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Teething: Little White Pearls Of Misery

by Charlotte Walker

A few days ago I was so excited to notice that Ava had two little white ‘teggies’ poking out of her lower gum. In fact, I was ecstatic! I don’t know why, it’s not like it’s a surprise; humans do tend to have teeth and the usual place to spot them appearing is in their mouths! Nonetheless, it was a joyful moment, one that warranted me to text my husband at work just to inform him of the revelation and then subtly mention it to every person I saw for the next 24 hours… “guess what, Ava can grow teeth!”

If only I knew what I was celebrating; in hindsight, I was saying ‘yippee’ to waking in the night again and ‘yay’ to a grizzly and sometimes inconsolable baby in the day… my poor girl is now contending with sore gums, red cheeks, red butt and lots and lots of dribble! And we’re only at the very start of it (…oh gosh! WE’RE ONLY AT THE START!!)

I didn’t know what was happening when Ava kept waking last night! She’s usually a good sleeper so any waking in the night, especially more than once, is out of character for her. The first wake-up I just accepted; she niggled, she fed a bit and she went back to sleep. The next couple of times, paired with some inconsolable crying, really took me by surprise. By the forth time, I was totally in denial… surely she hasn’t just woken a forth time during the night? Surely it’s not only 20 minutes that have passed since the last wake-up call? I refused to believe it. The only explanation that I could conjure up was that it was really 9am and something must’ve happened to the daylight; maybe the sun just didn’t rise today or there’s a very thick smog outside? Yeah right! It was 4.30am and my baby was crying again. Those bloody teeth! I knew, though, that she wasn’t doing it to be mean, my poor baby must’ve been uncomfortable.

It broke my heart to think she was suffering. So we had some good, comforting momma-and-daughter cuddles, I sang her a lullaby and I fed her back to calmness and tranquility… it was at that moment, whilst watching her feed, that I just looked at her little angelic face and thought ‘what a sweetheart, I don’t care how often she wakes me, she’s worth it!” It was at that moment of pure perfection that she decided to use her gums and the tips of her newly-appearing teeth to clamp down on me as hard as she could… the little monkey!

Although I woke up feeling tired today, it has been a beautiful day weather-wise; the sun has been shining, the world has been bursting with colour and it’s made me feel very happy and uplifted. We visited a local national park today, for a stroll and some sunbathing… we even spotted a few wild deer, although I’m a bit dubious around those feisty beasts now as it was only a few weeks ago that I was ‘attacked’ by a wild deer; it stomped right up to me and gummed my arm! Now that I think of it, Ava has been displaying a very similar behaviour recently…!?

Anyway, Ava has generally been a very smiley and sociable little girl today, but she has been a bit ‘off’ at some times too. Jekyll and Hyde springs to mind. Mostly, she has been the fun, sweet little girl we know so well (think smiles, gurgles, giggles, baby talk and blowing bubbles). At other times I had to question when we let the Hulk join our family! More than anything, she’s fought napping a little bit today and then she’s gotten upset with herself over it. We did offer her Calpol this evening to help her out a little and chilled teething rings and teething toys have been used well. She’s loved drinking cool water over these past couple of days too.

Reading back, the teething ordeal doesn’t sound too horrendous, but any change in her behaviour isn’t nice… I’ll be happy when she’s back to her normal self. Right now, she is sound asleep in her Moses basket, like butter wouldn’t melt (and with that amount of dribble it wouldn’t have time to, believe me!) She really is such a sweetie. I will blog again soon when I feel I have something worthy of sharing and to any parent dealing with teething babies; I hope it’s not too bad for you and your little one. Those bloody teeth!

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