Everything is different the second time around. Rather than comparing Archie to the tiny baby he once was, I compare him to his older brother, who walks and talks and is a little boy not afraid to speak his mind. Compared to him, Archie is still so small and so fragile still. He is not yet crawling and his smile is still gummy. He hasn't mastered any sounds other than blowing raspberries and he is as reliant on me as ever.
Although the months are flying by, and all the signs show me how much Archie is growing, I am reluctant to let go of the baby mentality. Archie is still nursed to sleep, he still wears sleepsuits all day long when we are having a quiet day and his porridge in the mornings is still fed to him on a spoon. I am ignoring the fact that the 6-9 month vests are slowly being packed away as the 9-12 month hoodies come out of storage. I am ignoring the fact that Archie is quite content to feed himself, and is busy mastering his pincer grip.
I am ignoring the fact that today I noticed a change in his laugh. It no longer sounds like that newborn giggle that I loved for so long, but it is now the big belly laugh of a small child. It is louder, longer and just as beautiful but it is different and bigger and more grown up.
Archie still needs me and there is something so heartwarming about being needed that much, even if it is hard to remember that during the night feeds. When he cuddles into me in the dark to fall back asleep, he is just so tiny and so fragile that I bring my knees up to warm him and protect him as a natural instinct.