I'm a planner. And by that I mean I really, really like to have a plan for everything. So it should come as no surprise that I had a well-thought-out, wonderfully elaborate plan for my sweet baby's first meal. I would wait for just the right time, when she could fit better in her little high chair, could pick things up with her thumb and forefinger, and maybe have a couple teeth in. Most of my books say these are the indicators of a baby's readiness for solid food (you may have gathered at this point that I'm also a reader). I would buy her a handcrafted wooden bowl and spoon for her first taste. I would source a local farm for a fresh organic sweet potato. I would purée that potato and mix it with my breastmilk. Then, when everything was prepared just so, I'd have her daddy help her take that first bite, my camera at the ready to capture this most precious first moment. That was The Plan. A good plan, yes?
Then today came. My family was here for our Christmas Eve dinner which ended up happening this day after Christmas because we were completely snowed in until now. (I guess the weather had different plans). I had the baby on my lap, enjoying our meal and family. So intently she watched me eating, grabbing at my plate and fork as she tends to do these days. I paused for a moment, watching her, really paying attention with my full self. And that's when it happened. I didn't even think much about it, really. I simply scooped up a bit of mashed potato from my plate onto my finger, and just as I was going to offer it to the baby, she leaned her head forward, mouth wide open, aiming straight for that little dollop. No spoon, no specially prepared food. Just my finger and some mashed potatoes. Definitely not in the plan. The weather changed, the circumstances changed. Change, change, change, all messing up my plans. My plans! This is the lesson my baby has been teaching me ever since her birth (which, just for the record, veered completely away from the plan) - the lesson of letting go, changing plans, and embracing the moments as they come. I'm learning, sweet one. Please keep teaching me.