Being Present in the Dark


The room is dark and my eyelids flutter. My baby, who is in my arms, squirms and calls out, shrieking, then whimpering. I startle awake and gaze down at him, taking in his round cheeks and elfin nose. His eyes are closed, but out of exhaustion, not relaxation. Cries of pain and discomfort slip from his mouth, no matter how much I hug or rock him. His teeth are coming in and even medicine isn’t quite enough.

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Teething Bites

Text: "Teething Bites / We'll Eat You Up, We Love You So" Picture: Cartoon shark holding up a fin

The scourge of teething has darkened our door once again. And if that sounds overdramatic, let me assure you that it is not at all.

Sprout started teething quite early, around five months. He showed all of the classical signs: drooling like a waterfall, chomping on his hands, and slight stomach crud. Every day, we would check to see if there was any progress made, if those little white bumps were any closer to poking through. We applied Ora-gel religiously, hoping to find a way to help him sleep better.

Unfortunately, it was more than two months until we saw the first tooth emerge. The others took their sweet time as well, sprouting from his gums like the world’s slowest, hardest seedlings. While there was some pain, especially just before they poked through, it didn’t affect his mood too badly. He was a little cranky here and there, but nothing vastly out of the ordinary.

Much to our relief, there was a brief reprieve.

Then came the molars.

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