3 Things That Have Surprised Me About Having a One Year Old

by Charise Rohm Nulsen

In a little over a week, my precious baby will be a year old. It’s been the most amazing year of my life, and I have truly savored every moment of it. I have to admit that for much of this year, I have been dreading Baby’s 1st birthday because for some irrational reason, I thought it would be the end of so many special things. Maybe I was scared that he would feel less like my “baby” or that the most special time of my life would be ending. Now that I am standing on the edge of Baby’s one year birthday, I realize how silly these fears were.

Here are 3 things that have surprised me about having an (almost!) one year old:

1. Parenting just gets more and more fun!
Of course, there is nothing that compares to the magic of newbornhood and infancy; it is such a unique time that can’t really be paralleled in any other stage of life. Thankfully though, I’ve been realizing that every day with Baby just becomes more and more FUN as he gets older. We can really play together, and when I talk to him, he is actually listening. We make each other laugh all day, and there are no words for how incredible it is to watch Baby make new discoveries and explore the world. I feel honored every day to witness his explorations.

Mom and baby play on the grass

I get to experience the joy of first time discoveries and explorations in my play time with Baby!

2. Baby has such a distinct personality already and my husband and I can see our own personalities reflected in Baby’s.
It is so amazing to see Baby’s personality evolve. He’s funny, sweet, thoughtful, and curious, and I love seeing how these qualities manifest themselves each day. Although Baby is very much his own person, we love seeing bits of our own personalities coming out in Baby. For instance, he is obsessed with books and animals, just like his mama has been for her whole life. Also, Baby loves making people laugh, just like his dada. He literally bursts into loud belly laughs all day long just to get other people to laugh with him. What a cool personality trait to have! I admire Baby so much already!

Baby tries to grab the cat's tail

Baby laughs as he tries to catch our cat's tail. He's an animal lover and a jokester!

3. Although Baby is becoming more independent, our attachment and closeness just keeps getting stronger (Thank God!)
I mistakenly thought that Baby’s newfound independence due to his mobility and new abilities would mean he would be too busy to maintain his super affectionate ways with us. Boy, was I wrong! Baby just keeps getting more and more affectionate, and he loves to interact with us so much. Baby relishes giving big hugs, making us smile, playing with us, “talking” with us, and snuggling next to us as much as possible. I love that he is actually choosing to do these things and be so close to us. Infancy is partly amazing because you are so needed by the miraculous little one in your life, but I underestimated how fantastic it would be to be needed less and actually chosen more!

Baby stands between mom's legs

As I walk through the house, I get these little visits from Baby. How cute!?

Baby hugs mama's legs

How can I not smile all day long when I look down and see this face hugging my legs?

Is there anything that surprises you about your child’s current age?

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