I'm going to start this post with a reminder - The Artist Formerly Known As Miss E will now be known as Ez, and The Artist Formally Known As Mr A, will go by the name Fonz. Still nicknames (obviously, I hope), but somehow they feel more like real people with these names, and they feel much more natural when I'm writing or vlogging about them.
As I mentioned in my Vlogging Diary this week, we've been having some problems with Fonz and Ez's feeding for the last week or so. I know it's normal for babies to go off their food when teething, but we just couldn't seem to get back on track when Fonz's tooth finally came through. And Ez was being equally challenging at mealtimes, even though she wasn't teething. I began to suspect that it was pureed food that was the problem. They just didn't seem that interested anymore.
We started traditional weaning at six months, having been advised to wait until then, and also to go for traditional weaning, I think because they were born early, and had always been on the small side. Having been given this advice from a healthcare professional that I really trusted, I was happy to do this and so we began pureeing food in massive quantities to meet Fonz and Ez's rapidly increasing appetites!
As soon as they showed interest, we also gave them finger foods, and both Fonz and Ez have chowed down on a large variety of different foods, from roast chicken to French toast. The amount of finger foods they have wanted has been growing recently and I realised that they are more interested in feeding themselves than taking purees off a spoon. So we made the decision. No more purees.
Today, with great trepidation, I served up cheesy chicken pasta bake instead of puree. I needn't have worried because both babies shovelled it down at a rate of knots. I was amazed, both by their enthusiasm, and by the amount of food they ate, and I got such a buzz to see them happily feed themselves.
Weaning's been a really hard slog. It's never been straightforward and I have often found mealtimes incredibly stressful as I'm faced with one or both babies screaming because they're not happy with what's on offer. I blogged back in January about my anxiety about feeding when I was still breastfeeding, and it's never really gone away. The emergency feeding regime the babies were put on after losing too much of their birthweight in the first couple of days really took its toll emotionally and their size and weight has been a sensitive issue for me since then. And still is, if I'm honest.
Maybe we should have chosen baby led weaning over traditional weaning. Maybe we should have moved on from purees months ago. Maybe mealtimes would have been less stressful if we had. But we didn't, and there's no point worrying about it now.
Today was a good day. I feel excited and relieved that Ez and Fonz are ready to move on. It's a sign they're developing, and I'm all for encouraging their independence. I have no doubt that we'll have good days, and we'll have bad days. But through them all I've got to remember that I'm doing my best, and my babies are healthy and happy. Because that's what's really important.