Today I can officially add a new skill to my CV: ‘Fully literate in the art of baby language’……. No I don’t mean I can speak ‘goo goo gah gah’ (Lord knows I wish I could communicate with my baby!) No, what I mean is I understand and speak baby terminology on a daily basis.
I didn’t think this was a ‘thing’ until the other day I saw a friend who doesn’t have children and she had to keep asking me to translate what I was saying when talking about Amelia. Then she drew my attention to a BuzzFeed article and I got her gist. I realised I’m so used to talking to parents, I forgot we spoke a new special language which is complete gibberish to other onlookers who don’t have kids.
If in doubt, have a go at the quiz now and tell me what you get? I have to say I was very surprised at myself. Gold star for me and clearly shows I talk too much baby! Bet you new parents are the same.
So for all you people out there who aren’t literate in the language of babies, here’s a quick run down of some of the things us new parents talk about, all day, every day!:
- Silent Reflux – a form of reflux where the baby isn’t sick, but acid still creeps up their throat causing them a great deal of discomfort. Adults can also have this and it is miserable. Poor Amelia suffers terribly.
- Vernix -this is the waxy or cheese-like white substance found coating the skin of newborn human babies. Yes it is as gross as it sounds, sorry. But it is good for them and midwifes recommend for you to keep it on the skin as long as possible as it protects their delicate skin.
- Tongue tie – when a baby’s tongue is attached to the base of its mouth making it very uncomfortable for both mother and baby when breast feeding. Can also cause a speech impediment. Easily treated with a small snip, but quite hard to diagnose and by the sounds of it, not something all doctors and midwives agree on.
- Breach position – when you are pregnant and the baby isn’t positioned in the best possible way for birth, i.e. it is positioned bottom down instead of head first.
- Back to back – this is when the backof baby’s head is against the mother’s back. Having the chin up is what makes the posterior baby’s head seem larger than the same baby when it’s in the anterior position (in a nutshell, it tends to hurt more when being born!) Again I have first-hand experience of this one.
- Posset – not to be confused with a delicious desert of the same name, possetting is when babiesbring back up small amounts of milk. Possetting is said to be normal and nothing to worry about. This is why new parents always have a rag or muslin with them at all times. Basically the new fashion statement for mums.
- Isofix – the attachments you need in your car to attach and anchor the car seat.
- Poonami – the most enormous poop explosion that goes all the way up the baby’s back and requires a change of clothes immediately. Every mothers worst nightmare on a long car journey or extended pram walk.
- Meconium – baby’s first poo (made up of everything baby invested in the womb). This poo is unlike no other and is black and sticky like marmite. It is almost impossible to get off. Handy tip: Don’t put your baby in its best clothes as soon as it’s born, else you may be throwing them away before you have even left the hospital.
- Latching – getting your baby to breastfeed correctly with a specific focus on their mouth position around the nipple. Ideally the baby’s bottom lip will be near or on the base of the mother’s areola with its nose opposite the nipple.
- Cradle cap – is the greasy, yellow scaly patches that sometimes appear on the scalps of young babies. It is common, harmless and doesn’t usually itch the baby but can worry parents.
- Colic – a horribly common aliment that no one really knows how to treat. It is defined as episodes of crying for more than three hours a day, for more than three days a week, for three weeks in an otherwise healthy child. Often crying occurs in the evening and is accompanied with lots of leg thrashing by the baby. Also accompanied by a very tired and weary parent!
- Tummy time – putting your baby on its front to strengthen its neck. Babies spend a lot of time on their backs, so parents are encouraged to do this position with the baby daily to prevent ‘flathead’ (another term in the baby dictionary which does what it says on the tin and means that the baby has a visibly flat head)
- Nose aspirator – Ok don’t freak out, but this is an implement to suck out your baby’s snot from their nose. As they can’t blow their nose this little gadget comes in handy.
- Like a good abbreviation or acronym? Well come right in.. as parenthood is full of them. Check out some of the following:
LO (little one) TMI (too much information) BF (breast fed) EBF (exclusively breastfed) BFN (big fat negative pregnancy test) BFP (big fat positive pregnancy test) AF (aunt flo/ period) BLW (baby led weaning) DD (dear daughter)… the list is endless.
So if you’re expecting a baby, get swatting up as you will be using all of the above terms, abbreviations and many more very soon.
And now I’ll take a few moments to congratulate myself on passing out of the school of baby language with an A*…. Well I would if I had the time, DD (dear daughter) is crying so must dash….!
Did you do the quiz? If not, have a play here: https://www.buzzfeed.com/mikespohr/only-an-actual-parent-can-name-1113-of-these-things?utm_term=.rxZEZGZ35V#.ncjvaqaV0k