don’t judge the mother of a drama queen
is your baby a very expressive crier? mine is.
every time I put him in the pram, he hits the roof and screams, I mean SCREAMS! for a few minutes and then he just suddenly stops, relaxes, and starts smiling or day dreaming and is totally chill again. Ditto for getting into the front pack, getting out of the bath, when he is hungry, when he is tired but doesn’t want to sleep, when he’s got gas, when there is sun in his eyes, etc etc etc
basically whenever there is the slightest problem or discomfort, he immediately goes into level ten crying. Often there is no warning, just la de da life is fab, and then BAM! bloody murder.
I know my kid, and I am confident that this just means he is expressive and assertive. He also laughs and smiles just as much as he cries, (except on grumpy days, which we all have) so I know everything is okay. I have also learned some tricks to help him through the bad moods or discomforts.
Obvs I feed him/burp him/get the sun out of his eyes/get him to bed on time/ or do whatever I can to prevent discomfort. Other times when he is just really ‘expressing’ his dislike of a situation (crying his head off) I rock and shush in his ear to calm him, and tell him “I hear you, I know you don’t like it, I’m helping you.”
But there are some situations I can’t change, or I know we have to ride out a little because there is a benefit. Like seeing the dr, drying off with a towel, a nappy change he doesn’t like (he usually likes them, but sometimes NOT), or rides in the pram/ getting into the front pack to go somewhere.
I have learned through experience that if I take him out of the pram when he is doing his initial protest, and try and calm him, and then put him back into the pram again, it starts the cycle of crying all over again. it’s better just to wait it out until he can just ‘say’ what he needs to and express himself. And I promise you, he loves the pram after he gets into the groove, he looks up at the leaves on the trees, watches the people, listens to the birds, and then gets rocked to sleep. it is very zen. So it’s worth it. and baby, sometimes mama has GOT to leave the house.
BUT I know that when people see me walking down the street with my 3 month old in the pram screaming, they think “why doesn’t she help that poor baby? why is she just leaving him to cry?” But I know I am not, he’ll be okay. He just needs to talk about it. and I am listening. trust me, I AM LISTENING. (everyone on the block in listening).
So be understanding of the mother whose child is crying. Don’t think she is exercising some evil from of CIO. It might be a personality thing. She might be really in tune with him and just appear to be unresponsive. Mothers with chilled out laid back kids might not understand that a screaming baby might actually be okay.
And my power stance regarding Ari is that there are no such thing as bad or good babies. As in, “Your baby is so *good*, she’s been quiet and asleep the whole time.” Babies cry, some more than others, and mine just happens to be the ‘more than others’ kind. Plus I think it is a sign of intelligence that he is switched on to what is happening around him and expresses his opinion about it.
But you better believe I need to remind myself of this every damn time we go out in the pram.
a mother’s love
I have a fb friend, someone I used to know why back when, who lost her 5 month old baby a year ago today. Today she posted pictures in his memory… soft dough checks, dark brown eyes, olive skin, wispy brown hair, I can’t help but think of Ari.
And the scariest thing is, he was a very healthy kid. Nothing was wrong with him, all he had was a flu-y cold. But then his fever started to climb, and since she has 3 other kids at home, she was waiting for her husband to get home before going to the hospital. I would have done the same thing probably.
How was she to know the fever would spike so drastically? That he would start seizing? that his brain would be so oxygen deprived that it would die, and then a few short days later he too would die?
The hospital where she lives has a special service. A professional photographer will take portraits of your dead or dying child, free of charge. They have all of these heart breaking photos of him, body still alive because of tubes and machines, in his mothers arms. She is weeping but still looking directly into the camera with an all knowing look. Like she knows the deepest depths of pain and knows she can bare it. Because she has to. She has 3 other children at home.
I kiss my own son’s soft dough cheeks today and I pray for her.
I am so glad I live in the digital age so I can take hundreds of photos of my kid without worrying about it. Remember film cameras when you had 24 pictures and each one was a gamble?
These were taken on week 11 &12.
this sweet face.
After a very long week, I just have to look at your soft smile and know it’s worth it. even though I am oh so very tired. tired to bone. to the marrow of the bone.
My new favourite things to do with you:
Kiss the soft dough of your arms
tickle your belly
change the lyrics of every song to include your name
talk in stoopid voices that you find hilarious
watch your legs kick and splash in the water at bath time
lie next to you for rollie-pollie time on the floor
take you out on walks in your pram and watch your little eyes as you gaze up in wonder at the trees.
it’s good to be your mama, my 3 month old bud-bud.