Friday, May 14, 2010

9 month growth spurt?

Everyone always talks about growth spurts, but I've never noticed Will going through any. Or rather, I guess I've never noticed him not going through a growth spurt, what with his constantly wanting to nurse. Ever since the moment he was born, it seems like he has been on one perpetual growth spurt.

This past week though, I did actually notice something. He'd been sleepy all day and at dinner time, he practically inhaled all of his food. Since I make his food, I just sort of guess about how much to give him, and I don't have a good idea of how that compares to store-bought portions. What he ate that night (for starters) were 2 avocado cubes (about 1/2 an avocado), a rice cube, and 2 pear cubes. Oh, and a ton of Cheerios. I mean, a lot of Cheerios. So many, in fact, that I almost googled "how many Cheerios is too many Cheerios to feed your 9-month old" but I was afraid of the answer. I would put several Cheerios on his tray and he would pounce at them--shoving them in his mouth, chewing them up, and reaching for more. And while I had fed him his avocado and such, he was all business. Tracking the spoon with his whole head and opening his mouth wide.

As soon as he was done with all that, he looked at me very fiercely, grabbed the spoon out of my hand, and banged it on the high chair tray while saying, "MMMmmmmm" through pursed lips. It was actually really cute. But it was clear to me that he was still hungry. So I mashed up some more avocado and rice, and he ate that all too-- smacking his lips when he was done. I wondered if I should give him yet more food, but was kind of worried that his little tum tum would burst. So I gave him a bath and took him up to his room, where he nursed ravenously and then slept for 12 hours straight.

In addition to eating more food than he typically does, I think he was probably nursing more for a few days as well. I didn't think it would impact my appetite or calorie expenditure, but there were about 2 days when I was seriously, freakishly, out of control, crazy-hungry. I am generally always hungry and often wake up in the night hungry even after having eaten a ridiculous amount of food throughout the day, but this was over the top even for me. At one point I tried to estimate how many calories I'd consumed during the day and stopped counting at 3,000 because I was kind of ashamed of myself (though also still hungry). I'd probably walked 3 miles that day, plus it was shortly after the marathon, so I thought the hunger might be because partially because of that as well.

As it was happening, I didn't know if this was a growth spurt or just the new normal. I googled "is there a 9-month growth spurt" and didn't come up with much... one of the top hits was some BabyCenter discussion that just made me feel bad because I don't have my kid on a "schedule" of bottles and napping, etc. Things have kind of settled down by now though. Will is still eating and nursing heartily, but he doesn't seem ravenous as he did those few days.

It feels like my milk supply definitely went up to accommodate those days of rapid growth. The result is that I'm producing tons of milk right now, and he isn't nursing as much as he did during the spurt. It feels like I'm getting a plugged duct again, so hopefully that will work itself out without getting too painful.

We celebrated the growth spurt by walking over to the consignment store at Lincoln Square Mall and getting a bunch of new (well, new to Will) duds for the summer. I assume I will cry (as per usual) when I go through his drawers and pack up the things that no longer fit him.

Thanks for reading!


Meghan said...

I came across your blog from Stand & Deliver and I've really enjoyed reading through some of the entries! My son is 7.5 months old so it is nice to see the potential developmental changes coming up for him.

Don't fret, my son isn't on any type of schedule either although I did kind of worry at one point as well. For us I find it more natural for us to go with the flow of what his specific needs are that day. Especially with breastfed demand fed babies. That said there were times when I felt guilty and wondered if I should be getting on a schedule. Whenever I begin to doubt what I am doing I just remind myself he is happy and growing well!

~ Meghan

amypfan said...

Making tons of milk? Ha, you should see my deep freeze.

Seriously, way to go, Will (and Mommy!).