Thursday, November 29th, 2012
Could it really be this easy? Or did I just get über-lucky? Did something that I have anticipated (and dreaded) having to do for 3 years just come and go without a fuss or protest? I was envisioning sleepless nights, Fia calling out to us, begging for her pacifier back. I pictured me begging Phil to just give in. I hate to see my baby sad. (Yeah, I know, get over it. At least when we are talking about a piece of plastic that has long worn out its welcome.)
None of my fears came to pass.
Maybe it’s because her lip rash gave us such a good out. “Honey, the doctor says you can’t use your pacifier anymore.” Maybe it’s because she’s going to be 3 on Sunday. “Fia, you’re about to be a really big girl. And only babies use pacifiers.” Or maybe she was just ready to let go.
On Sunday we watched the Elmo episode for the 103rd (and hopefully last) time, about Bye Bye Binky.
On Monday night, 6 days before her birthday, we packaged up her “Bagdee,” wrote a note saying that Fia hoped the baby on the receiving end would find comfort in it, and sent it off. To, well, my mother-in-law’s house. I didn’t know where else to address it. Knowing her, she’ll keep it and someday when Fia is really a big girl, we’ll show her the note and the pacifier that gave her parents such angst (and even made our former nanny pissed at me).
She came down with a stomach flu and fever on Wednesday. “She’s really uncomfortable,” I said to Phil. “Should we give it back to her?” I got an emphatic NO. And further pointing out that she hasn’t even asked for it. So why would we offer it up?? Um, right. Good point. I don’t know…because I’m a mom and want to do anything to make my child feel better???? Maybe I need a pacifier.
At any rate, I have written at least 11 blogs about the pacifier and posted many a picture with Fia and that thing. I’m happy to say, I think those days are over. (At least until Emmett has his turn. But so far, he doesn’t seem to be as attached.)
This is one milestone I’m not overly sentimental about. In fact, I’d much rather see her smile…and now I will. Even at night.
The picture above was when she was about 18 months old. I always wanted her to have one in reach.
This pic from Halloween. Such a pretty mouth.
Why cover it up?
Pacifier picture at top via Shutterstock
Categories: Fearless Feisty Mama, Milestone Monday, Mom Situations, Mom Tricks and Tips, Must Read | Tags: binky, dentist, Elmo, fever, milestone, paci, pacifier, smile, stomach flu, teeth, travel
Wednesday, August 29th, 2012
The pacifier remains my ace-in-the-hole and the thorn in my side. If Fia is whining or acting bratty, I can threaten “no more bagdee” and she immediately reverses her behavior. I’m an army drill sergeant using a pacifier instead of a bayonet to get the results I want.
But Cleo, having nannied for 30 kids thus far (Emmett being #30) told me it was time to get rid of Fia’s paci, at least for naps. She declared that when Fia turns 3, we will get rid of it entirely. Clearly, this is not a democracy.
In theory, I’m totally down with it. In reality, I cringe. I wanted to beg Cleo to reconsider, as that stupid sucking thing is my last remaining bargaining chip. But I know she’s right. She even pointed out that Fia’s teeth are starting to buck a little. Of course a small part of me is like, “So what? She’ll get braces and we’ll keep the paci until she’s 5.” But I know I’m being selfish. I have to remind myself this is in Fia’s best interest, not necessarily mine.
After our recent trip to Emmett’s baptism (where we gave Fia the paci for the flight and threatened to dispose of it every time she kicked the seat in front of her–which happened exactly once), we sadly said goodbye to bagdee during naptime. I wept.
Two weeks into pacifier sobriety, I had a shoot at my house. They wanted to see me in action with my kids. Fia came home from preschool, and without even thinking, I put her in her crib and stuck the pacifier in her mouth (it was in the crib from the night before). I even made a joke to the camera about how she still takes one. I was in such tunnel vision that I seriously forgot that she’d been without for two weeks.
Part of it was because I had been traveling for a family emergency, so I hadn’t been participating in naptime. And of course Fia didn’t volunteer it. Instead, she happily settled in without a peep and slept for almost 3 hours (another reason I love that thing. The naps are doubled in time).
Cleo was in the hallway and asked twice, “She went down without a fuss?”
“Yup” I said nonchalantly. I didn’t know why she seemed so surprised.
At 4:30 that afternoon I came in from an errand, and Fia is sitting at her highchair with the pacifier in.
“What is that thing doing in your mouth?” I asked sternly.
To which Cleo tersely replied, “Well, I guess since mommy doesn’t care if Fia takes the pacifier at naptime, she may as well have it all the time.” Then she stormed into the dining room.
It took me a second to put together the puzzle and then grasp the magnitude of crisis I was facing. Cleo was pppiissssseeeeeeddddd at me. Furious in fact.
“Oh my god, Cleo,” I stammered, as I followed her around the table. “I am so sorry. I totally forgot. I was so distracted by the shoot. I seriously just spaced.” She was pretending to dust the table but in reality was hitting it angrily with the cloth.
