8.23.2009

I'm Done For

My little Jane? Cries all the time. I think more in the first two weeks of her life than all my boys put together. I cannot figure it out, and with every minute more of lost sleep I lose a little more sanity and a little more confidence in my infant-caring ability.

She breastfeeds better than any of my other babies ever did - truly! (This is a GREAT blessing - I'm not denying that, for sure. I actually say, "Thank you, thank you" every time she latches, I was so worried before about nursing...) She doesn't seem abnormally gassy, although she isn't a regular pooper, so maybe she's having a hard time moving everything through.

But most of all, she does not console. Rocking, sitting, standing, with or without "white noise." I can't do anything. She will finally crash, so tired, but she does not sleep for very long stretches at all. I mean, often not more than 20 minutes, never more than three hours (and that's only happened two or three times). And it was only today that she had any waking time that she wasn't fussing and/or screaming. She goes from zero to hysterical in one second flat, too - no wind up, nothing that seems to set her off.

I'm thinking this is another "Learn Empathy" lesson for Code Yellow Mom. I never REALLY understood moms who talked about their extremely fussy babies until now. I mean, my other babies have had phases and moments and illnesses that caused fussiness, but this is inexplicable and incurable. And I'm going mad. I hear her crying even when she's not. I've just started not bothering going to sleep because being awoken just as I doze is excruciating.

And I'm freaked out because on Wednesday, David is going back to Ukraine with the big boys to start school and I will be here with Charlie and Jane. I'm considering pulling all my hair out ahead of time, as a preemptive strike...

Except I can still appreciate things like this (pictures below), so I know it'll be OK. There is maybe nothing more precious than a newborn who still folds herself up like she's in the womb. Look at those little legs! Can you help loving such a thing?


P.S. Thank you to my friend Debbie who made the flannel blanket Jane is curled up on. We love it - perfect weight, perfect colors, perfectly soft. (Charlie likes the frogs on the opposite side!) It's getting a lot of use!

19 comments:

Mrs Lemon said...

I'm so sorry - wow - it will pass. It has to. DEAR GOD - it has to pass!

she is perfect though!

Brianne said...

Congratulations on your baby girl!! I totally understand what you are going through with her only sleeping a few minutes or hours at a time. My third was that way too. A few thing I tried... I know this is looked down on but I put a pillow in the bassinet to raise his head and he started sleeping better at nights. I also swaddled my kids when they slept and when they would get really upset and it seemed to help sleeping a little more and calmed them down. Parker(my third) didn't start sleeping more than 20-30 minutes for naps till about 6-7 months so I don't really have any help for you there. I am a big fan of Mylican even if she doesn't seem gassy it seemed to help when Parker was fussy and something else I tried was Grip Water... it helps with collicy kids and also covers teething and can help regulate their systems. It is all natural so you don't feel like you are medicating your child all the time. I will keep you in my prayers and hope you can find something that will help even a little.

Andrea said...

That is the cutest picture with the feet all tucked up. Cute!
So sorry about the crying. I love that each baby is their own individual and we have to figure out what works. Wishing you some sleep really soon!
Cute blanket!

Real said...

I know exactly what you mean. Seriously. My first baby was like that. Cried all.the.time. She slept in fifteen minute intervals and those only happened a few times a day. The rest of the time, if she was awake--she was crying. In fact she cried so much that we actually remember the first time she was awake without crying. We were stunned! She was four months old. It was rough. And she wasn't an easy baby even after that. Although she was an angelic toddler and little girl. So there ya go.

Also, I don't know if you'll ever get to this point, but if you do just know you're not alone...Sometimes I just had to leave her crying in her crib and close the door and walk out--feed myself, go to the bathroom, brush my teeth and take a moment to collect myself and pick up the pieces of my sanity off the floor and superglue them back together.

MommyJ said...

I absolutely wish you weren't so far away... if you weren't I would send you some colic water. My dad is a pharmacist and compounds it himself. I've never known a baby that it didn't work on. The only down side is that it will absolutely make your baby smell like pickles. For real. But it works...

If you get really desperate, I'll spring for international shipping. :)

Linda said...

So I'm standing at the sink, doing the dishes, and thinking about you and your little predicament. And then it occurs to me... I have several friends who have gone through the same thing. Some of them discovered that their babies were just colicky, but one - who had angel babies before this one who did nothing but cry, discovered that her sweet little angel was lactose intolerant.

She cut all dairy from her diet (hard when you're addicted to cheese as she was), and was able to calm her little one. Said baby eventually grew out of the lactose intollerance, but until she was finished nursing, she couldn't do any dairy. Baby didn't have gas or poop all that often, and just cried... incessantly. It's a thought... and hopefully you'll find out what the problem is before you pull your hair out. I rather like your hair.

Good luck! She is truly a precious little one... and I love the roast chicken pose too.

Let me know how things go - Linda

Theresa said...

I don't have any great ideas to give you, but I will be praying. The pictures were adorable. Our littlest granddaughter, Eva, still sleeps like this and she is almost 7 months old. I just love watching sleeping babies.

Aimee said...

You poor, poor thing. There is nothing tougher than missing out on a good night's sleep after a long and challenging day. You could probably handle the daytime crying more if you at least got a solid 8 hours of peaceful sleeping at night. All I can offer you is my prayers. Or a suggestion to check into hiring a night nurse to rock the baby for you? Hang in there. Your family and friends will be praying for you.

megachick said...

i love when babies are so soundly asleep that their mouths gape open like fish. good luck with her fussiness. brigitte had a few months where she was inconsolable, but i can't tell you how we got through it. the beauty of motherhood: forgetting the bad stuff!

