Jackson is starting to get into a pattern with his day. Which is really good because with the holidays and all the running around I never knew what to expect with him. He has slept 6 hours through the night for the past 4 nights which is great. Early this week he had 2 nights of excessive evening fussiness. Tonight it is 630 and miraculously he is sleeping. I hope this means he will still sleep through the night. He needs to eat again at 8 ish and one more time after that. He has been really fussy at night. For the first few weeks he just ate, slept and pooped. Now he is awake and alert more often and needs to be entertained when he is alert and happy. But at night he is just awake and fussy. He is gassy. He eats incessantly. He screams. Nothing pleases him. He wants his pacifier, he doesn’t want his pacifier. The books call this colic. I’m not sure I like that word. I hate any word or label that people want to put on him. He’s too young for labels. The past 2 nights he hasn’t been as bad, just alert and fussy, not the screaming of the previous nights. We are finding ways to work through it. Like feeding him constantly, flipping him on his side, putting him up on our shoulder and walking him around. I hope I’m not over ambitious when I say this. I am hesitant about declaring anything permanent when it comes to him for fear that I am wrong or will jinx any progress we have made. I don’t like to say he sleeps through the night for fear that he won’t sleep that night. And so on.
Being a parent is not hard work. That is to say that the work is not difficult, but it is hard in the sense that it is never ending. There is no lunch break, no anxiously awaiting 5:00 it’s a 24/7 job. As soon as I’ve changed him he pees on his new outfit, then he spits up, then he blows out his diaper, then he spits up on his bouncy seat. This was the flow of yesterday. Today he had a wonderful playful period in the afternoon and I’m starting to be able to tell when he needs a nap. As a mom you have to become astute at reading the small signs your child gives off. The childcare books will tell you that you will learn to read the babies cries. Like the Eh-Eh-Eh that means I’m hungry and about to wake up. Compared to the Eh-Eh-Eh that means I’ve had enough of this foolishness I need a nap. Compared to the Eh-Eh-Eh waaaa that means I’m overly tired and damn fussy where is that silly thing you shove in my mouth for me to suck on! This is bullshit. You will learn to read the signals they give before they cry like the eye rubbing or hand sucking, then you will be able to tell what each Eh sound means because during the first few weeks every sound they make is Eh. And eventually you will be able to get them what they need before they even make a peep. When this happens it’s a huge triumph and you should totally reward yourself.
I’ve learned that the reason you register for everything under the sun is because when your child is screaming you will try anything to make it stop. You will put them in the bouncy seat, offer them the pacifier, put them in a swing, swaddle them, rock them, whatever it takes to make it stop. When a baby won’t stop crying you will want every option in front of you. It sucks to have a crying baby and have someone tell you that her son loved his bouncy seat and always stopped crying while in it and you don’t have a bouncy seat. You will immediately become obsessed with obtaining one. After a night of crying your only goal the next day will be getting a bouncy seat. So get everything you can beforehand because you don’t want to end up needing it at 11:00 at night after hours of screaming.
Around 8 weeks Jackson had a terrible screaming fit that lasted all day straight through till 130am. I had no clue how to make him stop. Nothing was working not the bouncy, not the swing, not the pacifier, not running the vacuum or putting him in the stroller. It all was a huge fail that only made him wail harder and longer. Then a friend suggested The Happiest Baby on the Block. It was way past the time when I could run out and buy this (and when you have an infant there is no “running out to buy this”) so I started googling it and reading reviews on Amazon.com. The book seemed to have a secret cure for crying. I needed this book immediately. The next day my mother in law babysat for a few hours. I immediately purchased the book and then went to Starbucks and read as much as I could. When I got home I felt like I was equipped with the knowledge to calm Jackson down. I spent every spare moment reading that book and then inevitably Jackson was cranky. I tried the author, Dr. Karp’s, method and it worked. It miraculously worked and continued to work. It was the best money I had ever spent. If I was Oprah the Happiest Baby on the Block would be my favorite thing and everyone would be getting a copy.