Thursday, January 3, 2008

little nipper

bug is developing a bad, bad habit. she likes to clamp her teeth down hard. with something in between. like my nipple. sometimes it's just my clothes. one time it was her sister's chest.

she bit me once or twice before she had any teeth (and it still hurt!), but after the chompers came in, she didn't bother. until the last 2 weeks or so.

she's clipped me dozens of times, often in pairs. after i scold her for the first offense, she'll slyly stare me down as she gently extends her neck and oh so slowly clamps her nascent pearlies down on my uber-sensitive part. if she does it twice in a row, i close the buffet.

i don't know what's causing this new fascination with biting. pooka never had issues with it. i'm sure she did it once or twice, but it was never a problem. bug constantly bites things. she even bit her own finger hard enough to cause herself to cry; however, that experience has not deterred her snapping.

pooka, although she loves her baby sister dearly, has become very wary of holding her too closely. one night while playing on the bed, bug leaned in and took a bite of pooka's chest. it quickly left a welt, a subcutaneous pooling of blood, and pooka in tears. i removed bug to her crib, whereupon she began wailing, too.

i don't know what to make of this behavior. i don't want her becoming a problem child at daycare. (pooka actually has a history of being a chew toy for other children. when she was at daycare at the age of 2, she was regularly a victim of a certain child who apparently had a nasty combination of oral fixation and anger management issues. she has even sustained occasional nips from the supposedly matured kids at the pre-school house.) i try to sternly reprimand bug for the biting--any voice raised in anger will cause her to cry--but it doesn't seem to impress upon her that she's doing wrong.

for the most part, our best path is to avoid putting anything within reach of her mouth other than food, but therein lies my predicament. my offering her food puts me in jeopardy. it's getting to the point where i'm somewhat less than relaxed every time i nurse her (not the night feedings, she's too tired for mischief then) which makes for a not very nice bonding time.

this is one of the many reasons i'm thinking about weaning.