We’re leaving the party. Grace is screaming in the Baby Ktan and Jack is helping me gather up our things . “You have so much patience,” my friend says as she helps me out the door, “I would be freaking out”.
“No, I don’t I just drink a lot of wine and I’m good at suppressing it . And it’s not forever,” I say repeating my mantra that has been my go to these last few weeks when anyone asks about my fussy baby.
The truth is each day I wake up and think today is the day we will turn the corner and not look back. That this fussing and fighting sleep will be behind us . That today will be the day she starts sleeping at night .
And by lunch time when she has woken up after another 20 minute nap I’m frustrated , and I spend an hour trying desperately to get her back down and then I give up. Take her downstairs and start the rotation of the swing, pack n play and play mat. I try a nap again, we nurse and nurse until she just screams from exhaustion . Her eyes puffy and tired.
And I wonder why God thought I was cut out for another round of fussy baby. Why didn’t he cut me break this time ?
So we go out for a walk or to a friend’s house or like tonight a party. Where she cries and I attempt to socialize and I paint the smile on my face, and say again and again, it doesn’t last forever , or well at least we are out . Yes, at least I’m not listening to her screaming alone.
And that’s really what gets me through . The feeling that this time I’m not doing it alone. That I have a village who will hold my fussy baby and welcome us into their home. I have friends who don’t care if my child cries through bbqs and parties and play dates at the park .
And it may seem like I’m holding it together, like I’m patient and put together, like I’m not falling apart at the seems but really it’s just my village holding me together . It’s knowing that I have an escape. That I can throw the kids in the car and head out to the park. Or I can sit at your house and have a safe place to vent. That I can call the children assholes and no one will blink because these days are hard. That you will hold my child when my nerves are shot and offer me wine. And it’s these small things that get me through, that hold me together, that make me patient and calm when I’m anything but. It’s my village that this time around has made having a fussy baby just a little bit easier.