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Posts Tagged ‘crying’

While C was sick, he was extremely unhappy.  So much so, that C upgraded his normal fussy tantrum to the ULTIMATE tantrum.

It was crazy, over-the-top toddler behavior.  It was so bizarre that I had to completely focus my face so as not to laugh.

Let me paint a picture for you:

C would get worked up because, well, he felt terrible.  But he was so sick and tired and frustrated that his fussiness just kept escalating into tantrums that got worse and worse.

He would begin by whining.  Then he would move on to crying.  Then C would graduate to wailing, complete with big open mouthed howls and giant crocodile tears running down his cheeks.  He would toss his head back and forth, shaking it furiously as if to deny some fact I was forcing him to accept.  NO! NO! He seemed to be saying.  I won’t accept evolution! I am a creationist! You are making me so upset by forcing this “science” on me!  (Or at least that’s how I re-imagined his reaction to make sense of it since his denials and tantrums made not logical sense, much like creationism.)

I (or some other loved one) would attempt to soothe him.  I would pick C up, rub his back, gently hushing him as I rocked him to and fro. It was a true example of mothering patience and comfort.

For this I was rewarded with kicks to the stomach and thighs, accompanied by piercing shrieks in my ears, as C violently threw himself around, trying to break free from the prison of my arms; though minutes before he had begged to be held, rushing at me with open, upraised, pleading arms.

In response to his violence, I would put C back on the ground, to which C’s immediate response was to amp up the screaming.  C would stamp his feet, usually making himself turn in a small circle.  So mad!!  He would then turn and run the opposite direction from me, finding some boxes or pile of blankets to hide behind, throwing himself on the ground, crying and crying and crying.  He would sit there and furiously kick his little legs up and down on the carpet, screaming in frustration (It was extremely difficult not to laugh at this since it was just so ridiculous!).  Finally, C would look up, see me, and get up and run away from me again, repeating the whole thing all over again.

When C had sufficiently bruised his heels from kicking at the ground or was simply tired of being alone in his box forts, he would seek me out, arms upraised, face wet and red from crying.

If I was lucky, C would simply rub his snotty, tear-stained face into my shirt, snuggle into my shoulder, sigh and eventually sleep.  If I was not so lucky, well, then….let’s just not think about that again.

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In re-starting this blog I wanted to give people an honest look at motherhood, the good and the bad, the successes and the failures.  With that in mind, I write today’s post.

I had a meltdown.  After a long week of putting on the brave face and saying, we’ll get through this, this will pass, etc., I finally had a breakdown.

Baby C has been challenging this week, to say the least.  I’ve had an average of 3-4 hours of sleep per night.  And I’ve had virtually no support.  My husband has been completely absent, either at work or so tired at home he was asleep or zoned out.  My cousin did help me on thursday for a few hours, but C was so challenging that I spent a lot of my time with the two of them.  I spent the rest of my time rushing from one chore to the next: piles of laundry, putting toys away, writing/mailing thank you cards, etc.  So by friday I was completely exhausted.

I had hoped my husband would take the day off, since his company stole his vacation last week, but no luck.  Instead, he went to work cranky.

On the home-front, C had a terrible day.  He was incredibly tired from not sleeping well all week either.  He didn’t want to eat cause his gums hurt.  He didn’t want to nap.  He didn’t want to play.  He just wanted to cry.  So all day I tried not to pull my hair out as my baby cried.  Sure we had short bursts of play time, when he was occupied and amused for a few minutes, but they didn’t last long.

I tried all my usual tricks.  Nothing worked.

By 6pm I was done.  Done!  My husband wouldn’t come home from work and I’m stuck in LA far from my family.  So I called my parents’ house crying, begging for someone to please come up and help me.  I spent the next half an hour watching C alternating between playing and crying, while I silently cried, trying not to go into hysterics.

My mom and husband showed up at the same time.  I silently handed over the baby, made his dinner, and locked myself in my bathroom.  I took a very long lavender-scented bath.  Even then, through the walls I could hear C crying. My nerves stayed on edge until at last I got dressed, made C a bottle and he finally fell asleep.  It still took me an hour to de-stress enough to sleep.

I’d like to tell you that it’s all ok today.  I’d like to say that everything’s fine.  It’s not and that’s the plain truth.  I’m not looking for sympathy.  I just want to be honest and let you know, motherhood isn’t always easy.  It’s rough and it’s ok if mommies have meltdowns.  The babies get to, why shouldn’t we?

I’m going to try and indulge myself in a few things today: chocolate, shopping, a nap, maybe even a pedicure.  Maybe this will make it better, maybe I just need a break.

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This is a game that Baby C and I frequently play.  It’s fun.

The game instructions go something like this:

Baby is crying.

Step one: pick baby up.  If crying stops, hold baby for just a bit longer and then resume normal activity.  If not, continue on to step two.

Step two: check the clock.  Is it time to eat?  When was the last time baby ate?  How much did he eat?  Could he be hungry?  If he’s not hungry and/or crying increases proceed to step three.  Otherwise, for pity’s sake, just give the kid a cookie.

Step three: check baby for obvious wounds.  Is he bleeding?  Does something appear to be crushed?  Nearby broken toys/glass/wood may be a clue.  Does he appear to be sweating profusely?  Is he hot to the touch?  If yes to any of those, seek medical attention.  If not, proceed to step four.

Step four: check baby for subtle signs of pain.  Is he pulling on his ear/mouth/hair? This could be a sign of teething, ear infection, or a cold, or if you’re really lucky, all three. Dose baby with baby pain medicine/gum number/ cold medicine.  If none of these symptoms appear proceed to step five.

Step five: check the diaper.  Clean diaper.  They are always dirty, so just change it.

Step six: attempt to put baby down for a nap, as he is probably tired.  If he isn’t then you are.  Either way, someone could use some sleep so do yourself a favor and put on a cartoon, prop the baby up next to you on couch/bed and try to nap.

If nothing is working, try one of the following:

drive around until baby quiets/sleeps/shuts the heck up

call spouse/mother/sister/neighbor and beg them to take over the baby for “just a little bit”

try to get dogs/tv/musical instrument/washing machine to amuse baby.

put baby in crib and let them cry, at least for a little bit so that you can go cry in the bathroom

start drinking wine or eating chocolate.  Here’s my current choice of chocolate:

Samoa Girl Scout Cookie or "Crack for Moms"

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