Ah child of countless trees, ah child of boundless seas…
Cassidy always struck me as a little Buddah baby and that impression remains now that he’s growing up. I can’t pinpoint what it is. It’s not that he doesn’t cry, because he does. But his general disposition is jolly and easy going and he seems to have such a peaceful center. We could use a little peace around here after high-strung number one, and dictator-of-the-universe number two.
Cassidy does not enjoy his carseat. None of our babies have. I hate them myself. Something about strapping down a helpless, crying person just doesn’t set well with me, call me a hippie though you will.
But he usually falls asleep quickly once we are underway, so there is a relief from the awfulness of not going to your crying baby. In fact, he’s an all around quick going-to-sleeper. He’s found his fingers and sucking them soothes him. I was big on ecological breastfeeding with Annabelle, but in my current life I can only appreciate a self-soother.
He’s also my first baby who recognizes nighttime. It always made sense to me that a baby might not be naturally predisposed to recognize nighttime as any different than daytime (especially in our indoor and electric light culture), so I was surprised when Cassidy fell into a pattern of sleep around 9pm, and persisted in sleep so deeply that he didn’t mind my putting him down (a rarity in his early days), but continued to sleep soundly for many hours. This was very handy at home when I was the only parent trying to parent three kids to sleep at once!
He wakes less at night than my prior babies, and when he’s done nursing he just goes back to sleep, though during daylight hours he is a very light sleeper (unless the engine is running and we’re speeding down the interstate). But somehow I don’t live in fear of his waking like I sometimes have of other babies, because he often wakes to a pleasantly quiet alert state and if he does need more sleep, he slips back into it easily.
He does like being held, which you can hardly resent when he’s such a pleasure to hold and beams joyously at you when you pick him up. And besides it is his right as an infant to be in arms as often as we can manage. So after waking, he chills a bit, then starts complaining and if you don’t hop to, you get a real wail to pick him up.
Cassidy particularly enjoys lying outside naked and wiggling all his parts joyfully up at the sun and the trees.
Ada often goes to be with Cassidy when I’ve left him wiggling on the bed, and I find her holding or hugging him, or telling him the names of his toes. When he cries she picks him up and sings to him. Sometimes I catch Annabelle’s having climbed onto him without anyone’s noticing, and she pokes and prods and grabs with real hearty affection, and I pull her off in anticipation of screams of pain only to find that he is grinning widely in enjoyment. I can count on one hand the number of times he has laughed out loud and the most recent time was when his sisters both congregated around him on the bed to take turns blowing raspberries on his tiny tummy, and then Annabelle threw a cotton wipe onto his face and Ada pulled it off and he laughed, and both of the girls did, too. I delight in their delight of each other.
And for him, there hasn’t been much adjustment to make to our nomadic life…he’s living in the same arms he was back home, surrounded by all the same voices, and really, we’ve been living in this motorhome since before he was born, even if it was in one spot.