Ellie is sound asleep, thumb in mouth. It’s 8.07 pm. She went to bed at 6.00 pm after a day of record awake time and five feeds rather than four, which I am regarding as progress since the last three weeks have been all about catching up on those lost sleep hours from her first three, unsettled months.

Today, looking at her in the arms of a visitor, I did a double take. Her feet were at least a centimetre longer than they were yesterday, I swear.

I know babies are destined to grow, yet it is still amazing when they do, right before your eyes. That’s what she has been doing in all that sleep. She has been growing.

It’s an almost alchemical process, the way babies grow. One minute must pass into another and in that next minute, there is an extra layer of cells, and then another, and then another, until, hey presto! Your baby is ten centimetres longer than when she started.

You know, if Ellie would stay still long enough, I would love to do time lapse photography on her. I would love to be there in the moment that she transitions from one size to the next. Well, I guess I am – but it is always with a gasp of surprise that I notice my baby is bigger. The day she could grasp my finger intentionally and not just grab it reflexively, I did have to swallow a sob. My baby is still only a baby, but she is always growing longer, growing rounder, growing up.