September 28, 2004

Regression Analysis

The 2/3 Express train annoys most New Yorkers who have to endure it's way-too-loud passing on the subway platform. Yet our kid spent the first seven months of her life either sleeping through it, being startled then uninterested, or just staring at it as it rumbled by.

Then on Saturday, the 2/3 sent her into a head-to-toe-shaking, white-faced-with-terror panic attack. Also, she's started hating the park swing; before, she'd swing for half an hour--plenty of time to go get a Diet Coke at the deli [KIDDING]. She's very clingy, doesn't want to hold her bottle anymore, she seems to be regressing in various ways.

On the other hand, she just started crawling like crazy; the other day, she pulled herself up on her feet on the edge of the couch; and she climbs over/to everything as if the world's her obstacle course.

Brazelton writes (where's that book? Oh, other city.) about touchpoints, big leaps in development are somehow connected (preceded? accompanied?) by what looks like backsliding as a kid tries to cope with her new repertoire. Maybe I'd better head over to B&N and read up.


I have to confirm your observation: in my experience with my daughter, whenever she would be working on some new skill, from rolling over, to speech, to potty training, she would seem to have a harder time behavior-wise, and more notably, have a harder time sleeping through the night. In each case it has passed easily, and reminds me of my sleepless nights after the first few days at a new job. I'm sure your little monkey is just getting used to all the new jobs.

I don't know what the "experts" say but it seems to me that the adage "ignorace is bliss" applies. As a child's brain develops, he can comprehend or imagine or notice new things that he didn't before. And new things are frightening until you get used to them.

Have you considered that it might be teething? My daughter gets really weird when she's cutting teeth. She gets totally unrecognizeable in her personality, behavior, mood, etc., then when the teeth finally start breaking through, she goes back to her regular sane self. Ibuprofen helps a great deal. Thankfully, her 2 year molars - the last ones - have finally broken through, and I believe that is the end of the baby teeth. YEA!

Yeah, "She's teething again" is the "Wolf!" in our house. We've had at least three teething false alarms in the last two months, where her fussiness, her fountain-sized drool stream, and her frantic gnawing on __[insert anything here]__ were because her next teeth were finally coming in.

I'll believe it when she chomps down on my finger, I guess.

Wonder Weeks also details this in terms of neurological development, in a week-by-week format.

Every time daughter L. started throwing up last winter, I would gamely say "maybe she's just teething and she's got an excess of drool."

This never turned out to be true, but denial seems to be a v. basic parental urge.

But: the sleep disruption & new fears all came along at the various times: when daughter L. started walking, adding speech, eating solids (not nec. in that order), etc.

The fact that during disrupted sleep periods I could make self-assured (and self-reassuring) noises about appropriate development, blah blah, was worth the price of Brazelton in paperback.

I'm concerned about protecting the ears of my soon-to-arrive baby when on the train. Do they make appropriate ear-plugs that are safe for baby use?

Just like the boy who cried wolf, the one time we didn't believe it, we got bit.

The kid suddenly turns up with three new teeth at once yesterday.

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