Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Touchdown pose

It's 7:50 am. I have my early morning headache. Kt is dressed, looking pretty hot in her regular "Uniform" for work*. The baby has been fussing (and when i say 'fussing' I mean the moderate twitching-ish flailing and 'gooing' that we've come to associate with our perfect child when he is not
1) totally satiated
2) adequately rested
3) recently diapered
4) without any digestive discomfort what so ever.)

We've been reading the Baby Whisperer, and "paying attention to our baby" as she advises. I think you have to take all baby advice with an open mind AND a grain of salt, but I like her general perspective (My summary: Treat your baby like a person, be respectful, listen, and learn about him; but like you would for any other person in your life, set limits and be in charge of creating a relationship that you can live with down the road...) Her point of view has been helpful and reassuring. She reminds her fans that babies will cry, it's their only way to communicate... give them a minute to cry and listen to figure out what they want. In other words, don't just shove a tittie in their mouth. The more you listen, the more differentiated their cries will sound in your ears and you will learn to identify the meaning of various cries.

Back to us at yellow, suburban house: Often, he acts hungry when he has to poop and we know this. If I offer him food, he will latch on for a minute and then come off, head bobbing and screeching as if to say, "I came into this restaurant to use the bathroom and your Maitre d keeps shoving food into my mouth!!!" I admit, i do this often. I do it because... well, I'm Italian and we usually start by feeding our people even when they need all sorts of other remedies and comfort measures. That's our game. That's what we do... That's a little thing we like to call, "LOVE."

I've been guided by my wife to take the major evolutionary step of hearing the above "Maitre d analogy" and not conducting my own internal translation that ends up something like, "YOUR TITTIE IS SOUR... THIS MILK IS SCORTCHING MY THROAT... YOU CALL THIS LOVE?!?!?! I HATE YOU..."

But there's another reason I try to feed him first... Sometimes the sucking works. Getting food into top the part of his GI tract creates an opposite "emptying" action, and he poops.

So, back to this morning. It's time for him to eat. It's perfectly reasonable for him to be hungry, he hasn't eaten since 4am. But after a few feeding attempts, we realize that his cries are not about "emptiness," but "fullness". We know this, but we can't do anything about it...

I actually start Googling, "How to make an infant poop." All these hits come up about constipation which is definitely NOT what we are dealing with here.

In the mean time, since he is crying anyway, kt focuses her attention on trying to wrestle a hardy, crusty snot that is peering out the edge of the boy's nose. It's been beyond our grasp for days, bothering us about a million times more than it is bothering him.

And we wait... wishing we could help him feel better... having taught ourselves in the past few weeks that this type of fussing is generally associated with a discomfort we can't fix. Even at this young age, there are some things he's got to work out for himself. So we wait with him, at least hoping to show him, he is not alone.

A few minutes later, FIRE IN THE HOLE! And kt and I, from different sides of the living room, shoot all four of our arms into the air as if our team has just scored the game-sealing point(s).

*minus the gold shoes. And though she does own one salmon colored top, her "uniform" usually contains a shirt that is less pink, and/or darker in color.

By the way, kt bought a new jacket (at my urging) and though it is black and not red, yesterday she left the house looking EXACTLY like her "wee mee" in the side bar of this blog.


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