I started giving Gehrig baby cereal when he was four-and-a-half months old, and I really regretted starting that early. For one thing, solids are a pain! Baby cereal is sooooo sticky and drippy, and once it dries, it's impossible to get off (it's like cement--they could build houses with this stuff!). For another thing, it adds more complications to the daily routine. Instead of just nursing the baby, now you have to get his food ready and spend twenty minutes trying to feed him without making too much of a mess (which is impossible, by the way). So this time with Logan, I was not eager to start solids at all. I had thought that you had to start solids at six months, but some of my fellow Junebug mamas on diaperswappers.com informed me that I could put off starting solids as long as Logan and I wanted.
I was really shooting for eight months of exclusive breastfeeding, but when Logan started waking up at night to nurse again, I realized we probably wouldn't make it. So I decided to try as hard as I could to make it to six months at least. I could deal with the nursing at night (although at 3:30 in the morning I would swear I was buying baby cereal the next day), but then Logan started just acting like he was starving after his evening feeding. Since he'd drunk all my milk, there was nothing I could do. I couldn't stand trying to get him to sleep knowing he was still hungry, and as I rocked my poor screaming baby, I realized something. I was putting off giving him solids because I had an idea in my head of how I wanted things to go--I wanted to exclusively breastfeed until at least six months; I didn't want the hassle of starting solids. What did it matter what I wanted when my sweet little baby was hungry?
The next day I bought baby cereal. Gehrig was so excited for Logan to eat "real food" and was convinced that he would be the one to feed him. :) I prepared myself for forcing the cereal on Logan like I'd had to do with Gehrig, but as soon as Logan saw that spoon coming, he knew exactly what to do. He opened his mouth wide and just gobbled it down. It is more of a hassle adding that into my already crazy day, and he does make a HUGE mess, but he is one happy baby after eating his cereal. And that's all that matters.