Sunday, January 22, 2012

Rice, Rice, Baby!

Ok, forgive the less than original title.  I was traumatized by the event that lead to this post, so my creative juices weren't exactly flowing.  Tonight (January 22, 2012), Arwen ate her first bites of rice cereal. She did great and was happy as a clam. Me? Not so much.  I know this was just one of many steps she will be taking away from being dependent on me, and I'm not handling it so well. Arwen was exclusively breast fed for six months, so the idea that she can now rely on someone besides me for her nutrition is just about more than I can handle.

My mother, of course, has wanted Arwen to start on rice cereal for months now, but the recommendation now, especially for breast fed babies, is to wait until the six month mark. I guess technically we went a couple of days early, but Arwen's six month doctor's appointment was scheduled for the 23rd, and Jay and I decided it might be good for us to try the cereal with her before the doctor appointment so that we could discuss any issues with the doctor (the doctor had cleared her for cereal at four months but was 100% behind our waiting until six months).   I knew Arwen was ready to start solid food--she was staring at us every time we ate, grabbing for food and silverware--but it was still nerve-wracking.  Jay, of course, demanded to give Arwen her first bites of cereal (and rightly so!), and she was just tickled about it.

I'm mixing the rice cereal with breast milk, and that is causing me a little anxiety, too, since I will need a couple extra ounces of milk for that purpose every day.  Right now, I pump three times a day: once in the morning after I nurse Arwen and before I go to work, and then twice at work.  Pumping has gone really well (I was terrified at first that my milk would dry up), but I pretty much get exactly as much as I need--no extra.  So, anyway, it is a concern.  But hopefully, it will all work out.  Breastfeeding has been successful for us so far, and I would like to continue at least until Arwen is a year old.

Next, we will start with stage one vegetables.  I plan to try to make my own baby food, but we will talk to the doctor tomorrow and then see how it goes.  My baby girl is growing up!