Growing up with Danielle Pt.2
Part 2 of Growing up with Danielle is finally up! Took me a while… hehehe….I’ve actually had this entire post drafted since early March, it was just the pictures which took slightly longer to edit etc. And add to the fact that I love to procrastinate…. 😛 Anyways, here it is!! Part 2 of Growing up with Danielle. Here are Dani’s progress and milestones from when she was 7 Months till she turned one!
We had a super busy July – several photoshoots, a trip to Singapore and my press conference to announce my Marie France ambassadorship.
Dani continued to learn and pick up things very quickly. I’ve just started to show her some hand signs like eat, milk, more, please and thank you. She didn’t really care and didn’t imitate the actions at first but then I thought, aiyah, nevermind la, I’ll just keep doing the hand signs whenever I say that word, maybe she’ll pick up. And she did, eventually, to my surprise! The first one she did was please!! And I can’t tell you how pleased I was when it happened! She was listening and learning after all!
She had also developed a red spot on her left cheek during month 7 that grew bigger and more red as the days passed. That will continue to be our troubled ‘spot’ till this day! I’ve tried to eliminate certain foods which I thought were the cause of the rash to no avail. I tried every lotion, every eczema cream and even brought her to see a skin specialist, and the only thing that worked was a steroid-based cream called Cutivate, which we still have to continue to use till this day!
Sleeps Through the Night – Over 8 Hours
Shakes her body to music
Simple hand signs
Rocks front and back on all fours
Disclaimer: Ok, gentlemen, you might wanna skip this part cause I’m gonna go into details about breast feeding and breast milk.
This was the month my breasts started to dry up and I had managed to pump just enough milk to last her till the 9th month before we completely closed shop. I had slowed down pumping after she was 6 months – when I started her on a bottle of formula a day. From pumping 6 times a day I slowly cut down to 5, dragging the hours longer then to 4 and eventually, I only had to do one pump at night before I go to bed. And supply slowly dwindled as well as soon as I dragged the hours longer. From being able to pump up to 12 oz per session, I only managed to pumped around 3 oz per session before I completely dried up. She was drinking 5 oz at this point, the same amount since she was around 4 months. I tried to increase the amount to 6 oz but she just won’t take the last ounce.
I have to admit, I felt relieved when I was finally done with breast feeding and pumping.Â My goal when we started was to feed Dani breast milk for 6 months and we’ve surpassed that! Although it wasn’t too difficult for me to breast feed since I was more or less a full time mum, I didn’t feel as though breast feeding helped me bond with my baby. In fact, it made me so tired and worn out that I couldn’t feel the joy of having my baby so close to me! The task of carrying her for over an hour Â just to feed her, burp her, and then wake her up from her snooze and feed her again was just sucking the life out of me – pun intended! 😛 Â Pumping was slightly easier, although it took about half an hour of my time every 3-4 hours, which are precious times that I could’ve spent bonding with my daughter. Plus after a few episodes of block ducts, which were so unbearably painful and even more painful to unblock, I gave up.
I do not doubt that breast is best and I know there are a lot of people out there who are advocating breast feeding as the best way to bond with the baby, but with different babies and mummies comes different circumstances. I felt like I bonded much more with Dani by singing to her and playing with her rather than feeding her.
This is to all the new mums out there feeling the pressure of breast feeding. I know how you feel, wanting to give your child breast milk but not being able to produce enough or not enjoying the feeds, I felt the pressure too! But I told myself, there is no point in forcing myself to conform to what everyone says I should do when I don’t feel right or happy doing it. Sure, there are times when I question myself and regretted my decision to stop, especially when Dani falls sick, I’d think, maybe I could’ve tried to pump till she was one or maybe she won’t fall sick that often if I had breastfed her for longer, but you know what, it doesn’t matter anymore, I am a much happier mum now than I ever was when I was breastfeeding or pumping. And happy mummy = happy baby! Plus there are plenty of other ways to give your child all the love you can give, so don’t beat yourself up about it (I’m constantly telling myself that too!)!
Socialises with other children/babies (Had lots of playdates this month)
Pulls herself up to stand
Does the ‘Wheels on the Bus’ action – especially the ‘Wipers going swish swish swish’ part
Starts to babble a lot more sounds
Recognises different toys
Likes to pull objects out of containers
Cut her first tooth
This was the month I started her on breakfast, so now she gets 3 solid meals a day. Her typical menu would be; Oat porridge and banana for breakfast (at this point I ground the oats to make it finer and easier for her to swallow), Porridge cooked in vege stock with tofu for lunch, and mashed potato and vege puree for dinner. Truth be told, I seldom cooked before I had a baby. But I guess she is reason enough for me to get into the kitchen and try to whip up good, nutritious food for her to ensure she grows up healthy and happy!
