Tuesday, July 12, 2005

I believe we have spawned the rebirth of Dr. Jeckyl/ Mr. Hyde.

The Critter, he is kicking our ass. I knew there would be payback for his angelic first few months…

In the last 2 weeks he has: 1) gained roll-over superpowers; 2) gained his initial certificate of mastery of the hands; 3) suddenly discovered his feet and the magical world of toys; 4) increased his lung capacity 5 fold; and most ominously….5) started teething.

During the day these new developments make him so much fun. He’s all smiles and giggles with the occasional grunt of boredom– wanting nothing more than to PLAY! And STAND! And do sit ups. And reach for the toys and roll off the ottoman. He especially loves dancing with Mommy to tunes on the radio. And bouncing in the bouncer. But come crank-thirty (roughly 6:30 in B.C. (before-child) time they all conspire to create a perfect storm of infantile angst and upset that has resulted in my not getting more than 4-5 hours of sleep a night for the last week. And I’m damned lucky to get a 3 hour chunk all at once. And 5 days a week, the day care provider is the lucky recipient of the daytime angel. Not us.

Where before he would sleep uninterrupted from 8 – 2:30 in his pack-n-go basinet and again from 3:00 to 5:30, he now wakes up at 10:30. On the verge of screaming. With no interest whatsoever in eating, via boob or bottle (he’s usually too impatient/cranky to wait out my regular lactational slowdown in the evenings so that’s nothing new). Sometime around 11:30 he can be coaxed back to dreamland, only to re-awaken around 2. At which time we nurse and go back to sleep as usual**. But then, like the sun after a rainstorm out comes this beauteous smile and laugh at the end of the nap/sleep. His bright blue eyes meet my blurry, blood shot ones and all crankiness is forgiven.

We thought maybe it’s time to wean him off the Miracle Blanket. And discovered that if we put him on his back unwrapped he proceeds to coo and babble and play with his feet, and generally get himself revved up to full consciousness (since obviously it must be play time!) So that won't work. At the same time, we've begun transitioning him from his basinet to his crib since he’s almost gotten too long for the basinet. He'll only fit diagonally, and squirms so much he ends up rubbing his head/feet against the vinyl sides, waking both himself up and me. Up until now the nursery has been mostly a storage room - he hasn't spent any time there. But he's settling in. The cute little Oceans Aquarium music and light projector/ baby monitor is helping quite a bit. Cartoonish fishies swimming on the ceiling is like baby crack, I tell 'ya!

I get some relief giving him Tylenol before bed and again when he stirs around 11:00. The other night, he *just* about slept through after the 2nd dose but I tried to sleep-fed him around 3 (after pumping) to make sure. But I use it sparingly. It's all fine to have him strung out on light shows but I draw the line on getting him addicted to pharmaceuticals. We’ve got our 4 month check up with the pediatrician this afternoon, however and (I never thought I’d say this, but) damn I hope she tells us he IS teething, and gives us leave to administer the magic elixir that is children’s Tylenol at will.

Which is why I haven't been posting much. My synapses are not firing like they should and I can barely form a cohesive thought let alone get it out onscreen. Curt and I have begun communicating in Cro Magnonese, with as few words as possible: "laundry. dryer?" "wha?" "you. put.clothes.in.dryer?" "Ah, no." as I must use what remains of the mush slopping around inside my cranium for more practical purposes. Lik work. And paying bills. There just aren't enough sparks left over at the end of the day to fire anything more profound.

** "As Usual” means either the critter and I kick Curt to the hard, lumpy couch, or we retire there to let him have a turn in the bed. We gave up on all 3 of us co-sleeping in the first few weeks. Curt & are are both rather "robust" in our physiques and there’s not enough room for all of us to sleep comfortably. Without a little breathing room Curt worries he'll roll over on the Critter, and I'm such a light sleeper every little kick/squirm wakes me up.

*** I use the term “sleep” loosely. More like him closing his eyes and being quiet until he loses his pacifier, at which time he starts to fuss. Then the little mental mommy monitor drags my consciousness back from the road to the blissful land of Nod kicking and screaming inorder to retrieve & re-insert the binky in his mouth, which by this time has become a mobile target what with the flailing of the head from side to side, back arching and grunting…. You get the picture - general demonic behavior.

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