We had our first Timothy scare last weekend. I was sitting with Laura and my parents, watching the little man teethe on a large carrot stick. One minute it was in his hand, the next minute the carrot stick was gone. It’s hard to explain the panic that shoots through your body when you think something could be really wrong, especially if it’s your fault. But fortunately, T’s cheeks have the capacity of an airplane hangar and so the carrot was sitting quietly in there and had not yet gone down the hatch. I removed the orange instrument with all of the finesse of a lumberjack, and then tried to act as though nothing had happened, though the now screaming baby boy may have blown my cover.
When he has the opportunity, Timothy lies on his stomach. While it frankly makes you nervous at times to see the little man sometimes lying almost face down, tummy time is useful for him to stretch and strengthen muscles, especially some useful for crawling.
Timothy is not yet crawling but likes to rotate on his stomach like a lazy Susan, and can do the full 360 degree rotation on a blanket in about a minute. Joan, our occupational therapist, suggested that we start helping him get used to being on his knees – kneeling and leaning forward on his arms. That should help him get more comfortable with his knees, which can lead to the crawling motion. And even if it doesn’t get him crawling, as a Catholic he’ll be kneeling down plenty during Sunday mass, so he’d better start getting used to it.
Back to his stomach — when you lay T down on his back on the changing table, he immediately wants to roll over onto his stomach. This means you need to pay close attention (more so than in the above mentioned carrot incident), and it makes it tricky to put on a diaper, much less to squeeze Mr Roly Poly into some tasteful footy pajamas.
Another dressing challenge is getting T’s chubby little hands through his sleeves, especially if we’re in a hurry to go somewhere. We put one arm in the sleeve, roll up the sleeve, pull his hand through, but sometimes when we’re rushed, we pull a Timothy Four Fingers. This is where it looks like his hand is through the sleeve, but then you count only four fingers -– and realize you’ve left a man behind. When this happens, I quietly apologize to him and assure him that this kind of thing happens to all parents and babies from time to time. And then I quickly push his hand back down the sleeve, locate the missing pinky and restart the sleeve threading process.
Ever since he started eating solid foods, Timothy has been on a hunt for more nourishment. And he recently struck gold in a source close to home — his bib. He tries to eat neatly, but a fair portion of the carrots, oatmeal, etc find their way onto his bib, which, with many splashes of color looks like a painter’s palette.
If you’re feeding him his solid foods and you pause between bites, T just sticks his food splattered bib in his mouth. Sampling from his cloth appetizer tray may be Timothy’s way of saying that he doesn’t have time to wait for you.
Or maybe he’s just hungry.
Grateful but sometimes impatient,