We’ve been doing 3 solids and 3 bottles of milk since Month 9 and it’s been going well. I’m truly blessed with a non-picky eater who eats almost everything I cook and serve her!
During her monthly visit, the midwife also commented that at this age, Dani is very confident with strangers. She is weary every time she sees someone she doesn’t know, but she warms up fairly quickly if they’re also being friendly to her.
Crawling on all fours
Recognises different tunes and claps to the ones she knows
Signs – Please, More, Thank You, Sorry
Says ‘Mam-Mam’ which means Eat
Tries to feed herself
Pulls off her socks
We took a trip with Dani back to Kuching when she was 10 months to attend a friend’s wedding. It was great cause my best friends finally got to meet Dani and I got to meet my friend’s babies as well.
Since she had started to cruise, Joe and I thought we’d get her a walker to assist her in getting around. And it did, and she loves to follow us around in it. I’ve read a lot about how walkers are not encouraged because lots of accidents happen with babies in walkers but I thought nah, it won’t happen to Dani cause I’ll be there to look out for her. But, it did happen, and she fell down a flight of stairs when I looked away for just a minute. It all happened so quickly I had no time to react. I started screaming when I saw the walker with my baby in it thumping down that first step and when it flipped to the side, seeing her head bang on the stairs as I ran after her – that image will stick in my mind forever.
I was in shocked when I carried her out of the walker and up from the stairs, I was crying hysterically, so was she. My maid who was in the kitchen didn’t even hear the commotion until I shouted for her. She had to take over carrying Dani as I was shaking so badly. First thing I did was call Joe to tell him what happened. I must’ve given him quite a scare as I couldn’t even string proper words together to explained what had happened. I was just hysterical! Dani had pooped herself from her ordeal and somehow, I’d managed to clean her up and changed her diaper before heading straight to the clinic. Praying and praying along the way that it was nothing serious. She was dozing off in the car after crying the whole time, which panicked me even more!
Fortunately, lest the few bumps and bruises on her head, she was fine. She didn’t fall out of the walker and since it was also a pretty wide walker, it took most of the hits. But I felt like the worst mother in the whole world and when Dani was crying when the Dr examined her, I started bawling as well and told the Dr that I am the worst mum in the whole world for letting this happen to my child. For not being vigilant enough to make sure she was not in danger. I felt terribly guilty for causing her this pain and throughout the day, when I thought about it, I’d burst into tears again and again. She was fine after her nap and milk and was back to her happy self again. She even wanted to get back into her walker again! But I am forever scarred by that incident, so now we have safety gates and I have hawk eyes. 😛
Cruises while holding on to furniture
Drinks from a sippy cup
Plays pretend – feeding toy baby
Understands simple instructions
Top 4 teeth came out together
Would sometimes sleep up to 12 hours at night (heaven!!)
Month 11 and 12
She has started to talk a lot more at this stage and by the time she was 1 year old she could say at least 20 words. I first taught her to address everyone at home and she started with Dada and Mummy and Che Che. She also knows Po po, Ma Ma, To To (For Ko Ko cause she can’t really pronounce G or K). Other words she uses often at this stage were Chor-Chor (to sit), Per Per (for apple), Pen (for open), Book, Ng Ng(for poo poo), Ra Ra (for Dora the Explorer – she loves Dora the character but only watches the parts with music) and she has sounded out ‘More’ when she wants more food, together with her ‘more’ hand sign.
At this stage I feel like she understands me fully as she takes instructions very well. I also understand her better now that she is more expressive and knows what she likes and dislikes. Her personality is starting to show and she’s actually a very easy-going, friendly and cheeky little girl who loves to eat and play!
We celebrated her first birthday with a big party at home. And she also had her first proper Christmas celebration – Christmas Mass, opening presents, eating grown up christmas lunch just a few days after her birthday.
Gone is my little baby, she has become a happy, bouncing toddler. And gone is the mummy with the blues, now, mummy can’t wait to show her the world! =)
Walk with assistance – walker/holding hands
Scribble on paper
Turn pages of books confidently
Shakes her head to No
Laughs when Chased or when asked
Aware of the functions of different objects (knows that if she drops the ball in the hole of her Learning Door, music will play, if she press the buttons different sounds will sound)
Loves to shake her booty to music
Says a lot of words
That’s about it for now. I hope you guys enjoyed this journey back in time to reminisce all the different events and milestones that I’ve experienced as a new mum to a beautiful little girl. Children do grow up so quickly and if there’s one thing I’ve learned after being a mum for 16 months, it’s that I need to stop worrying about the little things and enjoy every moment I get to spend with my daughter.