Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Puffs: Xanax of Snacks

Henry is a screamer. When he doesn't get what he wants, he delivers shrieks of disapproval at a pitch and decibel level that rivals the sound of nails on a chalkboard.

"Your complaints have been registered with senior management," I tell him.

Unacceptable, Moo Cow!

I'm about to lose my shit on you, Moo Cow.

At Thanksgiving I noticed my family cringing at his screeches while I wasn't, and I realized either one of two things is true: 

1) Humans can truly habituate themselves to anything, and I'm used to and therefore less bothered by Henry's monkey calls; or

2) Said monkey calls have actually damaged my hearing, and I can no longer hear sounds at that particular frequency.

I think it's #2, don't you? 

Anyway, I never thought I would be the type of parent who fed my child puffs or Cheerios to shut him up. First, puffs are not really food, and I'd prefer to stay off that oh-so-American path of providing instantly gratifying processed goodies for as long as possible.

Second, Rayne and I are both champion emotional eaters (and I doubt we are alone), and I hesitate to teach our son at such an early age that when he is upset about something, food will comfort him.

But holy HELL, the sound emanating from his mouth is simply disproportionate to the size of his 18-ish-pound body.

The noise is so awe-inspiringly painful, I'm convinced my body releases an unnecessary amount of adrenaline in a rush of fight-or-flight reactivity. Stress-induced cortisols and free radicals course through my body wreaking havoc.

At lunch or dinner, I can't seem to prepare his food fast enough; I always end up throwing a couple of Happy Baby puffs on his tray. He eats them or throws them on the ground for Hudson; either way, he's mercifully quiet.

He's mostly good in the car, but when I'm trapped in a steel box hurtling through the air at 60 mph with a shrieking infant, there's only one thing to do: puffs.

Even on the playground, lest my sweet child call too much attention to my bad parenting, I've succumbed a few times to the silencing power of PUFFS.

Tyrrany of the Puffs

Puffs are like a fast-acting dose of Xanax without the medicinal content, the side effects, or, you know, the drugging your baby.

So, really, it comes down to this: Puffs for Henry or Xanax for Mommy. I think the choice is clear.

I had to ditch my terrible commenting system, but I didn't want to lose the comments, so here they are: