Introducing babies to solids is so scary as a parent. For some reason, this was the milestone of all milestones that really stuck with me, and I obsessed over. We decided to wait to introduce solids a week or two before his 6 month appointment. My hopes were that I would be able to discuss any concerns with his doctor at that appointment and this would give him time to test the waters a little with some baby cereal. Of course, he had a love-hate relationship with it. Mostly hate.
Baby 1: Parents: 0
I thought I would get creative and make my own baby food. “He will love it!” I thought. Wrong. Oh so wrong. I definitely didn’t puree it enough to be similar to a Stage 1 food, and he puked. A lot. I’ll spare you the video that started off with a happy baby making cute faces to a baby profusely vomiting all over himself.
Baby: 2 Parents: 0
We started introducing food every 3 days, like his pediatrician recommended. He was doing great, until we started to notice some rashes developing on his body. We thought he was having a reaction to the sweet potatoes we had given him. Well, we stopped that immediately. The doctor was worried he was going to become an allergy kid, since he had already had eczema as a little baby, too. We stayed away from the sweet potatoes for quite some time.
Baby 3: Parents: 0
Then came the day we introduced peanut butter to his cereal – one of the bigger food milestones. He LOVED it. It made us so happy to see him enjoying food. Later that night he threw up. A lot. We talked with the doctor, and she said to keep him away from it for a few weeks and reintroduce it later on.
Baby 4: Parents: 0
We worked through what felt like months of Stage 1 food. At this point I was nervous to introduce Stage 2, worried he would have more reactions through rashes or vomiting. Once exploring a little more, I was very selective about what Stage 2 foods I introduced and was very cautious when introducing the combination foods. We felt like he was finally getting the hang of foods, and we were seeing less reactions with it all. I think his daycare was probably getting annoyed of us at this point, as I was very specific about what he could/couldn’t have at school.
Baby 4: Parents: 1
We finally got the Stage 3 milestones, now 9 months of age. I felt like I was going crazy, watching all of my friends on social media feeding their kids a variety of table food at this point and their children loving it. This is where I needed to stop the comparison and just focus on my little guy. Many friends had their opinions about Stage 3 foods, and told us it was a waste of money. I knew they probably had a point, but for some reason I needed to follow the stages to ease him into it. He really struggled with the chunks of food. He would gag each time he got a small chunk of something in his mouth. Again, sometimes even vomiting.
Baby 5: Parents: 1
At this point, we were getting really discouraged. I was reading many blogs, asking friends/family, and speaking with our pediatrician. I wanted to get ahead of this issue if it was going to be something he needed therapy for or if I needed to buy those special textured spoons to help with the gagging. I started more baby led weaning at this point. Some days this was a great route, and sometimes it triggered his gag reflex. I was seeing progress and that was all that mattered.
Baby 5: Parents: 2
As I started to see more success, I began to add more table food and Stage 3 type foods to his diet. It was almost like a switch went off and finally he started to LOVE food. He was trying all different types of food and eating most of the same foods that my husband and I ate. Phew. What a sigh of relief. This was the sweet spot to be able to see his excitement as a new taste or texture was introduced.
Baby 5: Parents: 3
Based on the score, our little guy may have dominated us during the battle, but we definitely won the war. He is a fantastic eater now, and has either grown out of the food reactions or they were just a coincidence with something else going on at that time. He no longer has issues with sweet potatoes or peanut butter. The big picture here is that it is hard to get out of the bubble of worry about milestones and keeping up with other babies/kids your child’s age. Just focus on what is best for you child. I know it is easier said than done, especially when you’re living these worries every day. Looking back, I’m pretty sure no one cares when he finally ate a banana. And no one discusses those types of things when kids get older. It just doesn’t matter anymore.