To Pandra at four months old

My dear Pandra, you are four months old. You have made herself quite at home and I’m starting to forget what things were like before you arrived, when it was just me, your dad, and your big sister Lyra. At four months you’ve really started to show your personality. You may look almost identical to Lyra at the same age, but you are definitely not the same as she was. And you’ll have to forgive me for this, but Lyra is the only small girl I’ve learned this much about, so it’s hard not to compare you to her. I promise I’ll try to keep it to a minimum as you get older.

Physically, you’re a lot bigger than Lyra was — you’re already over 14 lbs. Lyra had barely broken ten pounds by the time she was six months old. You’re a lot more active, too. You roll over and hold your head up higher than Lyra did at this age, and you love tummy time while she generally hated it and wanted out after a minute or less. You’ll happily hang out on the floor, rolling over and back, kicking merrily at the air, and grabbing at whatever’s nearby. Lyra didn’t want us to put her down — she was in tears and assumed the tigers were coming for her the moment she left our arms, generally.

Four months old today

Sweet Pandra, you’ve been a lot easier a baby than Lyra was at the same age. Or you mostly have. That tiger-panic I mentioned about your sister? You don’t get that. Yes, you cry, but it’s just crying. And you sleep. You. Sleep. To this day, Lyra has issues with sleep. She was three years old before she slept through the night. Even the newborn version of sleeping through the night — five hours or more — was so rare before she was three that it felt like heaven when it happened.

But you, my lovely little sleeping baby, you have been such a wonderful, normal, sleeping baby, that I feel like I’ve hit the jackpot. You’re up maybe three times a night, sometimes only two, and you nurse and go back to sleep in minutes. You let me put you down when you’re awake, and drift off to sleep on your own. It’s a whole new world of baby sleepytime that we’ve never experienced, and I want to thank you for it.

For the first month after you were born it wasn’t quite as easy — you had yelling sessions that would go on for at least an hour or two, between 1:00 and 4:00 in the morning. We gave it a name: Yelling Hour. It graduated into something else when you got even louder or inconsolable: Pandramonium, as named by our friend Steve. Oh how clever we were.

I watched a lot of the summer Olympics in London to pass the time in the middle of the night, while you were up and yelling. It was so much like the times I spent up in the middle of the night with Lyra watching the summer Olympics in Beijing when she was a newborn. I will probably forever have a soft spot for the summer Olympics because of the two of you.

You’re still the calm little baby that had the steady heartbeat throughout labour. You take everything in with huge blue eyes, and it takes a lot to upset you. You let us know quickly and effectively when you are upset, however. It’s possible that you’ve damaged my eardrums on more than one occasion, and you’ve definitely set the bar for high-pitched scream against which I will compare all other screams. It’s both loud and high, and it rattles my brains enough to have given me more than one headache. Fortunately you give us a warning (usually) before you launch the full-on sonic attack — the epic sadface, or various levels of fussing and complaining that escalate if we don’t respond.

And the chatter! You like to chatter. It feels like you’re constantly making some sort of sound, endless baby sounds as you explore what it’s all about. Will you be a non-stop talker in the tradition of the Silver family? Lyra has her talkative moments, but she’s also content to sit in silence and keep her thoughts to herself — nowhere near as much of a chatterbox as you seem to be. I have to wonder if I’m destined to sit at the dinner table listening to you and your dad talk over each other, much like his family seems to do. We’ll have to wait and see.

Your eyes are bright and you’re endlessly curious already. You charm people, and I receive endless compliments on how cute you are, how quiet you are, how aware you are of what’s going on around you. I remember receiving similar comments about Lyra, and I feel blessed to have another bright, curious, and beautiful little girl.

I can see a fiery spirit in you already. You’re quick to laugh and quick to anger. You’re an active baby — you kick, you roll over, and you’re constantly flailing. You love being tossed around, and I think you’re a lot more physical than your big sister. But still, you watch and consider everything so closely, and you adore your big sister — you light up every time you see her and she can make you laugh when no one else can. She loves you just as much, and seems anxious to spend as much time with you as she can. She’s already looking forward to getting bunk beds, and playing with you for real, and she loves to show you everything that you’ve never seen before, which is everything. She’s excited by the prospect of growing up with you, and it’s amazing to watch how much she loves you.

Of course, we all do — your sister, your daddy, and your mommy are all so happy to have you in our lives, and we can’t wait to share the world with you. There will be so many adventures!