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Archive for the ‘parenting’ Category

Milk and Teeth

Remember how I wrote last week that I was planning to get serious about weaning because Buddy’s renewed interest in nursing when sick made me realize that it was time? Yeah, well approximately 24 hours after posting Buddy started biting me at the end of every nursing session. Not exactly a bite, more of a pull and a scrape of the teeth, still very painful, as you might imagine. So I’ve tried everything I can think of to get through to him that it is not OK to bite me, and nothing has worked, so my take on it is that he is ready to wean but not sure how to get the comfort he needs from me otherwise. 

It’s been a little bit of a balancing act. Right now we have a nursing avoidance program in effect – I try to stay on my feet and deflect any interest in nursing during non-sleep times – and that seems to be working. If he does insist on nursing we have a one bite (OK , sometimes one on each side) and you’re out policy. This holds true at naps and at bedtime too. So far he has taken it pretty well, which confirms my suspicion that he is ready to stop. And we have also started singing special songs, including “Twinkle twinkle BIG star” and “The etsy bitsy spider” to wind down and get ready for bed. Part of me is a little sad, I thought that it would be a longer, more gentle process, but part of me is relieved because now I don’t feel like I am taking away something he is not ready to let go of just yet.

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Nana's Castle

Nana's Castle

We’ve been at Nana and Pappa’s (my parents) for the last few days. It is a great place to be a kid – particularly a grandkid – great toys, an art table, play doh galore and lots of doting attention. Check out the castle sitting on the niche in front of the big picture window!  Now that’s hard to beat.

Plus Buddy got to hang out with his cousins (my nieces) Belle and Zippy (ages 7 and 3 respectively). But there is no internet there and with all the toddler wrangling I had no time to get anything done, so I just tried to relax for a few days and relish the fact that I decided at the last minute NOT to attend the big academic conference in my field this year. I just couldn’t deal with it – especially after both those interviews and then not getting either job. I didn’t want to be away from Buddy that long and I have some time off this week so I need to get ready for teaching and get some writing done on the next chapter. So I unplugged for a few days and just played with the kids and hung out with my parents. SuperGuy enjoyed it too, although his cat allergies make being around my parent’s Persian an ordeal. 

Now we are home and we continue to celebrate Buddy’s second birthday (it’s a week-long celebration). This morning we did all the stuff he likes. We went up to the cupcake place and sat in the kiddy chairs and shared a carrot cupcake with cream cheese frosting and drank water. Then we went over to a local fountain and threw pennies in it. At which point we needed some milk so we walked over to the grocery store and let him push around one of the toy-carts they so thoughtfully provide. Despite his tendency to ram into things (both accidently and on purpose), no cases of wine were destroyed. Finally we went down to the dock and had fish and chips (which is something we do together every other week or so). Now we are home and he is exhausted and sleeping and I think that I’m going to treat myself to a nap as well.

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The story of Geng He and how she fled with her children to Thailand has really struck a chord with me. Her husband, a prominent dissident, has disappeared, probably arrested by the Chinese government with a future in a labor camp and possibly as an involuntary human organ donor. Her story brings up a lot of feelings for me, and brings into stark relief the dilemma between our obligation to our ideals and our obligation, our overriding, undeniable obligation to our children. Before becoming a mother I could understand her actions, but now that I have Buddy I emphasize with her on a whole different emotional level.  I need to process my thoughts and feeling on this story a little more, but it brought into stark relief the question of whether or not I would be able to live up to my political and moral ideals (or I could support my partner doing so) in a situation in which I would have to choose between my convictions and the well being of my child. I am glad I am not faced with such a dilemma, because I know the answer – Buddy would absolutely, positively, always come first. And that is a little scary.

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Buddy has a runny nose and a cough and has been a little off all day – acting tired and wired at the same time. Getting him to sleep tonight was exhausting. It took three tries; holding his hand, saying goodnight, leaving the room. He would fall asleep, wake himself up coughing, call out, and we would start all over again. He finally went down around 9 pm. And I’m exhausted. To bed.

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