Monday, February 20, 2012

The Tale of the Two-Year Molars (or: Things they don't tell you before becoming a parent #27):

As anyone who has ever had a child can attest, most people tend to be free with their advice giving, warranted or not. This can happen to any parent, but mostly to pregnant women. Everyone from friends and family to perfect strangers feel the need to tell you how you should raise your children and what you can look towards when your precious bundle arrives. They do this as though you, a well-educated, normal member of society have never come in contact with a baby before, as though you will likely not have the first trace of a clue what to do when your baby arrives (motherly instincts? not you!) and they are there to save you from yourself. Keep in mind, none of these pieces of advice or little anecdotes will be positive in anyway what-so-ever. You must learn quickly to take every word uttered with a grain of salt and follow your instincts.

People like to regale their listeners with horror stories of no sleep and no showers and fuzzy teeth for lack of brushing. I will be the first to admit that I was blessed with a happy and content baby from day one. He was never one that needed to be held all the time, he never cried endlessly, and since he was two-months old has gone to bed at 7:30 pm and slept until 7:30 the next morning. He is two-years-old now and that is still his regular routine. Even in the first days, I never had a problem showering or finding a couple minutes to brush my teeth in the morning. My little boy is a happy, independent kid and I fully recognize the blessing that he is. It is also not lost on me that this could possible mean I'm in for it when we decide to have a 2nd one...

That being said, we've hit the two-year mark and discovered a secret story people don't tell you. I don't know why people have no problem telling the 7-month pregnant lady "You'll never sleep or brush your teeth again" (totally untrue) or "the grass isn't always greener, you know" (a lady with two kids actually said this to me at the grocery store) but hide the true scary Tale of Two-Year Molars.

Yes, I am officially stating that two-year molars are worse than childbirth, and they aren't even my molars coming in. The two-year molars began waging their war in the Weber household about mid-January. I read a post on a mommy message board that said "you only think teething is bad until you get to the two-year molars." She couldn't have been more right. Two-year molars make you question your life's decisions up to this point and wonder if God is perhaps punishing you for something you did wrong earlier in your life. Random temper-tantrums are not uncommon, mealtime has become a battlefield, and get ready for some serious clingyness.

I've heard that teeth breaking through the gums is among the worst pain a person experiences in their lifetime, we just don't remember it. This is especially true for molars. With that in mind I feel so awful for my poor baby. His mouth must be in so much pain. And he's hungry, but eating is tantamount to torture some days. Whenever I start getting frustrated because he's throwing a fit, I have to remind myself that he is in a tremendous amount of pain and he just doesn't know how to express that.

There is no moral to my story, I suppose. Could be stranger shouldn't given unsolicited advise... could be if you are given unsolicited advise, just nod and smile and tell them to shove it (in your head, of course)... could be I just want this to serve as a community tale, to help someone else going through the same thing to realize she isn't alone, or better yet, vice versa, that someone will tell me I'm not alone and that I'm not a terrible mother for giving my child oatmeal and string cheese for two meals a day a couple days a week and hoping pediasure will take care of the rest.

After all, we are in this whole Parenthood thing together, right?

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