little free time late Friday afternoon. We got to go to the park with Sam, Riley and Susan. Dare I say we all had ourselves a fab-u-lous time?

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9 Months Ago Today
Was my due date. The date we'd been carrying around in our heads for 40 weeks, the date we'd answered so many times we didn't know what else to say about it, besides, yep, that's the date, yep, it's a girl and nope, we're not telling you her name.

A lot's happened since then. A ridiculously painful labor, a quickie c-section, a beautiful baby who stole our hearts the moment she arrived, sleepless nights, crawling, teeth, standing, flapping, clapping and thank you Jesus, solid foods.

I love being on the other side of that date, when the wait and the wondering is over. I know what's going to happen, I know how she arrived into this world, I know how much labor hurt, I know how big she was, that she had hair (god, I was OBSESSED with knowing if she had hair while I was in labor. Every single person who stuck their hand up my vuh-jay-jay got asked 'DOES SHE HAVE HAIR? CAN YOU FEEL HAIR???'). That I could breastfeed. That she is indeed a rather happy baby. That she looks a lot like me at times. That within 2 days of her birth, I could look at her and think, yeah, sure, we could have another.

I could do this again. She's that powerful. To make me put aside all the stuff that sucked about pregnancy and be willing to do it again.

But that's another discussion for another day. For now, I can only offer you this: my little Val-entine.



Who's looking at Val?
Originally uploaded by liz2d2.
I returned from lunch to find this chance pairing of pics. Fantastico!



The Mommy Coat Originally uploaded by liz2d2.

It was much better than Friday. Much. Better.



Today's Adventure
Well, our morning sucked. We got up early to take Val to the cardiologist yet again, in the vain hopes that her heart murmur had closed on it's own since the last time we went to that place.

Val was a total trooper, stayed still long enough to get the EKG (though she did take the little wires off more than once, that's my girl!), get weighed (17 lbs, 5 oz), and measured (28 inches though I think that's an inaccurate measurement, next week's pediatrician appt. will no doubt reveal a different, shorter measurement). She enjoyed waiting for the doc to come in, pulling herself up on just about everything while I tried to put my happy face on for her.

Finally, the hardest part came: the 10 minutes of ultrasound that required her to lay still.

I know, an almost 9-month-old girl laying still? Are you joking?

But somehow, through the miracle of a darkened room, the magic flickering of the ultrasound screen and a pacifier, Val actually fell asleep.

And that's when we discovered that the doc can still hear her murmur when she's calm. Nope, it's not closed.

Here's the good parts: -it's still too small to measure. -she can still be active, play sports and all that.

The bad parts: -it's still there. -since it's too small to measure, the doc didn't know if it had shrunk or not. -the doc started talking less like 'well, it'll close before she's one' and more like 'if it never closes, here's what you have to do as she grows.'

I wasn't quite ready for that last leap. I'm still not.

At least Val had a good time.

The doc wants us back in 6 months but at this point, I have to ask, for what, exactly? It's not something they can fix surgically or with medicine, any future appointments will either say yes, the fucker's closed or no, it's not.

I don't think we can bear to hear no again anytime soon. So we're gonna wait a little while past the 6 months and hope that it decides to close.

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