If you rock the baby to sleep, have her sleep on your chest, feed her until she’s snoring; that’s fine. Go ahead; but just know you are signing up for this task for at least a year.
Babies like what they like. Who wouldn’t want to snuggle in someone’s cozy arms or be lulled to sleep whilst rocking back and forth to your dads humming?
I remember when I watched my first baby, around 28 years ago. A friend was going to her mother in-laws funeral. She left me with these instructions.
- Sally will wake up at X time.
- Enter her room wearing my scarf, hanging on the outside doorknob.
- Do not turn on the lights.
- Be sure the bathroom door is open about 5 inches and the shower light is on. (That is enough light for you to see)
- Sit in the rocking chair to feed her but don’t move the position it is in.
- Be sure to turn on the mobile before you sit down.
- When she is done hold her upright for 17 minutes.
- Change her while singing somewhere over the rainbow.
- Stand on your head and spit jellybeans.
Ok, so the last direction was just me being sarcastic.
Of course I tried to follow all of these steps. And of course she cried the whole time because I probably opened the refrigerator or forgot to turn off the television.
I felt like what a new mom must feel like. I totally turned off my common sense. I didn’t do what seems natural because I had to follow the directions.
My friend came home to a screaming Infant.
This regime came about because it worked one time. The chair, the light, the noise and the smells suddenly settled her fussy daughter.
I totally get it.
parents WILL DO ANYTHING TO MAKE IT STOP.
When my son was born my husband and I walked around OUR HOUSE with one shoe on. We had to scoot our foot under his bottom in the light-blue bucket chair and bounce it up and down. It became a mindless ritual; Tap-Tap-Tap, rocking him until he fell asleep.
It became the routine; it was our new normal because he stopped crying. It worked!
We did go through a few of those chairs, but it didn’t matter. That chair went everywhere with us. It became more important than my make-up
(whose kidding who here, make -up went out the door when I left work to go on maternity leave)
Eventually there is a break in the insanity. Common sense seeps in a little bit and the routines get much more manageable.
What’s your crazy story? We all have one.