In the distant future, little O will take his first steps, speak his first words, and commit his first traffic violation. Most of these will be great moments. In the meantime, I would like to celebrate a few notable first experiences that occurred over the past three weeks.
First song: Little O had his first exposure to music nearly three days into his life. While he certainly heard my pitchy voice during his brief hospital stay, I am currently referring to his first exposure to recorded music. On the way home, I warned my wife not to turn on the radio, in fear that my child might hear a song by Pink and forever associate that with music. I would rather the boy hear dogs barking as a harmonica plays in the background. In the end, we had little control over Little O’s first song. As we walked into a local sandwich shop, we could all hear Cake’s Short Skirt Long Jacket playing in the background. Well played, sandwich shop.
First artificial nipple: Whenever I hear the term “artificial nipple,” I have to remind myself that the term has nothing to do with my chest. When I was an infant, I underwent surgery on my lungs and was left with two nubby scars on the far sides of my chest. One of the nubs looks like a third nipple. In fact, if someone would have asked me about “nipple confusion” years ago, I would have said that it occurred at all of my childhood pool parties. Now I understand that nipple confusion is caused by the use of bottles, nipple shields, pacifiers or any other artificial nipple while the infant is developing the ability to breastfeed. I know this because new fathers and mothers are reminded at every turn that nipple confusion can wreak havoc on breast feeding. Well, we caved in and started using a pacifier. Bring on the nipple confusion.
Smile: No, this was not a real smile. This was likely a contorted facial expression caused by the baby’s stomach gas. Still, if this were the father’s gas, there would be no smiles. His charming facial expression was quite the accomplishment.
Photo shoot: A charming bully photographer took my baby’s picture at the hospital and then attempted to sell it to us for a gazillion dollars. Luckily, we had a few rogue photographers taking pictures as the baby posed, so we were less dependent on the photographer. Our pictures turned out great. My baby is a natural.