I’ve been seriously slacking on posting over the past couple weeks and really have no excuse other than the fact that the weather has left me majorly unmotivated. This time of year always makes me super antsy to get outside and back into nature, while uninspired to do anything indoors. Anyone else out there in the same boat? But, our little peanut is nine months old today, so I had to pop on and at least write a monthly recap!
I wish I could say the past month has been an improvement from the previous one in terms of sickness, but unfortunately, it’s just been a continuation of ailments for Jackson. About a week and a half ago he was hit with the worst one yet–Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease! If you’re not familiar with this one, which I personally wasn’t until having a kid, it’s a nasty virus that can cause a blister-like rash on the hands, feet, and IN the mouth/throat, along with fever, runny nose, and sore throat. The rash doesn’t actually show up until a couple days after the onset of initial symptoms, so we had no idea he was dealing with this when the virus was at its peak.
The first clue he was sick again was a fever, which started over a weekend, coupled with unusual fussiness and a decreased appetite. Since Jackson had been dealing with a series of ear infections, I brought him back to the doctor that Monday to get him checked out. The diagnosis? His ear infection hadn’t cleared and needed to be treated with different antibiotics. Seriously?! I trudged back over to the pharmacy to fill the prescription and dutifully gave Jackson his first two doses, despite his kicking and screaming. I swear it was easier to give medication to our former cat!
I didn’t think much of the ear infection diagnosis until Monday evening, when the shit really hit the fan. Jackson was much harder than usual to get to sleep for the night and was drooling so excessively that he was coughing and choking. He also had zero interest in nursing after basically not eating all day. After finally getting him to sleep, he woke up at 12am crying intensely. He proceeded to cry inconsolably from midnight to about 6am, with a couple periods of sleep that lasted about 40 minutes each. Still no nursing. The Motrin we gave him did nothing to calm him down. Needless to say, it was by far the worst night we’ve had with Jackson to date. Since all of this happened at the same time that Jackson’s first tooth started coming in, and many of the symptoms (drooling, poor appetite, fussiness, mild fever) can be attributed to teething, I thought maybe teething was to blame, but his behavior seemed far too extreme to just be teething, or even an ear infection, honestly.
Although I had a hunch something more was at play, this all coincided with a big snow storm that hit Monday night into Tuesday (because, of course) so the doctor’s office and pretty much everything else was closed Tuesday. Fortunately, by Tuesday, Jackson’s behavior had improved quite a bit and it seemed like the worst was over, which was a huge relief to say the least. By Wednesday he was even better, aside from a mysterious rash that cropped up. Concerned that it might be a reaction to the new antibiotics, I brought him back into the pediatrician and saw a different doctor at the practice, who diagnosed Hand, Foot and Mouth. By then the telltale rash was visible and Jackson had sores lining his mouth and throat! The doctor said this can be more painful than strep, which explains why he was screaming all night and wouldn’t eat at all, our poor guy! I felt awful. At least we had an explanation that made sense.
A couple days after getting the Hand, Foot and Mouth diagnosis, Jackson developed pink eye. How, I have NO idea. He hadn’t been exposed to anyone other than me and David in over a week! Must have been the doctor’s office. By this point I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. This infection didn’t seem to bother or phase him at all and was easy to treat, so I guess if he had to have something, this wasn’t so bad. And that about takes us up to today in terms of sickness. Here’s to hoping this section of my ten month recap isn’t so lengthy!
Now, onto happier things…
Jackson’s feisty little personality is really starting to emerge, as is his awareness of who’s around and what’s going on. Now when I leave the room for even just a few seconds, he’ll start crying until I come back. Even when I’m in sight, if he’s not getting the kind of attention he wants, he will make it known! And if I take something away that he’s not done playing with yet, God forbid!, the tears ensure. But he’s also the happiest, most joyful and loving little boy and so fun to be around (most of the time).
Jackson is crawling, sort of. He still mostly goes backwards but finally figured out how to go forward, although he does it reluctantly. If he really wants something, he figures out a way! He still loves standing and can stand for quite a long time as long as he has something to hold onto for balance. He’s still babbling up a storm but hasn’t really said anything new.
As I mentioned earlier, Jackson’s first tooth has arrived! One of the front bottom teeth started to emerge a couple weeks ago and it’s sharp, let me tell you! I’m thinking other baby teeth can’t be far behind.
Sleep still sucks, to be honest. This goes without saying when Jackson was so sick and uncomfortable, but it’s still not great now that Jackson has recovered. It’s challenging to both get him to sleep and get him to stay asleep. He’s still in our room and has actually been sleeping in our bed for the past few weeks since he had been so fussy, but now I think he’s gotten used to the bed and doesn’t want to sleep anywhere else. As much as I enjoy cuddling with our little snuggle bug, we have to get him comfortable sleeping in his own bed again.
Jackson loves food, just like his mommy and daddy! He’s obsessed with the baby oat cereal we give him and always gobbles it up whenever we serve it. He also seems to love any puree that has apples in it, especially the apples and broccoli, which sounds like a bizarre combo. Although we’re still feeding him purees with a spoon, we’ve also started giving small pieces of soft solids that he can pick up and feed himself so that he gets used to the action and textures. So far we’ve given him banana, peas, avocado, brown rice, and sweet potato. He seems to like feeding himself, even if most of the food winds up in his bib or on the floor!
Despite the nursing setback during Jackson’s illnesses, I’m still breastfeeding. My aim is to keep it up until he’s one, if it works out. Just gonna go with the flow. We’ll see!
Here are some of the things we’re loving around here these days, in no particular order:
- Foam cubes: Last month I mentioned the foam playmat, which is still getting a ton of use, but David ordered a bunch more of the squares to piece together some cubes, and Jackson has been loving using them as support to stand and look out the window. So cute!
- Curious George plush: Good friends of ours gifted Jackson a giant plush Curious George soon after he was born and we recently pulled it back out. He got so excited! I’m not sure if it’s the size or his face or what but he’s loving him right now.
- Baby Buddy 1st toothbrush teether: My mom picked this up a while back and we gave it to Jackson once we realized his first tooth was poking through. I’m not sure if it offers any relief for teething but he loves sucking on it. Babby Buddy also makes other teething products that I’m going to give a try.
- Sing Along with Elmo book: Another goodie picked up by my mom. Each page corresponds to a colored button on the side of the book that plays a tune when you push it. Pretty ingenious. It’s an old book so I couldn’t find it online but here’s something similar.
- Grabbing things: If we set Jackson up with a laundry basket full of clothes or sit him in front of his little bookcase full of books, he’s a happy camper! He has a ball pulling all the clothes out of the basket or the books off the shelf. You’d think this would get old but it hasn’t so far.
That’s about it. Excited to see what’s in store for month ten! Until then, here are some of my favorite shots from the past few weeks: