Hannah started in this world as her own person, on her own terms and as she saw fit. She was the only child to come out on her own, without help and boy she came fast and furious. It was barely 3 hours from the first contraction to holding her in my arms. She came out as a fighter and demanding things her way unlike the rest of our kiddos. She was moments old when we took the first picture of J holding her and that was the only time he held her and she was not screaming for the next year. She could be hard asleep, limp and nothing could wake her until I passed her to J and she would scream and pitch a fit until I took her from him, as you can imagine that made our first year with Hannah stressful as parents and a couple.
Hannah wouldn’t sleep by herself until she was almost one; J and I slept apart for many months due to this. He needed the sleep so he could still function at work so Hannah and I slept in her room. I should say Hannah slept like a baby, I did not most nights. Her sleeping position of choice was my neck and despite moving her many times she always managed to crawl back on my neck in her sleep. Sleep training was tough too. We listened to her cry for 30+ minutes most nights. We tried everything… and all the stuff everyone tells you not to do. Blankets, pillows, lovey’s, I even took my shirt off as I laid her in bed each night so she had my scent with her. Nap time was even tougher. I wanted so desperately for Taylor and Hannah to nap at the same time because that was the only 2 hours of the day I could nap or wash clothes or eat. Randomly one day after I put Taylor down for a nap I sat on the couch with Hannah hoping she would settle down and relax. I turned on CMT and before the first song was over she was out cold and I could even transition her to her crib without waking her. So that became our routine, turn on CMT when Hannah needed to fall asleep.
Hannah is the girl that has kept me guessing and on my toes more than her siblings ever have.
She was a fighter not only with sleep but car seats and shopping.
She bit me a lot during feedings and when we moved her to a bottle she refused every bottle and nipple until we were at the absolutely last brand, style and flow rate that was available. Little did we know that was setting the tone for who she is.
She was climbing before crawling to grab knives off the magnet bar and use them as drumsticks.
She was a hider, stealth like too. She hid from us and hid her things. She remembered her hiding places for her passy and made new ones when we found out her old hiding places. She would go to bed without a passy when were weaning her off of them and I would get her up and she would have 2. And yes, we made sure her bed was passy free. I always wondered why she never seemed sad about not having anymore passy’s. We were passy free for about a month, so I thought, till one day I found her playing and she had at least 6 of them. About a year or more of no passy we moved from CA to TX and in packing and moving we found handfuls of passy’s.
She was walking by 10 months; on her own we never helped her.
She potty trained herself before she was 2, never had an accident.
Thanks to her we had to paint 3 rooms and a hall way in our rental in CA because she used the walls as her canvas. Then it was her head board and footboard. She has used many items as her canvas and many more as her artist tools to color and paint with, some have not typical artist tools and required disinfecting areas.
She is her father daughter. It goes beyond her looks. They have the same brain, way of thinking and seeing the world. All of which is opposite form me so clashing of the minds and frustration is frequent.
She is a genius in her artistic skills. Her math and science thinking goes beyond her age and she is successful in those subjects with great ease. She knows her skills surpass mine and there are things she will not come to me with or talk to be about. In her words it’s “mom you just won’t get it.” Although that hurts I know I cannot be everything to everyone and I am so glad she has her daddy who fills in in ways I cannot.
She is a deep thinker and a deeper emotional soul. Things touch her in deeply and ways they do not touch others.
She is a snuggler, loves hugs, kisses and closeness.
She is funny, silly and her creativity is astounding. She likes to be in the spotlight.
She is passionate and sometimes it comes across and misunderstood as anger, lack of understanding of others, and over the top.
She is her own person and has always been her own person. Before age two she demanded her own style and I fought (far too long) on getting her to wear what I wanted her to wear. I gave in and although it was tough for me it was the best thing I could do for her and me. Since preschool all her teachers have raved about how Hannah is unique, her own person who is confident in herself style and abilities.
She cares deeply about everyone. If you ask her how she is doing you better be prepared for her to ask you and wait for an answer, then ask you what you did that day, what was good about it and what you plan to do later. And, yes she will listen intently and remember what you said and then ask you about things later.
She fights us on food, mainly produce.
She is not a good speller and hates having to do it. She sees no need for it.
She knows who is at her level intellectually and who is not. Those above her level she likes to talk to, ask questions and collaborate with. But she is good to not make those below her level feel inferior. She likes to help them and challenge them.
She loves to be around people and have fun but she relishes her quiet time to be alone and decompress and create.
She has been building since she was very young. She has used blocks, recyclables, paper, wood, anything she has to make cities, swings, contraptions, doll houses… it is amazing how she sees objects and what their potential is.
She is particular and some perfectionism is coming out.
She gets anxious and although you wouldn’t know it due to her confidence she wants others to accept her just as she is without change, without question.
She is a hippy, beauty queen, rocket scientist, rap song writer, deep thinking builder, math genius who loves to know how the world works and why blessing I have in my life. We are different thinkers and viewers of the world that has caused us to clash at times but my world is richer and sweeter with her in it.
She has always been the child I have had to watch out for more than the others. With her many food allergies, anxiety issues, deep focus on her thoughts she misses the world around her at times I stay on my game. As she is getting older we are determined she take a leadership role in making sure she is safe by always asking questions about food she eats, reading labels, not taking it for granted, knowing how to use her epi-pen, not eating something she wants because she is unsure of ingredients and making sure she can walk through the day without her hand being held. She wants to travel to Europe like Taylor did but the things listed above have J and I concerned about her going….so we sent her to VA for a week to be with Bubbie and Callie. He flew here for work and to fly with her but she will be flying home solo. She has to teach them about food allergies and show them she is in charge of it.
This is not the first time Hannah has been away from us. At least once a year our kids are with other family members, camps etc, for a few days to 2 weeks. But Hannah has not been so required to be in charge of her allergy like this and travel alone. However, something is different about this trip that has me all emotional and crying like I never have before. Maybe it is the letting go of the control, not passing the reins over as tightly before and learning to trust that Hannah has to learn to stay safe with food and in places she is not use to. I have complete faith and confidence in Bubbie and Callie and I know all 3 will have a marvelous time; they are very similar to Hannah in many ways. I guess I never knew how much of my time, even sub consciously, that I focus on Hannah and making sure she is safe, OK, and making sure I am talking to and interacting with her in a way she can understand since we are different thinkers. This trip is her growing up and I have having to let go a little. I just was not expecting this and then being emotional on top of it all.
She has a fun and busy week planned that address all of her strengths and interests. I cannot wait to hear about it and see all the things she creates. So glad our family is close and eager to have my children and love them like their own. We are blessed on both sides for our kids to have time with grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins.