Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Tell Me a Story

You know what would make me feel better? Hearing your stories about those first few weeks of parenthood. Don't bother to sugar coat it; horror stories will help me feel like I'm not alone (though, maybe include a word or two about when things started to get better).

Use the comments - I always read them - and feel free to remain anonymous if you want. And many thanks.

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7 comments:

Blogger Momma Pants ~ 1:27 PM

Once upon a time, there was a baby named Norah. She was a sad girl because she had trouble sleeping. Whenever she got tired, she cried. To get her to sleep, her parents had to either walk in circles or bounce on a yoga ball or both with white noise playing for 30-45 minutes to get her to sleep and maintain the motion and sound for the entire duration of her naps. This happened 4-6 times a day. At night, once she had been asleep for one hour, they could stop the motion, but had to sleep with her in their arms in the reclining couch.

When Norah was not tired, she was a very happy baby, but those times were few and far between.

There were many mornings when both parents had gotten too little sleep and Dad was getting ready for work that Mom would consider the day ahead and how insurmountable it seemed. She would bounce Norah into her first nap and cry. It made Norah's Dad feel very badly that he had to go to work and leave her all alone, but it was what had to be done.

Slowly but surely, Norah learned how to sleep better-- first at night and then during the day-- and by 5 months, her parents could hardly remember how terrible things had been in the beginning.

Her parents were also rewarded for their sacrifices in trying so hard to get her to sleep-- because she was so well rested and without a significant sleep debt, Norah was the happiest baby in the world with smiles, laughs, and hugs in endless numbers for her Mom and Dad.  


Anonymous Anonymous ~ 1:51 PM

There are a couple of experiences that I can relate….somewhere in my child’s third month of ‘out of the womb’ life, I had a bit of an epiphany. I was totally stressed all the time thinking…I should be doing something else (when she was crying) I need to keep everything perfect in my house (when things got messy)….the epiphany came one day and it went like this…..Babies survive being left on doorsteps and dumpsters – babies have survived crack head mothers – babies have survived the worst parenting and messy homes……I think I am doing better than that! I felt better immediately.


One other experience was when my child wouldn’t stop crying (she was about two months maybe) I was still breast feeding and I ate something that translated to the milk and made her very gassy and uncomfortable…I couldn’t figure out what was wrong however and after a whole day of crying - and me trying to burp her over my shoulder and sitting on my knee…..I was ready to quit! Anyhow, here comes my husband after work and he says (because he’s had other kids before) OH well all you have to do is this….he takes her, lays her on her back on the floor of the living room and slowly, gently pushes both of her legs towards her chest…letting her knees bend ….and out pops the most lovely loud farts!!!! I told him that was information he could have shared previously.



It does get easier….the more practice at anything always makes things easier BUT kids are like the weather…just when you think you got em figured out…they change. J By the fourth, you’re a pro!  


Anonymous Anonymous ~ 1:53 PM

Understandably, having to look after a baby is HUGE!!! The Mom’s hormones are all over the place (thus the emotional stress) Having had 3 girls myself (one was a screamer 24-7), I have to admit the first six months to a year is the toughest, I had no experience with the first baby, was fortunate to have my Mom and sister rescue me when I was having meltdowns. If there is family (friends) offering to help out…….accept it for your own self preservation or to catch up on sleep, laundry, shopping. It is easier when a child starts to develop communication skills, before that the only communication they know is crying so you don’t know what the hell is wrong………..so it’s the process of elimination to try and figure out what is the matter that is time consuming (usually end up roaming around aimlessly at 3:00 in the morning with an upset baby). Took the babies for car rides even to soothe them. As cute and adorable as babies are……….they are high maintenance…………..but the good news is it gets better and you learn to be parent as you go along. If you have any Dr. Spock books, throw them out, he didn’t even have children.

Take care, New Mom…………..it’ll be okay……………if you can get support from whoever you need to!!!  


Anonymous Chris ~ 3:13 PM

When N was around a month old, she stopped pooping regularly. She would eat, and eat and eat and eat and not poop. By the third day of not pooping, she would start to get fussy. By the fourth day, she was inconsolable. Mercifully, by the fifth or sixth day she would squirm and scream and unleash a quantity of poop that would sufficiently fertilize a moderately sized garden. It would easily escape the confines of the feeble diaper, and spread itself over every surface within the vicinity. The good news is that after swabbing the decks, we would have a happy baby again, until about day five as the process repeated.

One of N's poop vacations ended while Brenda was out at her yoga class. I was left to tackle the mountain of watery dung alone, and was caught off guard. You see, I usually fulfilled the role of first mate, providing wipes, paper towels, gas-masks, and a fresh diaper to the captain. These were uncharted waters for me.

I peeled back the poop-soaked diaper, and immediately jammed it back on her bum, reeling from the shock of the smell. I reluctantly pulled back the diaper again, and stared at the thick layer of mustard-like paste that coated her poop deck.

