Friday, October 9, 2009

Give the Kid (and me) Some Chunky Monkey!

My older son and my husband are built from the same mold--tall and wiry.  When people see them together, they nod knowingly and comment about how alike they are.  Then...there's Riley. When he came out of me--and I am not making this up--the nurses weighed him TWICE to make sure they'd read the number correctly.  They looked from him, to me, and back again, probably wondering whether I'd been dallying with the (stocky) mailman while my husband was at work.  (He wasn't that large, but let's just say he didn't exactly match me...or my husband...or his skinny brother.)

As you can see above, he continued to develop...into Sumo Baby.  He was always near the top of the height and weight charts, as he eventually toddled around on those tree-trunk legs, leading with the formidable belly.  There was never any concern (except when he learned to sit on his brother to get his way), since his growth remained steady . When he passed preschool age with the little rounded belly still in evidence, I thought that might just be Riley's natural body shape forever.

But suddenly, he stretched. Sometime over this past summer, he sprouted just a little taller, his face thinned out, and his little-boy belly...disappeared. The last tiny shreds of his babyhood had melted away before my eyes. And that was bittersweet...but fortunately there was a last laugh:  We went for his 6-year checkup with the pediatrician who has treated him since he was born.  After reviewing his chart she informed me, with the air of one imparting serious medical advice: "since his weight has dropped off a little this year, Riley should have an extra snack every day." There was a long pause as I sat there with my mouth open, before I was able to sputter intelligently, "REALLY?"  So now I have one underweight son who eats tons, but you can still count his ribs (we believe the food may be dropping out of a hole in his foot), and one above-average-sized son who gets additional food on doctor's orders.

Forget 401Ks, forget College Fund, I'm going to need a special account just for trips to Giant!
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