Monday, September 28, 2009

Squealia and the First Toothbrush

            The plunge into fatherhood took me literally into the water over the weekend. We drove out to a nearby hot springs complete with baby-swim-diapers and plunked our daughter into the warm swimming pool where she splashed and interrupted the quiet soaking of the other patrons with happy squeals. Ah, Squealia, still our little screamer.
            The last time we drove her out to the hot springs she was barely a month old, and never touched the water. What a significant difference! I marveled at how much she’s grown in such a short time. And she keeps making new steps constantly.
            She’s had a number of graduations over the last week. First, and most important, we’ve changed her car seat to the one-year-old forward-facing deluxe model. Now I can simply tilt the rear-view mirror and look straight into her smiling face. Every time she sees me staring at her in the backseat she breaks into a huge grin.
            “Hi, my Sweetie!” I’ll say to her.
            “Aaaaaah!” she’ll squeal in delight.
            I’m most certain that she’s utterly thrilled at this transportation development, but the thing she’s most enjoyed this last week is the introduction of a toothbrush.
            All these months she’s always marveled every time I brush my teeth, and tries grabbing at my toothbrush eagerly. When she does grab it, she’ll put the other end in her mouth and stare at me with the other end of the toothbrush in my mouth a mere six inches away. Priceless.
            So there I was buying her a massive box of diapers when I walked past the toothbrush section of the store, and I thought, “Hey, it’s time!” So I bought the “Tigger” brush and later that day I pulled it out of the box.
            “Look, Celia! A toothbrush that’s all yours!”
            She squealed happily and latched onto it. After giving her a few minutes of playing with the brush, and chewing on every last inch, I tried prying it from her fingers and using it to brush her teeth. No such luck.
            As soon as I pulled the toothbrush out of her little fingers her face turned scarlet red and she burst into humongous wails. “Okay, okay, here’s your toothbrush back. Here you go, Sweetie.”
            With the toothbrush back in her hands, Celia quieted instantly.
            The rest of the day, the toothbrush was never far from her side. She might place it down to play with another toy, but quickly scooped it up again. In fact, she even took it to the bath with her, and later she brought it with her to bed.
            Needless to say, this morning, I had to use my own toothbrush to brush her teeth, rather than hers. I wonder if I should buy another one? One for brushing her teeth, and one for her to hold onto…? My daughter, the toothbrush-aholic.

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