Particularly from changing him, i started to discover him. His behaviour was a mystery – i couldn’t tell whether he was hungry, wet, hot, cold. But whatever he was, he was mine – and i slowly came to feel that he was a new thing in my life, a new person.
It was very hot – up to 28 degC – and we were worried about him overheating. But this was just the biggest worry of many. He was alternately crying, so we wondered if he was ill, or quiet, so we wondered if he was ill. Every behaviour seemed to point to a fear of ours.
Rooting for food was the only unambiguous signal. Jerking his head around, pushing his wide-open mouth onto my chest – deluded little chap – was my sign to call Claire to open the restaurant. I have never seen anything that so clearly connected us with our mammal heritage – he was like a mewling mole rat reaching for mum’s nipple.
While discovering him, though, i had to talk to him. Grandparents visiting, phone calls and so on all asked the same question: What’s he like? While i could describe the behaviour, it was odd knowing that i was describing a baby – he wasn’t yet growing into being Leo. Or if he was, i couldn’t understand how he spoke to me. I began calling him my little mystery
Sue and Jeff sent us a book with a great quote – that babies all speak a language that foolish adults have forgotten. It does feel like that.