Tiny babies fuss, (murfle, make expressive faces and wiggles,) and cry to communicate, but the communication gets more difficult as their needs grow. Here’s what seems to be the ticket for us so far (and the order that we check things in… hungry? wet? need burping?)
On Day 1, all DC2 needed was milk from a breast and ze was happy. Ze would fall asleep with a smile, tiny arms wrapped around a ginormous breast.
Day 3, DC2 discovered that wet diapers are uncomfortable. If a breast didn’t satisfy, check the diaper.
A few days after that, DC2 discovered gas. Gas problems could be solved eventually by walking, patting, and eventual burps or poops.
Sometime in the second week, DC2 got a bit more existential and came up with two new needs. The need to direct hir own locomotion, something ze is mostly physically unable to do, which causes a lot of frustration and forces us to be very careful that ze doesn’t just fling hirself from our arms to the floor, and the need not to be bored. We think these are related. Initially lights and ceiling fans kept hir from being bored (the trip from the hospital to the car was *amazing* to hir for that reason), but they seem to have lost their initial luster. It is darned hard to entertain a bright-eyed often awake newborn who is no longer satisfied with the same sights and cannot yet hold onto a toy. So we do a lot of walking around. Thank goodness for big sibling, and thank goodness DC2 seems a bit less traumatized by tummy time than DC1 was. I guess we’ll be going out a lot once I’m fully functional and the two week don’t take the newborn anywhere moritorium has been lifted. (Also we have a mobile in the mail as DC1′s mobile broke into component parts sometime in the past 5 years.)
I could turn this into an analogy about life-style inflation, but I don’t think it fits. I think a better analogy is one of ambition. Needing more than a serving of warm milk can be frustrating because warm milk is easier to obtain than a lot of things. But having more needs, especially existential needs, can also be a driver for growth. Ambition can help us do things we never knew existed when we were satisfied with a full tummy.
But still, we’re not looking forward to when DC2 discovers that tummies can be upset by things other than the need to burp or poo.
What evidence do you see of growth and growing needs in your life? Are you satisfied with being satisfied?