First, I must apologize for the excessive time since my last post. Second, this post will have nothing to do with orthodontics.  A lot has happened in my life since the last post.  On August 7th, my wife and I welcomed a new addition to our family. Reese Elizabeth Groth was born at 10:12 PM.  She came into this world with a bang weighing in at a whopping 10 pounds, 1 ounce.

Any moms reading this will know that Kelly deserves some kind of labor and delivery medal of courage after delivering a baby of Reese’s size.  Today I am not going to write about braces, rubber bands, headgear, or anything else tooth related but rather would like to share ten insights that I have had in just a few weeks since becoming a father.

1) When you think a baby has fallen asleep on your shoulder and it is safe to put her down, don’t do it!  Every time that I think that Reese is in a deep enough sleep to be put down she wakes up and looks at me with this playful grin that says “you wish I was sleeping, don’t you?”

2) When you hear that a diaper change is needed, don’t rush into it.  Wave two, or even three, is usually not far behind.  I learned this when I went through 4 diapers in a span of 5 minutes.

3) Babies are expensive.  I’ve known this for some time but one cannot simply grasp this concept until they experience it first hand.  Just like in dentistry, when you label something a “specialty” item it immediately becomes more expensive (as if they incorporate gold or precious gems into the plastics/fabrics that it is made of).  Piggybacking off of #2, as we go through diapers like a college football team goes through food at an all-you-can-eat buffet, I can’t help but see the dollars and cents ringing up.

4) Everyone has tips for solving those pesky issues that come up when you have a newborn.  Ranging from how to avoid her becoming a thumb sucker (and believe me, as an orthodontist, this is a very real concern of mine), to the best way to avoid diaper rash, or how to soothe a crabby baby.

5) Walks and car rides truly are one of the best ways to lull a baby to sleep.  I am amazed at how quickly a grouchy child will quiet down when placed into a moving vehicle.  I say moving vehicle because as soon as that vehicle stops


they may begin to fuss again.  Babies can be very demanding.  A second best thing to a moving vehicle is a baby swing.  For any new parent out there we both highly recommend the MomaRoo.  It looks like something out of SciFi movie but is like the baby whisperer.  Reese likes the “Car Ride” or “Kangaroo” motion set on level 4.

6) When you have a baby no plans can be set in stone.  Even babies with the best schedule can destroy your best-laid plans.  I will admit,


7) Regardless of all of the advice from books, family, friends, other parents, doctors, nurses, and even random strangers, you will do whatever you need to in order to comfort your child (including giving them a pacifier before they are 3 weeks old).however, that Kelly and I took Reese to her first Michigan tailgate last weekend.  We refused to let her disrupt one of our favorite Saturday traditions.  Reese was great the whole afternoon and slept very well that night

t.  It also helped that several of the couples that we tailgate with also have newborns.  It was quite the sight with

our BOB stroller armada walking through Ann Arbor on our way to our tailgate destination.

8) Just because babies don’t have teeth doesn’t mean they can’t “bite.” I don’t know from experience but my wife and most moms can vouch for this.

9) Sleep is special.  I mean this in several different ways.  There are few things better than waking up to a happy baby who has slept for 5 straight hours, having Reese fall asleep on my shoulder/chest, or watching her smile while she sleeps.

10) Being a parent is going to be the greatest/hardest/most fun/most interesting/(insert your adjective here) journey of our lives. We both know that there are going to be bad days, great days, hard days, fun days, ups, downs, lots of lessons learned, and lots of diapers gone through and we excited about all of it!