Little man, at nine months old, has now spent more time out of the womb than in. We’ve covered so much ground in this little life that I wonder if he even remembers his life as a fish. I like to hope he likes his new life. There are things he certainly loves, like his brothers.
At his checkup this week we found he has dropped twenty percentile points in both weight and height. Of course I remember his brothers both leveling out sometime between nine and twelve months, and since he’s such a busy baby and the only solid food of interest is paper, I guess I shouldn’t be surprised. And yet I’m now monitoring him like crazy. He hates to be fed food, tolerates playing with it himself, but after gummin it around does he actually swallow? If he’s not eating soon we will be sent to a speech pathologist to rule out oral issues. I would have poopooed the suggestion but have seen the result of undiagnosed oral issues such as these.
It’s been an anxious week for me. It has underscored the nagging worries I have had all along. I didn’t worry about the older two. Blinded a little by the naïveté and immortality of my own youth I effortlessly tuned out the voices of doom and mothered them instinctively and confidently. I’ve struggled all along to do that this time, but with the experience of age, the extra fatigue, and without my tribe, it has been so hard to keep those voices at bay. I really miss my earth mamas.
This afternoon as I tried to be rational about things and remember how much or little the others were eating at nine months, I don’t remember food being a big part of our lives. I have always been quite casual with introducing solids. But what I remember vividly with all three (Red, Blue, and even Daytime Brother) was that nine months was very trying for me because of separation anxiety.
But what if I had it all wrong? Little Man is rather attached but he does play with his brothers and I can certainly throw a diaper away without eliciting a three-alarm scream because there is always someone else nearby and the layout of our home is much more open. So far separation anxiety is not a big deal with him, but the food has been stressing me out. What if it wasn’t the separation anxiety in the others that made this age so difficult for me? What it is was my hormones? My endless fatigue? What if it never was the boys, and it was always me?
It’s so much easier to think I am the problem. That won’t keep me up at night with worry. I’ve been at this stage before, and I survived. I will survive again.
And if in a couple of weeks he still can’t/won’t eat a cracker, then visiting a specialist to rule out (or fix) issues before they become problems won’t kill me (even if the deductible threatens to do just that.)