I'm discovering one of the true-isms of parenting is that whenever your baby's in a "bad" stage or falling behind on a milestone, it's hard to imagine things ever getting better. Even knowing on an intellectual level that things have to improve eventually doesn't stop you from feeling frustrated or hopeless. I had one of these meltdown moments a few days ago (actually at some ungodly time in the middle of the night) when Emerson was screaming to eat for the third time in an hour and I was exhausted, literally drained and "touched out." As we both sobbed and Robbie did his best to help, I moaned that I must be a failure as a parent because I could not get my child to sleep, eat solids, stop eating so much milk, attempt to crawl or babble (if he doesn't start saying his consonants in a month, we have to start speech therapy in addition to the visual and occupational therapies).
Emerson must have decided to be sympathetic, because the rest of this week has been filled with hopeful signs. For instance, we went to a sushi restaurant on Tuesday and out of desperation to keep him happy and quiet, I gave him a spoonful of miso soup. He actually ate it - and then cried for more...and more. After gulping down a good portion and chewing on the place mat for a while, he leaned his head on the edge of the table and started falling asleep! Since then he has eaten a good portion of oatmeal and some banana...which is saying a lot for a baby who gagged dramatically at the mere sight of them just days before.
At his visual therapist appointment on Wednesday, he actually crept forward on his stomach a little and has been attempting it (albeit with limited success) ever since. This whole week he has also been practicing his raspberries with his mouth - even giving "zerberts" on my arms for comedic effect. He's starting to attempt the "b" and "m" sounds, and held his arms up purposely when I asked if he wanted up.
The sleeping front is still not so great, but he did go to bed at 10pm once this week, which sounds horrible...but in comparison to the past few weeks, it's a freakin' miracle.
I know these sound like...well, like ridiculously simple baby steps. But these days, we are all about the simple joys.