My children used dummies until they were practically young adults (binkys for you yanks!)
OK, I'm exaggerating, but it sure seemed like my life was governed by dummies for ages. I should have given them up earlier, but as the years went by they became harder and harder to extricate from our lives.
I wasn’t even going to offer my first born a dummy. I was dead set against it. I wasn’t going to have one of those kids you see on the high street with a runny nose and a dummy stuck in their mouth like a plug in a bath tub. Oh, no, not me.
But when I brought Emily home from the hospital, she weighed barely five pounds. She ate every few hours. In between she would cry. A lot.
It was my father who first suggested a dummy. There’s nothing wrong with dummies he said. A dummy would soothe her.
So I went out and bought one. And when Emily predictably opened her mouth for her afternoon wail, I seized the moment and plunged the dummy in to her mouth. I waited for her to spit it out, but she didn’t. Instead, her tiny mouth enveloped it with the suction of a vacuum cleaner. The next day I went to Mothercare and bought one in every available colour and shape.
When Alexandra came along 18 months later, Emily was still attached to her dummy. The day after we arrived home from the hospital, the health visitor stopped by. When she was ready to leave, a snotty-nosed Emily crept into the room, dummy in mouth, and grunted at her. The health visitor was not impressed.
There’s been a big change in her life, I argued. Now is not the time to take away her dummy.
The problem is, there is never a good time. Every time we thought about taking away the dummies (Alexandra had picked up her big sister’s habit), I had another baby. Or we moved country. Some years we did both.
The “dummy fairy” finally came last year. We put the dummies on the window sill with a note to give them to a family who needed them.
I think she gave them to the Wife in the North.
This post was written by Susanna, an Expat Mums Blog founding contributor. You can read more at her blog, A Modern Mother.
Photo credit: petite_sphinx