My daughter will be 7 months old next and we've started playing around a bit with solids. My concern is that she has gagged a few times - and my only experience with feeding a baby was my ex-26 week preemie, who had extreme swallowing/feeding issues. So, I really don't know why is normal.
Here's what we've done so far:
First: Offered some very soft baked chunks of sweet potato for her to play with/taste. Some small bits got into her mouth from sucking her fingers and she promptly gagged and threw up all of the breastmilk she'd previously taken.
Second: Gunshy from try #1, we went the purée route and offered some stage 2 organic jarred sweet potatoes. Predictably, she wouldn't let me hold the spoon, so she held it and tasted a few bits here and there from the spoon and her fingers. Gagged herself on the spoon.
Third: Offered her half of an apple to play with/mouth/etc. That went fine. I don't think she got any bits in her mouth (she has 2 teeth, so I thought she might scrape some off), but she seemed to enjoy the flavor by licking.
Fourth: Mashed up some avocado and gave her a bit on a spoon (that I held onto also so she didn't stick it to far back). She got a little bit in her mouth and had a big ol' gagging episode.
We've also given her some teething biscuits to play with a few times and she seems to enjoy those.
Does this all sound normal? Should I just shelve solids for a few weeks and see if the gagging is better later on? Or carry on, expecting there to be some gagging? (My son's issues were complex and serious and he gagged and vomited multiple times a day for 2 years, so I have a touch of PTSD about gagging/vomiting.)