Tuesday, April 23, 2013

My baby is a head banger!

I'm not sure how it happened. It's not as though I've been playing heavy metal music but Michelle has become a head banger. When she's sitting on my lap sometimes she'll rock and bang her head on my chest. That seemed harmless enough. It hurts me more than her. When she's sitting on the couch and bangs her head against the back of it it's so soft and cushiony that she just bounces forward. The worst is when she bangs her head against the back of the high chair. Though there is a bit of a pad on it it really isn't that cushiony so she's hitting her head against hard plastic. Sometimes when she really hits hard she starts to cry. I tried explaining to her to stop it and that she was just hurting herself but to no avail. I'm not sure if it's out of boredom or frustration or whether she just started doing it because she realized she could. Someday soon I hope she'll learn the lesson that just because you CAN do something, doesn't mean you SHOULD.

I remember seeing a scene in a movie while I was pregnant where a baby was standing in his crib and banging his head against the bars repeatedly. I think it was the movie "Change Up" which incidentally is a hilarious film about two men becoming switched after inadvertently casting a spell at a magical fountain. The single one ends up in the married father's body and vice versa so they each get to see how the other half lives. Anyway, at the time I thought it was so far-fetched. "As if a baby would actually do that!" Now I realize that it is possible. As babies discover new and different things they can do physically they can become fixated on certain actions and keep repeating them until they tire of it or discover something new to move on to. Michelle still loves clapping her hands as well. She's also started a new monster growling noise. I was on the phone with my Mom one day and she heard Michelle in the background going "Grrrrr" like a bear or a tiger. "What is THAT?!" my Mom asked. "The baby. Doing her monster noise." "She should be in the movies!" my Mom said. Michelle is also quite the little screamer. "She loves the sound of her own voice!" my Mom said. I can definitely imagine Michelle in movies. She certainly has a flair for the dramatic. I have no idea where she gets it from.

Though not necessarily a metalhead -- apart from the head banging -- Michelle is definitely a music fan. When she hears music she starts to boogie a little, bouncing her legs and clapping her hands. Sometimes she gets really excited and squeals in delight. When she jumps in her jolly jumper (which is now more of a run and swing action) sometimes I'll put some music on and dance with her and she laughs her head off. She gets a kick out of seeing Mama acting silly. I loved to go dancing back in the day so I still like to cut a rug once in a while with the baby. It's really cute when she's holding on to the ottoman and starts to dance. I make sure to have pillows all around her so she has a soft place to fall. She's getting better at going from standing (or dancing) to sitting without falling down. 

Michelle is also fascinated by my guitar. She likes watching me play and even tries to play it herself. Unfortunately now it seems that my guitar has swallowed my nipple shield...
One day I was trying to quickly check my email. I had Michelle with me in the office. She was being good and was playing with the nipple shield (I had just finished nursing her and she likes to grab it off me and play with it for a few minutes. I usually let her. These days anything that will entertain her for two seconds is a godsend as long as it won't hurt her.) I didn't figure she could do any harm. Next thing I knew I could hear a guitar string being strummed. She had crawled over to the guitar at lightning speed. "OMG!" I rushed over to her before she could pull it over on herself or anything. I picked her up and noticed that the nipple shield wasn't in her hand. I checked all over the carpet. There was no sign of it. Mind you, it can be a challenge trying to locate something that is almost invisibile -- a clear little circle of silicone/latex or whatever it's made out of. After scouring the carpet for 10 minutes I began to deduce that it was most likely INSIDE the guitar. Great. Now if it was a hard object I could shake the guitar and hear it rattling but because it's a soft rubber thing (and no doubt sticky as ever with baby drool on it) it's probably stuck inside the wood somewhere. One day if and when I'm changing guitar strings (I've never actually done it myself and it won't be any time soon) I may find it and keep it as a souvenir but until then I've pretty much written it off. Thank God I had a spare one. I have to be really careful with it now though. Considering I'm supposed to be weaning Michelle in a few months (babies can have cow's milk at a year so I do want to start cutting down on nursing if not cutting it out entirely at 12 months) it wouldn't make sense to go out and buy another one as a spare. My Mom asked "Can't you just try nursing her without it?" but I've gone all this time with the shield I don't want to confuse her now. We're both used to the way things are and I don't want to spoil it. Plus I'm afraid it would hurt too much. My nipples have remained soft and pink so I don't want to get them calloused with a bare feeding now. There was a while there that Michelle was being more rough with me and I was red and sore but the doctor prescribed me a cream that worked wonders and thankfully it was just a phase and Michelle has been going easier on me. Also the fact that I have cut down the feedings somewhat -- from every two hours to every three -- has probably helped. I am going to try cutting down to every four hours once she hits 9-10 months. My Mom asked if the guitar sounds any different now. I don't notice a difference but I figure the shield has to be in there because it's nowhere else in the room and can't have vanished into thin air (though sometimes it seems like things do!)

It's ironic when I try so hard to keep Michelle from banging her head accidentally (watching her like a hawk, putting pillows everywhere in case she falls, running to put my hand there to protect her from near misses -- thousands of them -- like hitting her head on the bookshelves, the dresser and other hard furniture as she bends over, pulls up and grabs at her toys and books) that she would start doing it on purpose. I know that she will figure out (hopefully sooner rather than later) the cause and effect of it. To realize that she's hurting herself and to stop it. I try to prevent her from ever being hurt but my Mom pointed out that I can't protect her 100% forever and that part of learning is getting a few bumps and bruises here and there. My sister said that she had a helmet for my niece when she was little and learning to walk. Shannon hated it though and my sister didn't like putting it on her. I probably would have been tempted to get a helmet for Michelle if I'd ever seen anything like that. I can't recall ever seeing one in a store and I don't do a lot of shopping these days. I have a feeling she would hate wearing a helmet anyway and be pulling at it and screaming. She can't stand anything restrictive or confining.

I have to say I do like a wide variety of music and even enjoyed some metal when I was younger. Since I'm writing about head banging anyway, just for fun, here's Quiet Riot's video for "Bang your Head! (Metal Health)" --




At least my little head banger isn't such a night owl anymore (KNOCK ON WOOD!) She's back to sleeping fairly well at night for the last couple of nights at least. I'm hoping it's a pattern that sticks. After a long, cold, snowy Winter, it seems Spring is finally here. The weather has been really nice so we've been going out for walks a lot more and even sitting on my backyard garden swing for a while in the afternoon. I hadn't been out on it since I was pregnant. Half the time it's been lying on its side blown over by the wind. Michelle really enjoys being outside. Maybe the fresh air is doing her good and helping her sleep better at night. Maybe she's going through a growth spurt and needs the rest. Or maybe my hyper little running, swinging, boogie woogie head banging thrill seeker just wears herself out.


6 comments:

  1. All the contents you mentioned in post is too good and can be very useful. I will keep it in mind, thanks for sharing the information keep updating, looking forward for more posts. Thanksfurniture Store

    ReplyDelete
  2. My nephew use to bang his head like you describe as well, almost broke my SIL's nose once but never hurt himself seriously. Hope Michelle phases out of that soon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope so too! Some things never get old with her (like grabbing my glasses off my face!) but I hope this habit doesn't last!

      Delete
  3. Maybe she ate it

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tee hee. Ummm no. I don't think that's possible! It's a bit large. It's not just the size of a nipple. More like the size of a baseball. No I'm pretty sure the guitar ate it. I guess I'll be tearing the strings off if I lose the spare now...

      Delete