Monday, February 6, 2012

Blame it on the Te-Te-Te-Teething

Have you seen me Yet?
If you think about it, teething is a barbaric process that requires splitting open of the gums in order for dull enamel growth to protrude through enabling your child to better bite through a banana or pureed organic vegetable medley. Oh, and it comes with the added bonus of crankiness and sleepless nights. Teething symptoms include: drooling, crabbiness, ear pulling and can last from the age of 6 months to 3 years according to WebMD.

What I find particularly amusing about the process is its lack of specificity and scheduling. I’ve seen five month olds with teeth, and on the other side of the spectrum Alejandra at one year and three months has none. That’s right, none. Having no teeth, however, does not disqualify us from thinking it’s ‘teething’ that’s keeping her from sleeping of being cranky. It’s just the latest in a pot of possible ‘causes’ of deviation from ‘normalcy.’ I realize, as I write this, the irony behind trying to assign a ‘cause’ to the ‘normalcy’ or lack thereof to our lives since Alejandra joined our clan! Let’s see, 15 months minus five months equals 10 months; 10 months where we could be ‘treating’ or expecting teething to be the culprit behind the crankiness or sleepless nights. That is a little too long for me and, although I try to focus on cherishing the moments with Alejandra, there are some moments when I wish I could cherish the time staring at the inside of my eyelids.

My wonderful wife and I have been anxiously expecting these falsely labeled ‘porcelain’ gems to make their appearance. In reality they are nuggets of enamel that help us with biting and chewing. I found this great chart to compare if and when Alejandra’s teeth decide to join the outside world . The lack of enamel protrusion is in no way hindering my little girl from accomplishing the task of eating. In that department she excels and I can’t imagine her being any better at eating once she gets her own set of choppers.

So why am I sharing this with you? Well, I was feeling some anxiety about Alejandra not having teeth yet, and writing this helped me better understand the process. It also reminds me that just like when we were expecting her to crawl and would have ‘tummy time’ in hopes for ‘crawling time’, it eventually happened all on its own. Moral of the story: don’t rush it, it will happen. Your baby will soon enough feed herself, walk, eat, and dare I say it, drive and go away to college. I’ll sit and miss the times we were able to sit and eat a meals together, walk and hold hands, and rediscover the wonders of the world together.

     -   Alejandra's Dad

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