Bunsy said...

Been there. I don't know why this thought helps me so much but just the idea of taking it one day at a time helps me endure things a lot better. If I can get through one day, or just one hour, I feel like I have some control. Even if it is just a tiny bit. Be strong. And those days and weeks when my husband was gone came and went and you know what? I'm still alive. And you will be too! You're in my prayers.

Anne said...

Oh Traci! I ache for you. Do you have one of those baby wedges so she can try sleeping on an incline? I second the suggestion about stuff you might be eating too, who knows? Some babies are super sensitive - mine spit up more if I eat chocolate ... I hope that there are many more shiny golden moments you can preserve for the rough times. Those tiny feet grow way too fast. PS - She is gorgeous! And I love that her onesie matches the blanket.

NOBODY said...

Avee was colicky and it was hell. Just saying. I don't remember her being that way so early though, but I pretty much don't remember the first 6 months of her life, so I can't be sure.

Gripe water (or some of Mommy J's Dad's stuff) is a must. I didn't read everything already written, but I'd say swaddling. And perhaps you could have a friend who lives in say...Iowa or something, find you a wrap if you need it. She may just be the kind who needs that and if you can have your hands free AND have her wrapped, it might not be so bad. The good news? Avee is my best sleeper and did actually sleep through the night sooner than the rest (6 weeks! I ain't lying.) But her waking hours were torture for me.

Those little squished up legs are to die for.

NOBODY said...

oooooooooooh girl, you got some GOOD advice! I completely agree with just walking away sometimes. It will keep you from losing your mind COMPLETELY. If she's going to cry either way, go get yourself some peace.

And the lactose intolerance idea....worth a shot.

Gabriela said...

I'm so sorry, I have nothing to add really. Only my first cried inconsolably so I was pleasantly surprised with the next three. The one thing I've learned, and you already know, is that nothing last forever with babies, even though sometimes in the moment it really, really feels like it.

You can do it!

And those pictures are adorable. don't you just want to eat her up?

(and btw, the swine flu thing is KILLING me. I want to really blog about it, but some of my friends here read my blog and it wouldn't go over so well if you know what I mean. But, really, craziness prevails.)

Jill said...

I agree with several of your commeneters... Since you are in the UK can you go to a natural doctor? I can't think of the name right now darn it. I bet it's either colic which is a beast or the food you are taking in. Drink WINE :)

Lei said...

Those bum shots make me smile too. :) I am sorry she's making oyu earn your badge of honor thoguh. Truly you have to be exhausted (in mroe wyas than one). Call in the troops! Friends, etc.! Get a nap if possible and have someone else hold the crying baby for a bit. I bet it will do you a world of good. (((hugs))) Hang in there!

madsonblueeyes said...

Ohh so sweet, I loved that blanket when I was sewing it so glad it is getting good use.

I hope things go better soon, I know it isn't an easy time! She sure looks adorable.

The Amazing Trips said...

Oh dear, CYM. I am so sorry to hear that Baby Jane is having a tough time acclimating to life, outside of the womb. She is absolutely adorable, and I would love nothing more than to spend some time looking after her so you could take a NAP.

I'm sure that you are being bombarded with advice. But I really believe that babies that age do not cry for no reason at all. So, apologies in advance, but here comes my unsolicited suggestion(s):

1) Prop her mattress at a slight incline (you can do this by rolling a receiving blanket and placing it under one end of the crib. Also, have her checked for reflux.

2) See about having her checked for lactose intolerance. I know you are nursing, but I found that my William was terribly lactose intolerant and if I ate dairy, it would derail him, completely. They do this via a stool sample. William ended up weaning pretty early and I began feeding him Isomil by Similac (soy based) - and he was a NEW baby.

3) People around the world may GASP at this, but I believe that babies sleep so much better and more comfortably on their tummies. I think that if they do have any digestive distress, it can really help them if they are on their bellies. Although, it looks like you are already doing this...

4) Keep her on you. When the triplets were babies, all three of them had reflux and William was lactose intolerant. Whenever I could, I had one of them strapped to me in a carrier (baby bjorn type). That closeness to me, always soothed them down. Also, with Henry, he was almost always latched to my boob, which made him extremely content.

You know how fast this time passes. It seems you blink and it's over. But, for now, I hope that you are able to target what the issue is - get it resolved - and both of you will get some much needed rest.

I'm sending you prayers and many wishes for peaceful days ahead!!!

Blog O' Beth said...

You've already gotten such great advice that I'm sure I'm repeating at this point, but here it goes. My daughter was an angel, but my son - well I could do nothing to help him sleep. He ended up being Lactose intolerant and we switched his formula to a soy-based (I know you are breast-feeding so this may be different for you). Also, He had GERD so we bought a foam wedge and propped him up while he slept and this helped A LOT. However, even to this day (he is now 3) he is hard to console. He doesn't like being held, rocked or nurtured in normal ways. I've learned to step back and let him lead - he shows me or tells me what he needs when he needs it.

I fully sympathize with your agony - it is very hard to feel so helpless. You two are learning each other and you will find that groove, it is just going to take longer than it did with your boys.