In the faculty room today, I let everyone know that Violet laughed for the first time yesterday, and somehow that led to talk about whether or not she’s using a pacifier (she’s not). That, in turn, led to some of the moms around the table sharing stories of baby-rearing techniques that have fallen out of favor. Apparently, some hospitals used to give babies sugar water if they were having trouble breastfeeding. (This would usually leave them disinterested in breast milk.) Another woman shared how her grandparents used to give her father root beer as an infant, and another said that her mother gave her peppermint schnapps whenever she had an upset stomach. Orange juice was another favorite infant beverage, and one mom was always taught that at six months, every kid should start drinking 2% milk, so that’s what she did with her son. She proclaimed, “I was a bad mother and I didn’t even know it!” It made me wonder what we’re doing to Violet that, in 10 or 20 years, we’ll look back on and ask, “What were we thinking?” This idea can be extended to so many other facets of daily life, it can leave you a little paralyzed if you think about it too much. In the end, I just keep telling myself (as I’ll be telling Violet in years to come) the following: never assume that you know everything about anything because then you might think you have nothing to learn, and that’s never true.
164 days old