Two things: Sticking her fingers in her mouth and blowing saliva bubbles. These are the child’s newfound hobbies. She regularly takes time out of her busy baby schedule to investigate the passageway at the back of her throat and to project generous amounts of spit.
For her, all this is quite humorous. She laughs her wee little head off, even when I draw my eyebrows together, lower my voice and speak to her in very stern tones.
“Baby, how many times have I told you not to do that!” This after she’s more or less swallowed all five fingers and has begun to gag. “Huh? How many times must I repeat myself,” I continue, as if she can understand what I’m saying. “What kind of bad manners are those?” I’m nothing if not persistent.
If I were an emoticon, they’d be fumes coming out of my nose. But baby is oblivious to all of it. She just laughs and laughs. Chortle, chortle, chortle. Chuckle, chuckle, chuckle. Her eyes twinkle. Her smile as wide as it could possibly be, looking at me like I’m an original Queen of Comedy.
And when she’s done being amused, she purses her lips, sticks out her tongue and sprays my face with saliva, as if to say, “Like OMG Mum. Whaddup with that? Good manners are like, so five minutes ago.”
I can’t help but laugh with her even though I have a feeling that she’s laughing at me. We’re breaking records for the fastest number of bib changes in a 24-hour period.
Worse still, I can see signs that she’ll be after her toes next. Up until now she didn’t seem to realise that her lower limbs were part of the package. She would kick her legs and then pause and look around, trying to figure out what was happening.
These days, she’s managing to grab her legs and pull them forward, and since all paths lead to her mouth, I’m pretty sure her toes will soon come to the end of that road. Which is unfortunate. First of all, that can’t be hygienic. And secondly, the story goes that if a baby sucks her toes there’s another baby on the way. Please God, don’t let that happen to me.
As you can imagine, there’s a lot of ‘stop-this-and-stop-that’ going on in our house at the moment. Never mind that it is always a one sided conversation. Or at least only one side takes it seriously. Baby thinks everything is a song and dance.
Lord knows what will happen when she becomes mobile because keeping her still for any amount of time is like trying to change lanes in traffic – almost impossible. She’s learning how to roll over and for some reason the same view is always better from the other side. There is no hygienic way wipe a baby’s butt while simultaneously keeping their hands and feet out of her faeces, especially when tasting poop is the number one item on her to-do list, and she’s figured out that her body was made for moving.
Of course, the sterner I become, the more amusing it is for baby. Everything is funny in poo poo land.
When she’s not trying to eat life with a big spoon – literally – she’s drinking it. And she doesn’t appreciate delays. She’ll kick and scream like the world is coming to an end if she’s hungry and her milk is not forthcoming as fast as she thinks it should. But when she’s full, it’s another story. I’ve heard that infants like to suckle, even if they’re not drinking because it gives them comfort. No one told me though that they like to chew too. And by chew I mean munch. We’re usually somewhere along the suckling, munching, pinching continuum. By the time we’re done with this breastfeeding thing, I’ll be kicking my twin factories out of the way with my feet. Things will have sunk – literally – to that level.
But I really can’t complain. She’s such a sweetheart and I love her to bits. What would my life be without the little princess? I can’t even imagine. At the end of the day, I would do anything for the child, which is why I’m taking her to a performing arts school. When she’s rich and famous, she can pay for my boob job. Yeah, that sounds about right. After she’s bought me a house of course.