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Light On, Light Off

Ronana at the Wedding
The blushing bride with Ronan.

Ronan and the family took our first road trip to a family wedding in Vermont. The five-hour drive turned into an eight-hour drive with lunch stops, bathroom stops, and breastfeeding stops. Luckily we arrived before the really big snowstorm hit and we spent the rest of the weekend indoors, looking out the window at the snow blowing in the wind.

Ronan was very well behaved the whole weekend, but didn’t understand why he had to stay in the car seat the whole time on the road. After all, Mom and Dad and Uncle Ryan were free to move about the cabin. Terry, as usual, was impeccably prepared with new toys that distracted him for quite a while, and he slept on the trip as well, when he was too exhausted to take in all the new sights and sounds from the back seat of a 4-wheel-drive.

But as we approached the mountain inn where we were staying, he grew restless. Terry solved this problem with the overhead light, which she turned on and off. This proved to be so entertaining; she had to spend at least an hour turning in on and off. While this kept Ronan quiet, it didn’t entertain Terry nearly as much for some reason. Every time she tried to stop, Ronan kept pointing at the ceiling light and grunting until she turned it on and off again. She kept threatening to stop; but every time she gave in to him again. He was thoroughly entertained by this.

The inn was just as much fun as the trip up. Ronan has this way of sitting back and looking around for a while before crawling around and exploring a new environment. He would take in the rehearsal dinner or the reception or breakfast and look around for a while before wanting to head off, crawling around on his own. This would be fine except he’s only about a foot off the ground when he’s crawling and most places were filled with relatives either getting sloshed or on their way to getting sloshed, and I wasn’t sure that they would notice a baby under foot. (They’ll probably all take umbrage to that characterization.)

So the only time he got to crawl around during the weekend, outside of the time spent in the hotel room, was when the reception was in full swing and the bar area was mostly emptied of people. I had to pick up some toothpicks to prevent impalements; it was only later that I realized that he had crawled through an indeterminate number of spilled drinks, soaking his pants with alcohol, but he loved the wide-open spaces not found in our Brooklyn abode and didn’t care.

Overall he was a big hit at the wedding. Most babies I’ve encountered reach a point where they can’t stand one more person picking them up; Ronan seems to thrive on it. At least a hundred times someone picked him up and carried him off for some quality time, and as long as Mom or Dad were within line of sight, he seemed not to care. The one thing he did care about was the cheering when the happy couple was introduced at the reception. The whistles and the clapping and the noise undid our fair trooper, causing his one true meltdown of the weekend. His crying could barely be heard over the thunderous applause. Apparently, besides humming and singing, Ronan does not like loud crowds. Once the wedding party was seated and the noise quieted down, he was back to his old self.

We continued building his phobia of dogs with exposure to a sheepdog, which terrified him, and a small little pug, which at first terrified him but then he became more curious about her. The sheepdog caused Ronan to back up as fast as he could, which we were not aware he could do until he did it. Now he loves to crawl backwards as much as forwards. Hopefully through slow exposure to large dogs he will lose his phobia of being eaten or something. This will hopefully also improve, as he grows big enough so that large dogs don’t seem like Godzilla to him.

After a too-large breakfast Sunday morning to help us with our post-reception blues, we all piled back in the 4-wheeler for the drive back to New York City. Ronan was not happy about being consigned to the car seat again, and the toys held little interest for him. So Terry resorted to the ceiling light yet again, until she realized that she would have to do this for the next eight hours. Thankfully Ronan became interested in the passing, ever-changing view out the window, so she was able to try to get some sleep, even though she didn’t really sleep much. Ronan stared out the window until he too fell asleep.

The logistics of rental cars in New York City being what they are, we dropped Terry and Ronan off in Brooklyn before returning the rental car to Manhattan. I arrived home about two hours after we had left them. Ronan was happily eating dinner in the high chair, with Terry feeding him. Finding your family safe and sound and happy to see you after a long road trip is quite a nice feeling.


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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on March 15, 2008 4:32 PM.

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