Ack! There’s somebody in there!

Posted: November 3rd, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Food, Paigey Waigey Wiggle Pop | No Comments »

Last week, while Mark was in Neuva York slumming  his way through dinner at wd-50 alongside Gourmet Magazine editor Ruth Reichl, food critic Geoffrey Steingarten, Chef Grant Achatz and other foodie luminaries, our neighbors took pity on the girls and me and had us over for pumpkin-carving and pasta.

In a rookie-level tactical error, I fed Paige before the rest of us sat down, then realized I’d dashed any hopes of her sitting out our meal patiently from her high chair. Employing an Italian-American approach to problem solving, I looked for some more food I could stuff into her.

Did they possibly have any Cheerios, I asked. “I think so,” said Jennifer. But then looking at the box, “Oh, but they’re the sugary Honey Nut ones. Will those work?”

Mark and I fully embrace the No Sugar for the Kids so There’s More for Us patented approach to childrearing. So, I paused for a brief moment before my own desire to eat uninterrupted won out and I succumbed.

At nine months, Paige is proficient at swiping Cheerios off her tray and even picking them up with her pincer grasp, but she still hasn’t had the I-can-put-these-in-my-mouth-all-by-myself realization. So after I inserted the first-ever dose of sugar into her innocent little bouche, her eyes widened, and she excitedly tapped her fingertips together, signing “More! More!”

It was the first time she’s signed! I’ve only been trying to teach her a few signs–more, all done, milk–seeing as, well, seeing as I only know a few myself.

And earlier in the day when she got all babbling arm-waving hopped up looking at some pumpkins I asked her if she’d like to touch them, and wonder of wonders she reached right out and she did!

Call it parental goofballness, but it is amazing to get those first hits of two-way communication with your little bundle of chub. It’s not like you don’t expect it to ever happen, but after nine months of feeding and bathing and diaper-changing marked only by intermittent smiles and laughs–which don’t get me wrong are akin to a narcotic for a sleep-deprived Mama–after all that it’s still thrilling and freaky and somewhat unbelievable when you suddenly get confirmation that there is in fact someone in that baby body. And that they are listening.

Jennifer and I encouraged Paigey to sign “more” a couple more times to validate that, yes, she was in fact doing it. Woo hoo! I gave her a million proud kisses all over her head like she was some prize-winning Basset Hound at Westminster.

Of course, it’s been nearly a week and she hasn’t signed a single time since. Granted, she also hasn’t had any more Honey Nut Cheerios. 

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