A little over a week ago, Noah started sitting up really well (ok, almost really well) on his own so I decided to dive into baby led weaning headfirst and see how he did with it.
If you remember this post from a while back, I read the Baby Led Weaning book and I'm glad I did, I got a lot of great info from it. While it did seem a bit repetitive, I still took away some awesome stuff. Most of all, it really put my mind at ease when it comes to gagging and choking. According to the book, babies have a gag reflex much farther forward on their tongue than adults so it's going to happen. They're going to gag, whether you like it or not, but when they do, they also spit out whatever they're gagging on. (Hopefully anyway!)
I am no expert by any means and can only tell you how my personal experience has gone over the last week but I'm so excited to continue letting Noah feed himself. I'm lazy, so BLW is ideal. ;)
One day after work last week, I cut up and roasted a sweet potato and some squash and once it cooled, I just put it on his tray. I got so excited when he immediately picked up a piece and nommed on it! He made a hilarious face and shuttered a bit but in the span of about 20 minutes, he picked up, tasted and dropped food about 4 or 5 different times.
No, I'm not following the book to a tee. I'm sure I'm probably cutting his food into chunks that are too large. Or maybe theyr'e too small. Or maybe he's not even supposed to be eating some of the things I'm giving him but ya know what? We're having fun, he's not choked, and dammit, the kid loves his green beans.
Jessica T on Vimeo.
It was and still is hard for me not to pressure him into eating. The urge to place the food in his hands is so strong but I just have to be patient. It's called "baby led" for a reason. He'll figure it out on his own... right? RIGHT?!
I keep trying to tell myself the first few weeks are all about exploration. Noah hasn't had anything but breastmilk his entire life so of course he's gonna make a funny face to veggies. I would too! Fingers crossed, after a while, he'll get used to food and realize that this stuff will fill his belly. Then, maybe, just MAYBE we will be weaning off of breastmilk all together in the next 6+ months. The milk jugs would love that. Mommy is tired of pumping.
Anywho, to sum things up, we've tried a number of different foods and so far green beans and asparagus are Noah's "favorites" - as in, he'll pick them up and chomp on them repeatedly. Funnily enough, the kid won't touch banana for some reason. I thought all babies loved bananas? Nope. Not mine.
WARNING: BLW is not for the faint of heart.
Be prepared for a huge mess!!
Among green beans, asparagus and bananas, Noah has tried avocado, bread, butternut squash, sweet potatoes, regular potatoes, broccoli, scrambled eggs and watermelon. Now, don't throw me to the wolves on those last two. I know that allergies are often a worry but neither my husband or I have food allergies (none in either family actually) so I figured I'd give them a shot. As far as peanut butter and strawberries are concerned, I might wait to give those a try. :)
All in all, I'm glad we decided to try this method before starting purees. Not to say we'll NEVER do purees, I'm sure I'll send some to daycare at some point, but if finger foods work out, why not?!
Have you done BLW? What are some foods Noah should try?!