Yesterday morning we woke up and went through our usual routine. Steve took Nate to the potty and then to his play mat while I threw together my spinach/zucchini/egg scramble breakfast and wolfed it down as quickly as I could to be ready for the inevitable “I’m hungry and also ready for my first nap so please stop everything you’re doing Mommy” breakdown Nate brings on approximately one hour into his day. I nursed him and napped with him since I am feeling a little under the weather his week, and I expected him to be his usual happy post-nap self after he awoke. A fresh diaper, full tummy and good nap later, he suddenly got extremely fussy and clingy. I thought perhaps he was still hungry, so I took him back to bed and tried to nurse him again. He latched on for about 30 seconds and continued his fit. I finally tried letting him gnaw on my finger to see if it would calm him down (which has been a staple of my calming routine during this teething phase) and I felt a little ridge I had not felt before on his gum. This was different from the few bumps and slight swelling I had felt before. I brought him into the living room to get some natural light on him and sure enough, there it was. A tiny white nub of a tooth protruding from his little red gums. It must have just started breaking through skin because he was extremely sensitive and cried when I tried to get a closer look.
I joined him in his little cry fest because for some reason this milestone hit harder than some of the other ones he’s reached. I will never see him smile another completely toothless grin again. Seems so silly, but it’s the first time I’ve been cognizant of his growing up and moving farther away every day from the helpless floppy tiny baby he was when he joined us nearly 6 months ago.
Some other fun developments in Nate’s world as of late:
- He is pooping and peeing in his own potty now! We’ve graduated from the tub. I think it was too large for him before and a little scary. Steve has been so unbelievably patient and good with him, waiting upwards of 20 minutes for a good morning poop. Of course, other days, like this morning, it was more of an instant gratification. He must have had everything lined up for Daddy! I’m loving our Pourty potty, which while not as small and potentially comfortable as the Baby Bjorn Little Pottymight have been (I could not see spending $50 on something he would really only need for a few more weeks until he gets better at sitting up) has worked just fine. The best part is how easy it is to clean. It has a little handle and a pouring spout on the back end that makes it impossible for even the clumsiest (that’s me) of parents to spill while cleaning.
- Nate has started sitting up! Well, not entirely on his own, but he is making great progress. He tips to one side or the other but can really hold his own leaning forward and picking himself back up again. He’s also making some crawl-ish movements where I can tell he’s figured out that pushing off on his legs/knees will propel him forward, but he needs to build the upper arm strength to help with that. He has started treating our bodies like jungle gyms, climbing, lunging forward from, etc. I absolutely love it.
- For a while, I was trying so hard to get Nate to nurse that I would literally offer him a boob at all times of the day like my life depended on it. Before naps, after naps, during play time, etc. I think I did it so much that it started to annoy him because after a while if I offered him a boob when he wasn’t hungry, he would start howling angrily as if I’d pinched him. One day I noticed that while trying to get into our usual nursing position, I went to nuzzle him and as I did, he started nuzzling and rooting for the tip of my chin as if it were a breast. I caught on and instead of trying to offer him a boob, I offered him a chin. If he was hungry, he’d try to latch onto my chin and I’d know it was a “go”. In the past week, he’s started to actively seek out my chin/cheek to “ask” for food. I’ll take it! It’s so sweet because I can very vividly remember the sting of feeling (incorrectly, of course) that he was rejecting me every time I tried to feed him. We’ve definitely come a long way from those frustrating days.
On the topic of eating, I am excited about our next foray into the baby unknown: solids. I’ve put them off for this long because a) I have plenty of milk to go around, so there really was no need to try to fill him up on rice cereal, and b) I have read enough to convince me that his body was not ready for nor did it need solids. I can’t wait to see his face when he starts bringing real food to his mouth! He’s been watching us so intently for weeks and moves his mouth in little chewing motions as he looks on. Now to figure out which food to offer him first …