Nine Month Check Up

V had her nine month check up yesterday.  I thought she was running on the small side but apparently she’s pretty average. Of course, it’s hard to tell with all her playmates. L has a huge head. Huuuuuuuge. Like he wears toddler hats huge. Another boy in her group went from average 2 month old baby (last time we saw him) to 6 month old gargantuan. He’s now 20 pounds and crawling at 6 months. V is still not crawling, though she can roll around with ease. Tuesday she started trying to pull up on our hiking backpack. The pediatrician told me to sit on the floor at home and look around. Anything at eye level would be in her reach.

We also discussed eating habits. He said she’d begin eating more and more table foods. I told him I’d been trying to eat healthier just so she could share some of my food. I’ve been giving her Shu Mai and she actually seems to like them. It’s one of the few ways I can get her to eat meat and veggies. She wants to be in control of what goes into her mouth, and anything “weird” needs to be taste-tested on her own, not offered by me. I should start offering spring rolls and such as well.

Speaking of which, one of the moms I know had a great method for dealing with pickiness. Yes, some people are super tasters and can’t stand certain vegetables because they are bitter, but some people are just picky. This mom believed that kids often mimic their parents when it comes to preferences. If Daddy thinks something is gross, why would Junior want to eat it? This mom grew up not knowing her own mother hated peas. Her parents hid the fact by passing around the peas at the table, starting with the kids. When the bowl arrived at her father, he would take the remainder of the peas then say “Oh I’m sorry dear, I didn’t realize I’d taken all the peas.” She’d sigh and reply “That’s okay dear.” Her mom didn’t have to eat the peas and the kids were never any wiser. We may have to try this. My husband hates vegetables and I have plenty of foods I can’t eat (anything remotely spicy).

Movie theater nachos are too spicy for me. I'm not kidding.

We now have fluoride drops that she has to take twice a day. Unlike the surrounding cities, ours doesn’t put fluoride in the water. Many of my moms in my playgroup flat out refuse to give their babies fluoride, which I think is kinda silly. The stuff is healthy in appropriate doses. Some of them might be put off by the fact that you can’t feed it within two hours of offering dairy products (it binds to the calcium, which is why it’s good for teeth). I spoke with the pharmacist and he said it should be ok to feed after breastfeeding.

I also spoke with the pediatrician about sun exposure. There seems to be a lot of hype surrounding babies and sun. CNN recently posted this article. The article even includes this tidbit:

“It’s not only about ‘I’m going to the beach now or [getting] in the sun,'” she says. “It’s even a car ride or walking to the store. It’s the recreational exposure also.”

Really? I know radiation is cumulative but I don’t think we need to start lathering on sunscreen every time we set a foot out of the door. No wonder pediatricians keep pushing vitamin D supplements! (Your body makes its own vitamin D every time you’re exposed to sunlight.) So I asked my doctor if there was any truth, and how seriously I should take the hype. He said the reason they hype it up is because they want you to think “Hey, we’ve been out in the sun for two hours, we probably should apply/reapply sunscreen.” You don’t need it for trips to the store. Children who burn easily should have sunscreen on. Babies should generally have hats on. He said to make sure you focus on the ears and nose, because those areas stick out and tend to get lots of sun, even when wearing a hat, making them prime spots for cancer later in life.

V is smart. I know all parents think their kids are smart, and quite frankly, kids are generally more inquisitive than adults to begin with so this is not surprising. Many adults lose that curiosity and we live in a culture that glorifies stupidity. V loves to observe. She can be happy and chatty and playful too, but sometimes, particularly in new situations, she wants to sit and take everything in. The pediatrician noticed and said you can really see the wheels turning while she tries to figure something out. He said she seems highly intelligent, though I’m guessing a lot of parents hear that, but I believe it. My husband is highly (and annoyingly) intelligent and I’m not exactly dumb so I have high hopes that our kid will be some sort of genius. The doctor said she was a “world-changer.” I see no reason to argue.

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