Last Monday, Anna got really cranky in the afternoon. I spent a few hours just holding her and watching TV with her and William, since she would cry if I put her down. This was unusual. She’s usually a very good-natured kind of baby spending hours laying on the floor or sitting in her bouncy seat cooing and gurgling and drooling all over any toys within her reach. She finally fell asleep and I was able to get dinner on.
Some time after she woke up and before I bathed her, she pooped. I went to give her a bath after getting William to bed (who has suddenly and inexplicably decided that baths are miserable and awful experiences—this after 2 years of begging me to bathe him several times a day!). When I removed Anna’s diaper I found it full of baby pooh and, right in the middle, a round, plump, and perfectly intact raisin. This struck me as odd considering that Anna is 5 months old and hasn’t been given the go-ahead for solids yet, and even if she had, I wouldn’t be starting the toothless baby on whole raisins. Her 2½-year-old brother, on the other hand, loves raisins and eats them whenever he can. In fact, he is often given baggies of raisins and animal crackers as a breakfast-time treat to keep him occupied while I shower. Well, I’m guessing he decided to share his raisins with his adorable little sister one morning and that would explain the discomfort that led Anna to cry for hours and then pass a solid raisin in her pooh. My first response to this discovery was to laugh. Her first solid food – a raisin stuffed into her mouth by her well-meaning big brother. Then, another thought crossed my mind, that of ‘choking-hazard.’ I could imagine the outcome of the raisin-sharing being a little different. What if she hadn’t managed to swallow the offering? What if she had choked?
I thank the busy guardian angels of my little girl for pushing the raisin down the right tube. I hadn’t realized that the biggest threat to the survival of a baby would be her older siblings. But I should have guessed. After all, there were six kids in my family. I’ve seen what kids do to each other.