Can you believe it’s already month 4? You’re still a new dad, but you’re probably getting pretty good at this whole human-raising thing. Diaper changing might come a little more naturally and you can probably make a bottle with one hand tied behind your back. It may still feel like a struggle at times, but I’m proud of how far you’ve come, Dad. You’re an awesome addition to your baby’s life.
Time must feel like it’s flying by. Get used to it—this whole kid thing goes by faster than we all care to admit. One day your baby is curled up in a little ball in your arms, and seemingly the next they’re scooting around, rolling over, and making all sorts of noise (and if they’re not, they will be in no time). I know I reiterate this point frequently, but for good reason—cherish the moments, because how we spend each second is how we spend our hours, days, and years.
Beware of Baby Strength
So unless you’re going for the naked mole-rat look and wax your entire body on the regular, you’re probably rocking significant chest hair or even a beard. If you have even the smallest patch of body hair, rest assured, your baby with find it and tear at it with freakish baby power and accuracy the likes of which you’ve never felt. It’s a strange combination of endearing and torturous that can’t help but provoke a sincere yet teeth-gritting smile.
My first daughter once crawled up behind me and used the hair on the back of my legs to pull herself completely upright. Only some of the hair survived her infant yank of fury, and I’m pretty sure my yell woke the neighbors. As a result, I now recommend wearing rear-facing shin pads or, even better, full-body chainmail when dealing with particularly sadistic toddlers.
Look, They’re Doing Stuff!
One of the best parts of being a new dad is watching your child learn new skills and develop. During the next year, your baby will progress into an interactive little drunken-human, and it’s an amazing journey. Your former potato is scooting around, trying to explore their environment and reaching for everything they can get their hands on.
Get down on the floor and help them find new toys. Keep talking to them as much as possible to help them discover new sounds. If you’re lucky, you might have found a few ways to make your baby laugh, whether it’s by playing chase mommy or making silly faces or noises. When I’m exhausted by exploding diapers or endless spit-up, my baby’s laugh has a way of keeping me going.
What’s Up, Doc?
So, you’ve probably taken your baby to their 4-month appointment to get their shots and check up on their growth. In both of our daughter’s cases, we’ve seen them gain weight at this age but drop in overall weight percentile (weight compared to other babies of the same age). Since our kids were sleeping through the night, we had to start waking them up and giving them an extra bottle. If your baby has dropped in weight or height percentile, don’t stress too much (as long as they’re still gaining weight and growing). It’s a common occurrence, especially if you and your significant other aren’t genetic giants. Regardless of whether or not your baby is small or massive, just know that you’re doing a great job. Keep it up!
Missed the other months? If you’re new to fatherhood, there’s no judgment here. You can find the previous month here: