Thursday, January 19, 2012

It's 8 pm- Official Cranky Time

I will preface this post by saying I really should not complain because Baby AY is a pretty good sleeper. He has gone a decent stretch at night almost since he was born. When all the stars align properly, I am only waking up once a night to feed him and then again at 6 am, which is technically morning already even though I wish it wasn't. So once he is sleeping it is all good.
But there is always a catch. The problem in this case is the hours preceding his going to bed. AY has decided that 8 to 10 pm is his cranky time/witching hour/time to be colicky. When he is in a bad mood it can be 8 to 11. During that time there is a lot of crying and screaming going on and he needs to be held throughout.
Some nights he cluster feeds and falls asleep only to wake up crying as soon as he is put down. Other nights he just screams and cries like he is in pain and no amount of rocking/position changing and walking/wheeling him around the apartment helps until he has decided that he is done. When he has stomach aches, I cannot wear him in a babycarrier because the positioning is uncomfortable for him and he needs to be held in a way that supports his belly. Sometimes he will have a period like that during the day as well, although it's usually shorter.
We have never really had a baby that was a screamer so it is a new experience for us. My husband and I joked around that Y did not cry till he was about 5 days old and even then it was a meek little cry. The other two  definitely cried but were usually easily calmed down, mostly by nursing or holding. This is my first time with a baby that will cry and sometimes not be comforted. Most of the time I can just pick him up and find a position that he likes that will quiet him down. But I have also come to accept that sometimes he is just going to cry no matter what I do. Accepting it does not make it less frustrating though. There is only so much screaming one can take before it starts to get to you. On bad nights, my husband and I tag-team the baby, taking turns holding him. Other nights, AY and I do the whole screaming/nursing/holding/putting down/wake up again screaming-dance alone. I get through it because I know eventually he will fall asleep and stay asleep for several hours.
But my nights are not quite my own these days; they are dictated by AY's moods. I have been getting a lot of reading done, both online and books/magazines because there is not much else you can do with a crying child in arms. I also walk around the apartment picking up toys with my one free arm or attempt to put in loads of laundry one-handedly. Tonight I organized a bin of random flashcards and other cards that are all part of different children's games. Like everything else, it is a phase/stage and I am sure he will outgrow it. Until then, it may be worth investing in a pair of earplugs.

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