I don't know what it is, but at a certain age a discernible, yet subtle, change takes place. Today I saw this change in Gabriel's face. It seems like it happens over night, which also amazes me. I think it has a lot to do with eye contact. Infants don't make eye contact at first because they simply see a blur and as they grow they see things in their own little world. At the point of the change, they look directly into your eyes with such a "click click click" of understanding. Gabriel just looked at me with his big eyes and truly looked engaged.
He teased me with a toy, by holding it in front of his face and pulling it away. He maintained eye contact to see MY reaction to his comedic act, instead of the other way around. He's pushing cars on the floor instead of just flipping them over to spin each wheel. He listens to commands and understands them. He's starting to babble quick, loud sentiments. He mimics actions and loves to dance and bounce. He's so close to walking, it will be any day/hour/minute now that I won't be able to stop him. The changes will keep coming and I can't believe I will no longer refer to him as the baby.