Friday, March 5, 2010

Bobo À Go-go

As I was looking through recent photos of Westley*, I noticed that one little thing kept "ruining" the shots. In a solid third of the pictures, Westley's mouth is partially or completely obscured by a pacifier, or "bobo" as it's known in our house.

Bobo here...
...bobo there...
...bobo, bobo everywhere!

I don't really object to Westley using a pacifier. Except that I kind of do. Honestly, I'm still kind of torn on the whole "to pacifier or not to pacifier" thing. On the one hand, Westley really wanted to suck all the time when he was a baby, and I think the pacifier helped him sleep better and for more hours at a time. Awesome, right? On the other hand, both Westley's pediatrician and my midwife gave me "why would you want to do that?" answers when I asked about introducing a pacifier. If I'd been wearing my ovaries on the outside at the time, I might have said, "So my tits can get a fucking break!" but I wasn't, and didn't. I do think the bobo saved a little of my sanity; it meant that, once in a while, Westley would nap somewhere other than on my body. But that's awfully selfish, isn't it? And I do kind of worry about setting him up for a future of chain smoking and nail-biting and binge-eating.

So I'm a pacifier fence-sitter. I'm paci-curious.

If I'm truly honest with myself, however, I have to admit that my biggest issue with the bobo is aesthetic. Of course, I completely dread bobo-weaning. It seems worse that weaning-weaning, somehow. But we'll cross that rickety-ass-bridge-over-a-lake-of-cyborg-shark-infested-lava when we come to it. Right now, I'm just sick to death of looking at (not to mention looking for) the cursed thing!

I mean, it's not cute. Especially not the one Westley uses. I made the mistake once of staring into the hallow bottom of the bobo while Westley was sucking on it. At first watching the action of his mouth compressing the paci nipple got me thinking about squids and jellies and pleasant underwater things. But the view quickly turned into a Lovecraftian glass-bottom boat tour as I imagined the same action taking place with my nipple. Definitely not cute.

The bobo really cramps the whole "big boy" vibe that Westley is starting to give off. As much as I'm glad that he has something other than my breast that helps him when he's overly tired or sick or hurt, I feel like he's too old to be using a pacifier. It's especially weird to me that Westley and the five-month-old baby girl I nanny for use the exact same type of pacifier. I mean, shouldn't he have graduated from the "newborn" model, at least?

Of course, I know that despite what I think when I look at him (or lift him), Westley's not a big boy. I'm reminded of this every time I take him to the park or to play gym and watch the four-year-olds charge around. Westley still has a lot of baby in him, and that's great! As challenging as two-year-old Westley can be, I'm in no kind of hurry for him to grow up. The pacifier won't be around forever. I know he'll give up the bobo when he's good and ready to give it up.

I just wish he'd take it out of his adorable mouth a little more often. That sweet little-boy smile won't be around forever, either.

*I promise that I have every intention of uploading all of these photos to Flickr. I am completely aware (and more than a slightly embarrassed) that my most recent photos are from Halloween last year.