Monday, November 10, 2008

I Can't Help But Notice a Theme

It will not take you long... figure out what Lilly has been up to for the last nearly-five years.

At the pool...

...chillin' at the house... her brother's birthday party... her own birthday party...

...just because...

...with pigtails... a suitcase...

...and last week, as Dorothy.

What can I say other than: "My child sucks her thumb WITHOUT CEASING OR INTERRUPTION and shows no signs of stopping before college."

And honestly, I'm not worried.

For starters, I was a thumb-sucker well into the elementary school years and had no idea I was doing it. I remember my attentive kindergarten teacher reminding me to out take my thumb, which was tough since it was such an unconscious reflex.

What makes me crazy is all of the other people insistent on helping Lilly break the habit.

They are well-intentioned and believe (however misguided) that they can spare her the shame and ridicule of continuing on.


Not happening.

I have every reason to believe that Miss Oral Fixation will not stop until she is good and ready.

I have promised the child a trip to Disney World--yes, THE MAGIC KINGDOM--if she will stop.


Not happening.

My first clue was when I reflected on her potty-training experience.

There was no reading of potty books, sticker charts, candy rewards, or bribes.

One day when she was barely two, Lilly announced she was ready to go potty and the child put on big girl panties and never had an accident.

(For those of you inclined to hate me right this second, rest assured that it would take another blog entitled "My Life at the Threshold of Hell" to adequately capture the potty-training nightmare we endured with Jackson.)

All that to say, when she wants to stop sucking her thumb, she will.

Based on nearly a decade of combined orthodontic experience between Brad and I, The Girl was destined for braces even had she been born thumb-less.

The one picture I didn't include was her ultrasound at 20 weeks, showing that infant body with her thumb securely between her lips.

It is filed somewhere in the basement in a box labled "Miscellaneous--Volume 127" so maybe I'll go dig that out this week...

A baby in the belly can only do so many things--eat (sort of), poop (somehow), sleep (with eyes closed?), and suck her thumb. We aren't really asked to break any other habits begun before we were born, so altering this behavior seems especially difficult.

Last week, my sweet sister-in-law sent me this photo:

Lilly's newest cousin, at 18 weeks.

I believe the family tradition has successfully been continued.

Emotion swells my throat and wets my eyes as I see those tiny eyes, arms, and ribs growing so beautifully. 

And that precious thumb.



Jessica said...

oh yeah! will is a thumb sucker, its adorable! in utero, too! wahoo! as a former school social worker, i don't recall ever having to consult about a kid's thumb sucking issues until at least the 3rd grade! it will all work out! :)

natalie said...

there is absolutely nothing wrong with sucking your thumb. NOTHING WRONG WITH IT!! i did it until i was 12 and i am perfectly fine. i didnt quit until i was ready, not even when my parents covered my thumb in tabasco sauce, or when i wore a special mit to help me quit, or when my grandpa tried to suck MY thumb because i told him it tasted like cherries. at least she doesnt suck the ketchup off a french fry over and over again. love ya!:)

Jules from "The Roost" said...

I LOVE IT! You have a great attitude...who cares and what sweet, sweet pictures....It makes me want to suck my thumb! LOL

Tricia said...

Trust your instincts, Momma Bear. No need to pressure that darling girl, and thereby stress yourself and her into a frenzy.

I am taking a similar approach to Tucker's potty training... I'm really fine with the slow going, but it's other people's comments that start to make me feel like we should really push for routines and dry pants. (And I would covet the story of your experience with Jackson... it sounds perhaps similar to mine.)

He's getting it... and so will she. Nobody goes to college in diapers, or with their thumb securely in their mouth. Nobody.

Kelly said...

i'm with ya! it bothers me when lucy tries to suck her thumb while talking, but john is the one trying to break her of it completely. like your kids, ours are destined for braces no matter what, but john's little sister sucked her thumb until she was 14 (!) and i think he remembers how much other kids made fun of her. he wants to spare lucy the same. but she's just FOUR!!! (don't tell him i'm on your side!) :)

Beachy Mimi said...

Good for you! She will stop when she is ready.

Amy said...

Awwww!!!! I love it! And I'm with you, Lilly can quit WHENEVER SHE WANTS! Who cares? Seriously. How fun is that to see Baby Galanos the newest thumb sucker.

Suzy said...

I forwarded this post to all my friends with thumb suckers and they all loved it!

Sit A Spell said...

My now 13 yr old is very strong willed and does things in "her time", on her schedule...not mama's. Learning to swing, tie her shoe, ride her bike, learn to swim and stop sucking her thumb was ALL when she decided it was time.