Yesterday on facebook I posted a link to a little blog post that waxed nostalgic for the “last baby.” “Every one of his firsts is also your last – your last first smile, your last first step, your last first word.” etc. etc. It’s that little bit of sentimental torture to which I am particularly susceptible these days. A bittersweet tear or two slipped down my cheek as I read that article that hurt so good, and then gazed into my darling baby’s face.
Then . . . last night happened. Oh. My. God.
Most new babies tend to fuss during the dinner hour – they become bewitched at 6pm-ish, and fuss or cry for an hour or two, for several of the early weeks. It basically assures that one parent never gets a hot meal, but I never recall it being a big deal with my other boys. But Craig – the Craigster – the Craigerator – he takes it to new levels. Two nights ago he fussed from 6pm til 10pm or so – not so much out-and-out crying, but more wiggling and whining and just fussy. We managed to chill him out for a bit by putting him in the shower, which he LOVES (vs. baths, which are Of the Devil and cause much lamentation).
The husband left for a short trip yesterday, leaving me solo mama with all three kids for the first time. And last night, Craig flat out screamed from 8pm to midnight. While I appreciate him bumping the time by a couple of hours so I could get the kids to bed before having to deal with him, by the fourth hour of this I was seriously beginning to believe it would never end. “Every one of his firsts is also your last. Your last first smile, your last first MISERABLE EPIC FOUR HOUR SCREAMFEST.” Happy to see that first go sailing by, thank you, and hoping that he doesn’t repeat it tonight. At one point I just put him in the bouncy chair and went out on the porch and took a breath, before diving back in to pat and wiggle and rock and sing and try to soothe. He finally fell asleep at midnight, and I put him in the swing and then tried to smooth my frazzled nerves by watching a tv show on my phone. I fell asleep a half hour later, only to be woken at 1 for a feeding. He ate and went right to sleep, woke again at 4 for another quick feeding, and then I had to be up at 6 to get the boys ready for the day.
The older boys, I am grateful to report, were quite helpful. Bath, book, and bed went smoothly, and this morning they got ready and we were out the door by 6:45. I tried to nap today, but for whatever reason, I couldn’t do it. So it’s been a long day of HGTV and blinking at the wall, holding the baby and waiting til I have to go get the other kids. He’s napping on my lap right now, while I awkwardly lean over and type on the ancient, heavy, barely working laptop that I have at my disposal.
Sigh. It’s the highs and lows of parenting, right? You can’t have the highs without the lows. Exhaustion comes with the territory. At least, after our lightning strike the other day (did I mention lightning struck our house and threw our electronics for a loop?), the husband got one of our tvs and satellite working before he left. I’ve lost my Netflix, but I have my Househunters International and Property Brothers.
Can you imagine – if I had the typical 6 week leave only, I’d be going back to work in a week? Thank God at least I have another 7 weeks to get this kid sleeping and to start feeling a bit more normal again.