Thursday, January 15, 2009

Wits, meet End.

I always love my baby, but some days, such as today, I don't like him very much. He's mad if I sit, mad if I stand in one place. He's barfing. He's fussy. He's only interested in any one thing for three to five minutes, and then he's mad again. He screams for no good reason. He's trying my every last nerve. It's days like this (and yesterday) that make me think back wistfully to the days when it was just Pete and I. Granted, those thoughts are only a quick flash before I remember all the good things, but being tired and frustrated will make you think all sorts of stuff that you don't really mean.

It could be easy to feel guilty about being mad at a being who does not yet have the cognitive ability to regulate his emotions or process his surroundings, so instead, I try to remember that he is, indeed a being who does not yet have the cognitive ability to regulate his emotions or process his surroundings. And when I am feeling like I may lose my mind, what helps me is reading. I have called it Self Defense Reading before, and I guess I can continue to call it that, but it's also simply Reassurance Reading. I spend some time doing research on infant development, I read about what is "normal," I find examples from other parents and remember that I am not alone, I remember that this will not last forever, and I realize that when the time comes that he no longer depends on me so much, I will wind up missing this baby phase. Tonight, it helped me to relax, which, in turn, seemed to help Finn to relax, as he fell asleep on my shoulder and stayed asleep for awhile.

Finn is fine. He's quite good, in fact. He's probably going through a four-month old type of growth & development spurt, which can make babies, well, a bit intolerable. Because of his external third trimester, I can't necessarily assign developmental stages to him either on his adjusted or chronological age, but just observe his behavior and look for similarities in the literature. I am not parenting by a book, by any means, but sometimes I just need to remind myself that he's ok, and so am I.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Mr. Pat Ronizing says: Yes, this is good. This is real! I can understand the comments on this blog. You are at wits end with this child and your feelings are justified. Do not ever feel guilty! Feel "get even!" Yeah, that's the ticket. Think about the time when you can put the little rascal on a plane to western MA for three or four weeks to grandparents who will let him roll way too fast down the hill on a set of hot wheels, teach him how to use a chain saw, and let him eat ju-ju fruits and twinkies all the while watching "Princess Bride," on video for the umnpteenth time. You and your sweetie can bask in contemplative meditation and solitude, no little screecher, whiner, fusser, barfer around to frazzle your nerves. Ha, that'll teach him. By the way, we're gonna be playin' army guys too, and goin' out beyond the breakwater in George's boat, no matter what condition it's in at the time. I hope the dog can remember to stop at the end of the street when he's pullin' Finn around on the sled.
I can't remember my password to have the Mr. Pat thing be at the top of the page, so, um...