Friday, May 20, 2011

The Five Steps of Grady Teething

Have you ever been stuck at a railroad crossing as the world's longest train went by?  First come the engines, about seventeen of them, then the box cars, the flat cars, the graffitied cars, the hobo cars, the circus cars, more engines, and, finally, the caboose.  Done?  No.  After ten minutes of nothing except clanging warning bells and flashing lights, along comes the Bugs Bunny manual locomotion thing with the teeter totter handle.  Get the picture?  That's Grady teething.

Like most things Grady does, teething is a slow, multi-stepped process.  So far, it's served him well.  He has beautiful, straight, and nicely spaced teeth.  His molars are the size of Chicklets.  His eye teeth make Twilight fans jealous.  He has a terrific smile.  But, it's come at a price.

Step One:  Giant Poop.  A nurse finally told us that no one really knows why kids get the runs when they teethe, but one theory is that teething causes drooling, and when kids swallow drool, it gives 'em the looseys.  Grady must drink drool by the bucket-load because phase 1 has us doing several loads of stinky laundry every day.  Last fall, when Grady really started teething in earnest, we couldn't figure out the cause of his diaper-bursting bombs.  We asked allergists, nurses, strangers at the supermarket, pediatricians, and veterinarians and no one could figure it out.  We took him off dairy without any results and finally had a stool sample taken to test for Giardia.  The results were, of course, negative.  With hundreds of dollars invested into the poop-investigation, he mysteriously got better.  And a week later he popped out two teeth.

Step Two:  Drool.  Grady drools like a Saint Bernard when he's teething.  The upside is that Grady is also a flirt who likes to give kisses.  Nothing funnier that watching people ask for a kiss, then try to back out when they see the drool coming.  You're a bad person if you turn down kisses from a one-year old, even if they are disgusting drool-smooches.

Step Three:  Rash.  Constant drooling gives our G-man a rash around his lips.  It makes him look like a gas-huffer.  A small, baby huffer.  I'm surprised his chest doesn't break out as well as much as it gets drool soaked.

Step Four:  Fussy, Fussy, Fussy.  Grady turns into a bear, doubled by the fact that we've taken away his pacifier.  His angry yell is that of a drunk Yankees fan after Jeter gets called out on a close strike three.

And, Step Five:  Teeth!  Last fall and winter they came like animals on the ark: in twos.  He was popping out rows of teeth weekly.  We were on pace to have a full set by Valentines' Day.  But, things slowed and now these last few remaining stragglers, late to the party, come in one at a time.  The caboose is in sight as, by our best guess, he only has between one and five left to come (we'd make terrible dentists).  It's been a slow and painful process *puts on sunglasses* kind of like pulling teeth.

No comments: