Yeah, you read that right. Somehow, our chubby, smiley little T. Rex has been in our lives for an entire half of a year.
It seems we’ve fallen into a rut with Theo’s monthly updates. He still has a smile that could broker world peace. (Theo for President 2052: Make America Cute Again!) At this precise moment, he’s rolling back and forth across the living room floor, playing with toys along the way. He is a topple-risk, but Theo is getting better at sitting up unassisted.
Theo Rex is five months old now, and we may have moved from sunny Florida to grey London, but we do not miss the weather at all because Theo is the brightest ray of sunshine.
He rarely cries, just makes some fussy noises until we give him some love. He has been experimenting with some solid food and exactly like Dexter, likes it all so much that he pounds the table between bites until we spoon in more more more. Really, the only time Theo does cry is when I run out of food in the bowl and have to take two minutes to walk into the kitchen and get more.
Theo Rex, at four months old, is strong and smart. He’s hungry and happy. He is a shameless flirt.
I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve been sitting in a waiting room or at the train station or anywhere, and I see a woman across the way smiling and making faces at me, wide-eyed and delighted. And I always spend a couple seconds wondering why the crazy lady has singled me out for attention before I realize – Theo is in my lap and he is sharing his irresistible grin with a stranger.
I’m at the Bromley Beer Festival, in line for the port-a-potty, when a pack of cigarettes bounces out of the back pocket of the woman in line ahead of me and falls to the ground.
She doesn’t notice, so I tap her on the shoulder.
Me: “Excuse me, you dropped your–”
And this is the moment my brain remembers that cigarettes aren’t always called “cigarettes,” in the UK, only I can’t quite come up with the right word, and then I remember that they’re called “fags” but now I cannot bring myself to say “fags,” so I’m just standing there, frozen, while the woman stares at me in confusion and possibly with a bit of concern for my mental health.
Me: “your… (I gesture vaguely at the ground) …things.”
My last day at Watermark was July 6, 2016. My first day at my new job will be July 3, 2017.
This means two things.
1. I will have taken almost a year’s sabbatical from my career and
2. I have one last week left as a full time mom.
When I had Dexter, I spent three months at home, and then for two more months I switched between working from home with Dexter, taking Dex into the office and leaving the baby at home with a nanny while I went into the office. At five months, we put him into daycare full-time.
Like most parents, I was incredibly nervous about putting him in daycare. I thoughtfully packed his bag with gear Dexter would need and items that would remind him of home, and carefully composed the essay they asked me to write so they could get to know Dex’s personality and his daily routine. And the big morning, as we were leaving, Matt accidentally tipped the bag, dumping its contents. We tossed it all back in and ran out the door.
It wasn’t until we were getting ready to say good-bye Dexter at the daycare, as I was fighting back tears, that I realized that my meticulously-crafted essay didn’t make it back into the bag.
Dexter, Theo and I had kind of a wacky morning on Friday. On a normal day, we’re eating lunch around 11:30 and Dex is down for nap by 12:30, or else we are in the danger zone for tantrums.
Friday, we were running errands but kept hitting setbacks, so we were late late late. We stopped by Matt’s office for a visit and then we grabbed lunch out, the first time I’ve braved a restaurant with just me + two kids, and we weren’t eating until after 1, so we were deep in the high-risk zone.
In the U.S., when you have an American baby, all the necessary paperwork is generally filled out before leaving the hospital, and then a passport is a separate process, usually done later, since most new babies don’t have immediate international travel needs.
For an American baby born on the U.K., it’s different.