No More Baby Stuff

Yesterday Mike and I were standing in the kitchen while Adam played around our feet, discussing when and how to wean him off of a pacifier and a bottle. Mike pointed out how weird it was that we don’t have a “baby” anymore. Our Peanut has officially moved into “toddler” status, and some of the toddler-y things have begun to emerge. Like he can just walk now. No more holding onto stuff for balance or anything. He can go somewhere, decide he wants to change direction and just do it. The shock of this one hasn’t quite worn off yet. 

The other big-deal leap has been Adam’s communication. He doesn’t talk a lot yet, but in the last few weeks has let us know what he wants with a pointed finger and a grunt like some tiny Tarzan. Sometimes the pointing is more generalized, like toward the kitchen. Then it’s up to Mike and I to take him in there and pinpoint exactly what the desired object is. Most of the time it’s something he most definitely cannot have (the olive oil, a knife, Mike’s sword-shaped letter opener), so we have to tell him no and distract him with something that he’s willing to settle for. I say willing to settle because once he gets his mind on something he wants he is so determined to get it. So when we’re able to give him the object of his desire when he asks, that makes it all the sweeter. He gets a giddy smile on his face and laughs with delight because he communicated that he wanted something, Mommy and Daddy said yes, and here it is!! 

Once in a while I figure out exactly what he wants and he gets that excited smile only to have his Meanest Mother in The WORLD tell him no. He wanted to go outside a couple of days ago, but it was very windy out and I didn’t think it was optimal weather, so I said no. What followed was what I can only describe as the first in what is likely to be many toddler tantrums. He started crying and banging on the door, pointing outside, then pointing at the doorknob (how does he know what that does?!?), finally throwing himself on the ground and leaning against the glass while wailing. Luckily, after stifling the smile I had because Adam is the cutest thing in the world even when he’s screaming, the secret weapon I employed worked like a charm. 

“Adam, do you want to come read with Mommy?” (cue the giggles and laughs) The kid loves his books. 

I’ve started researching all the new things having a toddler will bring. When does the bottle go away? When do we wean him off the pacifier? Can he have honey now? Seafood? What kind of shoes are best for a new walker? When do I move away from formula? I had so much time to research how to raise a baby, but now that baby has sprinted through that stage and I feel like I’m scrambling to keep up. 

The dentist we went to for Adam’s lip-tie was so anti-pacifier that we’re starting there. Binky stays upstairs during the day and Adam only gets it at bedtime and during long car rides where he’ll probably fall asleep. So far it’s worked pretty well. We have to keep them out of his sight or he’ll immediately want it but that’s not too hard. This one is kind of breaking my heart, though. He didn’t want the pacifier until he was six months old, and it was such a win for calming him. Now he knows it’s awesome and can sign that he wants it, so we’re stuck distracting him until he forgets about it. There have been a few manic times where he can’t calm himself, but on the whole the last few days have been ok. 

The bottle has also gone bye-bye except for bedtime. We introduced the sippy cup months ago, so Adam knows what it is. Yesterday Mike put formula in it and there was such good reception that I decided today would be a great day to try no bottles except for bedtime. This morning didn’t go fantastically, but it wasn’t a total disaster. This afternoon, well. Not good at all. Adam threw a tantrum to end all tantrums. He didn’t want anything I offered him, but then cried harder when I gave him what he pointed at. The bed, the bottle, the pacifier, all worthless to him. I had to set him down because we were both beyond frustrated and five minutes later when I went to try again he had managed to get both legs through the slats on the crib and was stuck. I finally brought him downstairs and cuddled on the couch for a while to calm us both down, then tried again. It took a while, but he’s asleep now. 

I know the transition phase is going to be tough, but man today’s bedtimes weren’t great. After a couple of weeks of having an awesome routine down, I’m kicking myself for throwing a wrench in it. I’m sure he’ll get with the program soon enough, I just hope my nerves stay intact until that happens. 

 

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