The Sweet Potato Incident (An Introduction to Solids)

I’m convinced that half of all milestones occur because Mama gets bored.

Today was boring. SO boring. Six months is a fun age … kinda. They are sturdy. They are involved. They are entertaining. But they also want to be entertained. And sometimes you don’t want to be “on”. Sometimes you just want to sit on the couch and drink a cup of hot coffee.

I am obsessed with hot coffee. Lately, hot coffee has been elusive: I pour a cup, but get distracted. Every sip of coffee I have in this house is cold.

I’ve been doing designated “Me” time for the Babe and me where we do our own thing. She chills with some toys on her mat, I heat up a cup of coffee and dick around online. But she’s on to me. She’s savvy now, no longer appeased by shiny wooden toys. She wants the Harbinger of Fun. She wants Mama.

Sometimes I let her protest. I do. I’m probably terrible for doing that, depending on the parenting philosophy you adhere to. My personal parenting philosophy is pretty basic: Don’t Raise an Asshole. It’s simple, really. Acknowledge others. Be kind and empathetic. Don’t scream in a crowded place. And don’t expect the world to entertain you – make your own fun.

Sometimes it works. She pauses, feels around, grabs a toy, and goes back to chewin’. But lately there’s been a lot of frustration. Wee Girl wants to MOVE. She wants to EMBRACE. She wants to GRASP and CHEW and PULL on her terms. But she can barely roll. Her inability to crawl or walk is the bane of her existence. She’s no longer satiated by kicking it on the floor with Sophie le Girafe, Patsy Cline playing in the background and the pups roaming about.

I went against my better judgment and held her. But that wasn’t doing it. She didn’t want me. She just wanted MORE.

This is how Peanut and I found ourselves covered in sweet potato this afternoon.

I had steamed sweet potato a few nights before and froze it, anticipating that I’d be using it soon enough. The experience was messy and adorable. I let her feel and squish her way through the meal. She was wary at first, but gradually got into it. Afterward, I plopped her in the tub and hosed her down as the dogs mopped the floor.

It felt like we’d crossed an invisible border. We were in a new land. It wasn’t that she was no longer a newborn – she hasn’t been a newborn for quite some time. It was that, with the introduction of solids, she is closer than ever to being a kid. These days are flying by, completely out of my grasp. There will always be coffee, but there won’t always be a baby Peanut.