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The month of teething dangerously

Dear Matei,

You are 4 and a half months old and have had an extremely busy couple of weeks growing hair and teeth and regaling all and sundry with your drooling and screaming. As stressful as your teething has been at least it is nice to know that your screaming has a cause and a purpose other than doing what near-drowning and particularly violent strains of influenza couldn't to finally be the thing that kills me.

And today I can see two bottom teeth that have broken through the gums which leads me to believe (and hope! and pray) that the worst of this might be coming to an end, which would be gratifying because frankly I want to start slathering lidocaine on my own gums and then my bleeding eardrums. I would prefer laudanum but apparently they don't make that anymore.

Your new toothiness is exciting (farethee well sweet gummy smile!) as it is the first rite in your independence from me. I am taking this new toothiness as a cue to start introducing solid foods into your diet since you are growing fast and losing weight at a rate your father and I would find enviable on an adult but consider alarming on a child. My milk supplies seem to be dwindling along with my Life Energy and my willingness to allow my nipples to be used as chew toys. (Bosoms must always be treated with respect my son, and it would behoove you well to remember this when you reach adolescence and beyond. Also that there are few problems in life that a nice long sleep won't soften Matei, including toothaches and hunger pangs, I wish you would take my word on this and give it a try).

This month you have been adding all kinds of new tricks to your repertoire which now includes laughing, rolling over in both directions, making excellent attempts to sit up, engaging in all kinds of contortions while on your side, catching to gnaw, gurgling in long sentences and stroking my face. Sadly your skills do not yet include Reading, Talking To the Internet or Lying In Bed While Daydreaming although you are getting better at Watching TV From Baby Seat. I merely suggest these skills as examples of things you might one day enjoy, but frankly I am prepared to accept almost any variant of Amsuing Oneself Quietly Without Causing Obvious Destruction.

Although loving you is easy raising you is hard. And although I am always the best mother I can be, I am not always as good as I want to be. Our relationship is one of deep attachment and frequent friction. On hard days, the days when I run out of patience before you run out of energy or the desire to be carried around, and when you end up wailing and screaming and I end up screaming back and punching pillows which funnily enough makes you howl all the harder and I need to let you lie there and scream for a bit while I leave the room and cool down until I know I've got my own angst and rage under control enough that I am not going to grab you too hard or shake you.

Those are deeply distressing moments for both of us, but in the end for all the clashing of wills, our relationship, yours and mine, is ultimately about forgiveness.We start over. I come back into the room clamer. I pick you up. You cling to me and sob into the side of my neck in a way that breaks the heart. I hold you. I release my anger nd resentment and you your stress and sadness. And so each hard day we make our peace. And start over again.

We may be bruised but we still love and I will always keep trying. I won't give up on you, just as you donćt give up on me. That is my deepest promise, the cornerstone of our sacred covenant.

Love,


Yo Mama

PS I am sorry I haven't replied to comments on the past couple of entries. I read them and I appreciate them but my internet time is slave to Matei's catnaps and generally burns like fossil fuels.

Comments

( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
bonnieredwater
May. 12th, 2008 10:49 am (UTC)
AWWWWWWWWWWWWW!!!!!!!
rainsinger
May. 16th, 2008 06:04 pm (UTC)
the parenting gig admittedly has its sweet moments
:)
prophetsong
May. 12th, 2008 11:37 am (UTC)
That's lovely and so true.

On the teething front, Z's 2 bottom teeth came through at about that stage too and there followed a few weeks of teething reprieve before it came back again and today we have a top tooth just broken through. It looks so hideously painful that I can totally forgive the crankiness that's accompanied it's arrival over the past week!
rainsinger
May. 16th, 2008 06:05 pm (UTC)
Crankiness with a definable Cause is always much easier to be empathic about I find. It's the Random Crankiness that drives me truly batty.

Also, post some pictures of your baby :)
smallblakflower
May. 12th, 2008 02:20 pm (UTC)
I actually welled up at this. Wonderful entry.
rainsinger
May. 16th, 2008 06:06 pm (UTC)
Thank you. I am amazed and delighted that people are touched by my confessions of parenting semi-competnece.
truth_is_not
May. 14th, 2008 01:23 pm (UTC)
Poor baby (and poor mommy too). I know teething rings work wonderfully well, but have you tried taking a clean washcloth, wetting it and wringing it out good, put it in the freezer to get it good and cold and letting him gnaw on it? The roughness of the cloth helps the teeth to break through the gums.
rainsinger
May. 16th, 2008 06:07 pm (UTC)
I haven,t! The previously reccomended strategy was to soak the washcloth with a bit of white wine and rub his gums with that which mostly turned out to be a waste of wine. I will try it with the freezer, that sounds better on all fronts with me.

How are you btw? (Itćs always nice to see you)
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )

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