Hush, little baby

Uh-oh! Baby Boy is doing something new, and — unlike most of his exciting milestones — this is NOT a good one!

He has become really sensitive about loud (or weird) noises. It came out of nowhere!

I first noticed it on Sunday, we were over at my mom’s celebrating Little Sis’s birthday. She was unwrapping presents, and the wrapping paper was really thick and paper-y, so it made a lot of noise. Baby Boy made this weird little shriek — unlike any sound he’s ever made before.

We thought he was jealous that he wasn’t unwrapping the presents, since he loved doing that at Christmas. So Little Sis pulled him onto her lap and tried to let him help unwrap her gifts. But the second the paper crumpled and made that sound, he shrieked again.

I chalked it up to him being overtired (he was) and cranky (he really was). But then yesterday, I was crumpling up some of those reusable plastic-y grocery bags (like these) so I could stuff them all inside one bag. And he did the same shriek!

He shrieked again an hour later when I was dragging the garbage can a few inches across the kitchen floor — and that wasn’t even a loud noise, just an unusual one.

This morning, I was changing his crib sheet, and he — once again — totally freaked out. I don’t know if it was the fact that I was holding the mattress straight up in the air (and he thought that was scary?) or if it was the sound of the sheets being tugged over the corners, or what.

I picked him up and soothed him, and then kept holding him while I put the sheet on. I explained what I was doing, and scratched the bare mattress with my fingernails to show him the sound it made (and he copied me), and then rubbed the sheet to show him how it was soft and quiet (again, he copied me). And he seemed OK, but still a little wary.

I’m trying not to make a big deal out of this. I just reassure him whenever I make a noise he deems “scary,” and keep on doing it so that he can hopefully get used to it.

But of course, in my mind, I’m fearing words like “sensory disorder.”

Any moms out there who’ve experienced something similar? Is this just a phase, now that he’s older and more aware of things, or could this be Something Bad?

So what do you think?

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