At Georgia's three month appointment, our pediatrician said, "The next time I see you, I want you to have tried giving her a little rice cereal. Not much, just a tablespoon thinned with breast milk." His reasoning is the iron content of my breastmilk is dropping and the cereal is fortified and blah blah blah rice cereal.
I'm being weird about it. For a few weeks, I'd be at the store, go to buy a box of the cereal, stare at all my choices, handle the boxes, put one in my cart, then ditch it a few aisle later. I've managed to get some home at this point, but it sits on the shelf in the pantry and the only thing I've done with it is give it the side eye from time to time.
At Georgia's four month appointment, I had to admit that we hadn't tried with the cereal yet. I really like my pediatrician and I try not to dismiss the advice of any doctor I trust and like, but I also think we have to pay attention those feelings the grip us and make moving forward difficult.
Part of my reluctance comes from tummy issues myself for a long, long time and I worry that Georgia will inherent them. Part of it comes from a feeling that spoon feeding is a hassle best avoided. And part of me feels like she just isn't ready for anything other than breastmilk.
Today was Georgia's 5 month appointment. She's nearly 16 pounds, 26 inches tall and by every other measure, she's growing beautifully. And she still hasn't had any rice cereal. My pediatrician shrugged his shoulders and said if she doesn't have anything but breastmilk by the time she's six months, that's fine, and something deep inside of me relaxed.
I think at the heart of all of this is a reluctance to push Georgia through her milestones. Out and about, people ask, "Is she teething? Is she talking? Is she sitting up yet?" And I know it's right that babies should grow and change and the alternative to development is not a good one.
But this little baby did not come easily into our lives and as I look down at her in my arms, I wonder to myself "What if this is my only baby?" I just don't want to rush through these weeks and months and years.