Thursday, October 20, 2011

He Thinks He's A Big Boy

One of the most peculiar things about being a parent is the joy in watching your child grow and develop. A little over five months old, Jordan wants to be part of our world by doing what we do. I think if he could walk now, he would.. how much he loves standing up and seeing the world from anew perspective, and how much he loves sitting and grabbing whatever we surround him with (until he plummets over in about 20-30 seconds).

He has learned the clever art of crying at an exceptionally loud volume for just a spurt with his eyes strongly shut tight for emphasis when something is taken away from him that he wants a part of (think sippy cup of a toy he cannot quite reach). Little does he know we laugh secretly and silently as we observe his short spurts quickly calmed by a new distraction to something else (because we refuse to appease him by giving him what he wants everytime - read closely, that means we do give in sometimes).

Lately, he has become increasingly mesmerized by the bottle and the sippy cup. He wants to hold the sippy cup like a big boy around the two handles and tries to put the mouthpiece into his own mouth with limited success. With the bottle of water, he tries so hard with his tiny little hands, to grasp around the bottle and somehow coordinate the movement into his mouth. Most often, his tiny hands are not enough to hold onto the rotund shape of the bottle, and his hands somehow fall off and then are quickly moving around to try again. Other times, he is able to hoover the bottle towards his face and I have become enthralled with just watching him miss and hit himself in the forehead or his cheeks with the bottle nipple and then unceasingly try again (he's definitely not a quitter). Sometimes, the bottle changes angle and he instead thwarts part of the bottom of his Tommy Tippy (think wide stout little bottles) into his mouth (homeboy's got a big mouth... for a baby that is). And most amusingly, he is learning from himself and from us and starting to understand the whole cause and effect thing. I pressed down on the bottle nipple to squirt some water into his mouth and he realized this concept of pushing the bottle nipple did something he wanted. So when the bottle was returned to him, his hands went directly towards pushing down on the bottle's nipple, which could be a coincidence if it's too soon for him to recognize such relationships, but at the time, I thought, oh my, he's trying to imitate me to get the desired effect of water into his mouth!

And how he loves to eat solid food. And how he will start to stuff his bib into his mouth if you are not quick enough with the spoon (note: Andy and I both eat VERY fast, we'd like to think it's efficient but really we're probably just impatient like Jordan) or even start to cry - another thing we are trying to minimize, though being ready with the spoon full of food does help to reduce the amount of clean-up we have as he starts shifting and getting food all over himself or whatever he is sitting on. He loves his peas, bananas, and avocado and he is just enamored with water and the art of trying to get it into his mouth. Once he does, he can be seen enjoying the sensation of this new liquid without flavor but somehow satiating his thirst. I love watching him as he takes in the water, excited and eager for more.

Boy, what an adventure eating solids has been. As much fun as it is to watch him, record him and talk about it, man is it time consuming! They weren't kidding when they said be prepared. For someone who thought nursing was time consuming in the beginning, I am the first to admit, at least there were times when I could be on the phone whether it was playing with Words with Friends, browsing pinterest or e-mail while he sleeps and eats. Not with solids. He has to be awake with solids. Hence, there is not Words with Friends in between mouthfuls, no Pinterest while he munches on his solids, and no catching up on e-mails. I am fully involved, fully committed and to my opponents on Words with Friends, yes - that is why I have been lacking in playtime lately.

Guess it doesn't really matter - it's worth it and I can't wait until he learns how to eat for himself. Such is the case with life and raising kids... as I imagine as the days become filled with more active responsibility outside of diaper changes and feedings, they also become more responsive, hence more entertaining and fun. It's great making him laugh.

Side note: as his personality develops, I am noticing his personality more and more. If he's not hungry or tired, he is completely happy playing on his own in the crib or on the matt or in the bumbo with whatever toy is in sight, or watching Baby Einstein if you put him into a comfortable position before doing so. But he also loves being social if you so choose to interact with him, he just doesn't have a preference much in terms of happiness as both make him extremely happy. The other day, we went to the mall for a Picture People session I regretfully purchased on Living Socials (think very low quality but immediate results high school hoochie momma photos but for babies) and he was so happy, smiling and interacting with our photographer. She pulled out a big styrofoam pumpkin and he was in heaven trying to put it in his mouth. When he became too distracted, she removed it and he was not happy. But instead of crying or reacting with a tantrum, he just remained still, emotionless, and stoically stared at her. No more smiles, no more cooing, just a stare as if to silently declare, "You took my pumpkin, I'm not playing with you anymore, and no, I will not smile for you." It was really quite entertaining to watch him stare her down but almost a bit intimidating to think my baby has developed a personality already!

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