Wednesday, July 20, 2011

There’s a baby swinging in my bathroom


Errr…yes. That’s my baby in the swing. In the bathroom. What? You’ve never done this before?

Since last week, she has been exhibiting signs of irritability every time we lay her down to sleep, whether in her bassinet or the swing. She would fall asleep in our arms and when we put her down, her eyes would open in 10 minutes, and we’d have to do the song and dance all over again. But it feels like an act of futility when she doesn’t stay asleep once she leaves our arms.

It’s infuriating. It’s perplexing. And it’s absolutely exhausting.

There are three adults in this house who take turn doing the sleepy baby tango with her, but our overachieving almost-eight-week-old manages to tire us all. On the bright side, we may end up with killer biceps, but I’m afraid our arms may fall out before that ever happens.

We’ve tried so many variations and methods to keep her asleep but to no avail. She doesn’t like the baby carrier - we’ve tried three kinds; she doesn’t allow us to sit or rock on the chair while we’re holding her. She only stops fussing when we’re walking around with her as she lays on our chest.

We try the swing. Nope. Swing and music? Not always successful. Running water to soothe her fussy moments? Yes, but only to coax her to sleep but to stay that way? We bring the swing into the bathroom and let the faucet run (sorry Mother Earth - my baby has to sleep!). It gives us sweet relief from a fussy baby and jelly arms for oh...20 minutes or so and it’s back to the sleepy baby tango again.

We’ve googled the issue and ruled out acid reflux because at night, when I lay down next to her, she sleeps at least five hours, wakes to nurse and goes right back to sleep for the next three hours. She does sleep through the night very well for us so we get our rest. Just enough to recharge our batteries so she can wear us out again the next day. What a thoughtful child.

I hope this is just a short phase. When I go back to work, I’m not sure my poor mom can handle the tango on her own. Many people on the Internet advised fellow parents with this same issue that some babies just need to be held and that we should take advantage of this and hold our babies for as much as they need because we will not likely get this chance again. Time is fleeting after all, they said.

I would love to have her in my arms all day and night, but I also have a toddler and a house to run. How will I fit them in when my arms are already full? If I’m worn out and stressed from a cranky toddler starved for affection and a messy house with an empty refrigerator, what kind of mom would I be to my infant?

Anyway, would love to keep chatting about this but Thumper just opened her eyes again. Back to the tango. Meanwhile, misery loves company - tell me, what desperate measures have you taken with your kid(s)?

SleepingThumper A rare sighting in our house