30 August 2009

A Bunch of Firsts

Part I: Getting Sick

It was a miracle in Baby World when we went 7 ½ months without Eamon getting sick. Unfortunately, that had to come crashing to an end eventually, and unlike most babies, Eamon picked a pretty good time to indoctrinate us into the world of sick infants. I was done with summer school, but hadn’t gone back to my regular job or started classes at William and Mary yet. Aaron had just finished the summer Teacher Institute, so he was working relatively normal hours again.

Besides his sense of timing, another lovely thing about Eamon has been his ability to sleep through the night since he was about 3 months old. He was even sleeping 12 hours some nights, and since he’s been able to put his own pacifier back in his mouth, wasn’t even waking up for a “paci-check.” About a two weeks ago, though, he woke up crying. A few times. He had been drooly and chewing on things, so we assumed that he was teething. We put his pacifier back in his mouth and told him to go back to sleep. He tried, but by 5:00 he couldn’t take it anymore so I got up with him and fed him. I assumed that he was just hungry, and maybe going through a growth-spurt.

The next night, though, he was up again. This time, he would not go back to sleep. He was burning up, but the entire house was warm, and his room was especially toasty from having the door closed. Aaron gave him Tylenol (once again assuming it was his teeth), but after Eamon was up from 2:00-3:30, Aaron woke me up and said it was my turn. I blearily got up and rocked Eamon, singing softly to him, until he sort of nestled in, but even then he couldn’t really sleep. I finally gave him 3 ounces of formula, cranked up the A/C, took him into the guest room (which was a lot cooler), and slept there with him until morning. Even with me there, he slept fitfully, waking every hour or so and whimpering until I soothed him back to sleep.

In the morning, he was still burning up, even though the house was a lot cooler. I decided to take his temperature. Eamon’s temp usually runs low, like mine, somewhere in the 97s. Imagine my shock when the thermometer therefore started at 99 and climbed to 101.6! We took him to my mother (who used to work in pediatrics), but she couldn’t find any symptoms other than the fever, so she said we needed to go to the doctor.

What followed was probably the longest 3 hours possible. Dr. Thomas also couldn’t find anything wrong with him, other than this really high fever, and he looked so lifeless and miserable. Ears and throat looked fine, so she decided to run some blood and urine tests just to be sure. Eamon was a trooper, and though he cried while they were inserting the catheter and sticking him with needles, he calmed down pretty quickly afterwards, which was both a testament to his disposition and his illness.

Eamon at the doctor's office

And the tests showed…nothing. Dr. Thomas was a bit torn. It was probably just a virus, but he looked so puny that she prescribed an antibiotic just to be sure. We took Eamon home and gave him the Augmentin…which he then proceeded to projectile vomit everywhere.

Anyway, after a couple of days, Eamon began to rapidly improve. The medicine was still upsetting his stomach, so I called the doctor’s office and they recommended stopping the antibiotic. If he got sick, start it up again, and if not, then it was definitely viral. He stayed healthy, and has therefore weathered his first virus.

Part 2: Mobility? Sort of?

Eamon has grown increasingly interested in crawling. Unfortunately, he’s still not very good at it. He can get his little butt up into the air, and can even get up on his hands…and then…lunges and flops. He still isn’t able to get to a sit by himself, either (though apparently he did it once for his Oma over the weekend…and then not again since), and I hear that they really have to be able to sit up before they can crawl.

Even more interesting to Eamon, however, is the ability to stand. He has already started pulling up on things, and can even get himself to his knees, though he’s unsure of where to go from there. He likes to play standing more than sitting, and his legs are really strong. Actually, all of Eamon is very strong…just not very coordinated. I’m afraid he might have gotten my coordination, for which I am very sorry.

Nevertheless, he can scoot on his little bottom enough to get things that are far away, and rolls over very proficiently. He can even do 360 degree circle while on his belly.

Eamon is still much more mobile in the water than on land.

Okay, I just really like pictures of Eamon in the pool...even when they only tangently fit in with the entry itself.

Part 3: The New House

I am secretly sort of glad that Eamon has yet to master mobility. Aaron and I recently made the decision to join the world of Homeowners, thanks to wonderful parents and Uncle Obama’s $8,000 tax credit). We’re very excited to be moving into a house of our own (I’m sure you’ll be hearing more about that in the future), but right now the house we’re in is a mess of boxes everywhere as we get ready for our Sept. 21 closing date. Therefore, it’s kind of nice not to have to try to babyproof the house we’re leaving for just three weeks before we have to turn around and babyproof another house.

Part 4: Hey Baby, What’s Your Sign?

As soon as Aaron and I realized that his friends Shawn and Liz had taught their (then) baby Mason to sign, we knew that we would be teaching our babies to sign—and this was long before we even realized we would be having babies together. So a couple of months ago, I purchased a Baby Signs Favorites DVD. Eamon was only about 5 months old, but he was entranced by it. The sock puppets, the signing teddy bear, the cartoon kids, and the real kids, too…he loved it all.

I therefore decided to go out and buy the entire Baby Signs DVD set. For a couple of months now, I’ve been making Eamon watch it with me. Each DVD is about 20-30 minutes long, and he’ll usually sit through an entire one (he will NOT sit still that long for anything else on TV). I’ve really been pushing the Mealtimes signs, and we’ve been trying to use the signs whenever we feed him, too. I knew that we wouldn’t see any results for awhile, since the information booklet said that most kids don’t start using signs until they’re 8-12 months old.

Well, Eamon must have heard me telling someone that, because he turned 8 months old yesterday. Two days ago, he started clenching and unclenching his hand—the sign for milk (well, formula in our case). His Oma (Aaron’s mother) was the first to see him do it, and assumed he was just saying “hi,” which has made me aware of the fact that I need to let people know about the signs.

Nevertheless, we weren’t sure that he knew what he was doing. The other night, he woke up hungry again (he went on a hunger strike after the medicine, and it’s taken awhile to get him back to eating normally), and was making the sign in the middle of the night, too.

Then today, while we were running errands, Eamon started making the “milk” sign at me. I still wasn’t sure he knew was he was doing, so I made it back and asked, “You want milk?” He immediately started crying when no milk was produced. He kept making the sign until we got to my mother’s house and she brought him out a bottle. He drank the entire thing and then promptly fell asleep.

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