“You are really mad at me, aren’t you?” I asked.
“Yes, I am,” she replied, practically in tears. “I’ve tried so hard for two weeks to break the habit and then when you come in and give it to her, all my efforts go to waste. Plus, then Fia doesn’t listen to me.”
She was absolutely right. I really did feel terrible, though I did chuckle later at how irate she got. When I told my Aunt the story, she said, “Good for her for doing so. I’m with Cleo. And I agree: you gotta get rid of that thing.”
I finally got Cleo to believe it was an honest mistake and we both had a good laugh at how pissed off she was. Meanwhile, Fia is sitting there in hog heaven sucking on that stupid thing. I took it out of her mouth and explained how mommy made a mistake. Fia continued to remind me of it all evening. “Mama was bad. And made Cleo mad.” Mea Culpa.
So now, every morning, we take her pacifiers out of the crib and put them on her light stand. That way bad mama won’t mess up again. Fia can gaze longingly at them during naptime and I can dream longingly of sticking them in her mouth, knowing I’m being carefully watched.
I’ll admit over the weekend, when I couldn’t get Fia to nap, I tried to conspire with Phil.
“Can’t we just give it to her this one time?”
“No, absolutely not,” he said. I think he actually glared at me. I am in enemy territory. My only ally is a 2 1/2 year old. And she is the reason I’m on lockdown. Sigh.
Categories: Fearless Feisty Mama, Mom Situations | Tags: army, binky, buck teeth, camera, crib, democracy, dentist, enemy, enemy territory, mouth, nanny, naps, naptime, on camera, paci, pacifier, sleep, sleep training, suck, sucking, teeth, toddler behavior
Monday, April 9th, 2012
Fia had her first dentist appointment last week. She was a champ. How could she not be with a choo-choo train chugging overhead, a flat screen television in the dental chair, and a tub of toys to pick from on her way out? We went to Dr. Thomas Tanbonliong in Larchmont. He’s known for being one of the best dudes with kids. He definitely lived up to his reputation.
Now let me backtrack for a moment. I wrote about my frustration with all of the various (7) pediatricians I’ve been to since Fia was born. A couple of them were adamant that she gets rid of the pacifier (she calls him “Bag-dee”) by the age of 1. If not by 1, then 18 months. Well, with multiple airplane trips around that time, there was no way I was firing Bagdee.
Then came the move and a new baby, and to her credit, our pediatrician out here said to let it go for a while. If we took Bagdee away when Emmett came, Fia would see him with one and feel the shaft. Why rock the boat when the waves are already 20-feet high?
But my trouble in general with giving up the pacifier has always been the thumb. I mean you can’t cut that off. Literally. How could she play her guitar? Or drums. Or well, do a lot of things? I happen to think we need our thumbs. The few times we tried “Bye bye Bagdee,” in addition to the whining, she’d start to suck on her thumb.
Enter Dr. Thomas, who said, “Don’t worry about the pacifier until she’s 3. We don’t want her to go for the thumb.” THANK YOU!! At last, a doctor…errr, dentist, who makes sense to me.
It helps that Fia only uses it to get to sleep and then it falls out. She doesn’t have it in during the day, and Dr. Thomas confirmed she has no overbite or any signs of overuse with the paci.
I’d like to get the opinion of my fellow blogger, Julia Landry on here. She’s a dentist.
Julia, what do you say?
He also told me to start toothpaste with fluoride (pea-sized portion), which I know Julia agrees with.
What we do need to get rid of ASAP are her gummy bear vitamins. He said he’d take ANYTHING over those. He explained that since they are so chewy, they get stuck in-between the teeth. They’re finding that when kids get their first x-rays at age 5, there can be a lot of damage in the gums from the bacteria built up. And if you start off with a lot of bacteria and cavities in your baby teeth, you are more susceptible to it with your permanent teeth.
I told him we have these toddler floss things for her, though it’s more about deciding which color she wants than any actual flossing. If she were flossing every tooth, especially those in the back, then he said she could have the gummy bears. But I know she’s not going to become good at that until she’s probably my age. Maybe they should just make the gummy vitamins for grownups??
He also isn’t a fan of juice–especially if it has ANY added sugar, as that creates a film. He said to have her drink water after every meal to rinse away bacteria. And of course make sure to brush her teeth after the evening bottle. Never let a child suck milk for long periods of time without brushing. Luckily Fia downs her bottle in about 3 minutes.
When we left, I popped into a store to buy her a t-shirt. There was a huge bin of organic lollipops. She begged. She had been so good in the dentist’s chair that I gave in. I suck.
Brushing teeth picture courtesy of Shutterstock.
Categories: Fearless Feisty Mama, Milestone Monday | Tags: bacteria, cavities, chewy vitamins, dental, dentist, floss, flossing, fluoride, gummies, gummy bears, gummy vitamins, milestone monday, milk, teeth, toddler vitamins, tooth, toothbrush, toothpaste