I removed the diaper and held up N's legs, suspending her above the poop. I stared at the wipes, sitting just to the left of N's change table, firmly enclosed in the plastic case that keeps them from drying out. The plastic case just within reach. The plastic case that takes two hands to open.

N was now flailing a bit in response to the bum-freedom she was experiencing, and in danger of squirming back into the poopy mess. Ignoring the wipes, with my free hand I cradled the back of her neck, and carried her poop soaked body to the sink. I used my elbow to turn on the tap, and let the water pressure do the cleaning that I couldn't. The poop washed down the drain, and she was clean again.

We used the baby-bidet a few times after that, when N's poop was especially explosive. While I haven’t started marketing the baby-bidet for mass consumption, I do recommend it as a quick cleanup method for especially nasty, sticky poops!  


Anonymous N ~ 10:49 PM

My baby ate for 1 hour every 1.5 hours from the day he was born - 24 hours a day. Since he was breastfed that left a maximum of 1.5 hours in between feedings to sleep. By the 7th week of never sleeping more than 1 hour at a time, my eyes swelled up so big and red that I couldn't see. I definetely couldn't think. Because I was so weak I wasn't healing and by that point I still couldn't walk or sit normally. My husband when he was home would set the baby on the feeding pillow on my lap and whip out my boob so the baby could attack it - and I do mean ATTACK. I concentrated on existing only - if I could just get through this day maybe the next would be better. I planned nothing and accepted that the baby is truly in charge. While he stopped needing to eat that regularly, his desire to sleep for only 1.5 hours at a time continued until he was about 8 months old when I decided enough was bloody enough. Since he was no longer eating at night, just wanting to play, we would hold his hand through the crib bars to let him know we were there but would not pick him up. He would scream for 3-4 hours straight every night. It took 18 days of screaming and several neighbor complaints and then one glorious glorious night, he didn't bother waking up until dawn. He is still stubborn as hell, but he does sleep through the night most nights now. My first child slept through the night from the day I brought her home and I thought I was Supermom. Now I know, it has NOTHING to do with you. Its all the baby's fault. Stay the course, adjust when necessary for everyone's sake and hold it over him his entire life. My boy's so grounded once he's old enough that it will work in my favour. :)  


Anonymous angdesj ~ 10:43 AM

-planned for natural birth
-labored 3 days
-had pitocin, 2 epidurals (didn't work)
-c-section necessay, never got past 4cm depending whose hands was up my crotch
-had spinal tap
-went to cut me on operating table
-told them I could feel it
-put my under
-never got to see my baby being born
-woke up a few hours later not knowing where I was
-Husband told me I had bled out, lost over half my blood, almost died
-in 3 days not allowed to eat or drink and few hours in recovery told to stand
-nurse didn't lock wheels on bed
-I stood up, passed out, bed wheeled away, landed on my tailbone, blood everywhere from impact coming from c-section oicision
-couldn't sit or lay on back because of injured tailbone, couldn't lay on stomach becasue of incision
-hospital staff treated me like shit and administration accused me of lying about my fall
-went home, difficult to breastfeed because of sitting issue, tried like a son-of-a-bitch
-blood clots came out of my breast, no one ever seen that before, had to get mammogram, breast ducts blocked with scar tissue? left breast not working
-pumped for 6 six weeks every 3 hours
-developed all over skin rash that itched like crazy during this time, had to take antihystamine
-suffered from such bad water retention couldn't do up buttons on babies clothes
-got mastitis, had to be hospitilized, threw in the towel, gave baby formula
-six years later still have tailbone injury, mostly hurts when I sit.
-sued hospital, who were found at fault but due to perjury from my nurse and my athletic endeavours they didn't believe my fall was as a bad as it was and that my injury was exagerrated.
-I owe thousands of dollars in court costs.
-good times......had two healthy, very large babies via c-section and I would all of that nightmare again if it guaranteed me the same health of my child. Both kids slept through the night a six weeks, potty trained before 2nd birthday, above average intelligence and very active sassy little girls.....almost think they gave me the wrong children at th hospital:)  


Anonymous Anonymous ~ 1:57 PM

My wife wanted a natural birth via hypno-birthing, ended up with a c-section. Had breastfeeding issues for weeks, suffered from thrush and mastitis. Half of her face went paralyzed from Bell's Palsy, and remained so for six weeks... though doctors couldn't guarantee that her face would ever un-freeze.

When we got home after 6 days in the hospital, our dogs (who had been staying with my parents) developed some kind of stomach issues that made them shit liquid uncontrollably over our white carpet or wherever they stood for a period of I think five days. They're Yorkies, so they occasionally crawled under our beds to do so. Thank God my parents owned a carpet steam cleaner.

The kid is awesome, but we paid a price for him.  


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