Tye has grown up so much in the past week! Not only has she grown vertically (she's so much longer!), but she has also developed some visual and social skills that seem to give her so much personality. Now, Tye is able to visually track objects, following a moving item with her eyes. The other night when Tyler placed a piece of dry cereal near Tye's face (long story...), she followed it until her eyes almost crossed from the close proximity. Something about this skill makes Tye look so much more grown up, like more of a "person" than an unresponsive infant. Tye's eye gaze has also changed. While, like all babies, Tye has always stared at faces, she now makes actual eye contact, making her gaze more engaging. Also, when one of us is holding Tye, she makes an effort now to turn her head towards our faces. I don't know if she's following our voices or looking for our faces or both, but it's a very endearing new skill that we automatically perceive to be socially engaging since that is how we adults use the skill. When Tye uses these new skills, it really feels like she is participating in the relationship. Don't get me wrong- Tye still shows that infant affinity for bright objects and often stares at my hair or over my shoulder rather than at my eyes. But those moments of more advanced interaction provide us with a glimpse of the fully-interactive, purposefully-engaged girl Tye will become.
During my pregnancy, I had to make a very conscious effort to fully appreciate each day rather than focusing on looking forward to new developments. I'm finding it was good practice for parenting. As excited as I am for Tye's new developments (that first true smile comes to mind), whenever I think of those future skills with anticipation, I take a moment to stop and appreciate today for the beautiful gift that it is. And then I dream about the future. As is the theme of parenting, "She's growing up so fast!"