Archives for posts with tag: infant not sleeping

Normal people will sleep between the hours of 10pm and 6am.  I’m not normal.  I’m not allowed to be normal, thanks to all the sleep-sucking parasites I cohabit with.  Anytime I try to close my eyes, each one takes a turn prying them open.  And when I’m awake dealing with the loudest one, the others are resting up for the next attack.

The fun begins at 2:30 am.  (That’s sarcasm.  I’m old.  Real fun for me begins at 4:30 in the evening, when restaurants offer Early Bird dinner specials.)  When I get up this ridiculously early and look out the bedroom window, I see zombies walking the streets and sniffing for lost souls.  My house always beckons their collective nose and I hope one day to invite them in to steal me away.  Because I’m certain that eternal suffering of the undead is more tolerable than sleep deprivation.

It’s time to feed Smush.  Kitchen.  Fridge.  Warmer on.  Pee.  Warmer off.  Feed her the bottle.

15 minutes later, it’s burping time.  Light bouncing.  Nothing.  Soft patting.  Nothing.  Firm patting.  Nothing.  Really firm patting that borders on child abuse.  Nothing.  (And she’s sleeping right through all of it.)  Then I pull out the trump card, my patented baby origami technique.

“Pah!” comes from one end of the Smush.

Was that a burp, a fart, or was I dozing off?  Whatever it was, it’s good enough for me.  I give up.  It’s 3:30.  I change a diaper and return her to the co-sleeper crib.  Ah, back to me bed!

“Ugh!  Uuuuuugh!  Wah!”

Greaaaaat (a la Bill Lumbergh).  Sounds like someone’s got a case of the Mondays stubborn flatulence.  Could it be that I didn’t properly purge the little one earlier?  (Logic seldom prevails in the wee hours of the morning.  I blame Smush’s GI bubbles on my wife’s milk, not my poor technique.)  I repeat the above burp sequence.  Ok, who am I kidding?  I skip to the origami and begin folding Smushie forwards, backwards, sideways and wringing her out like a wet sponge.

Again, it’s “Pah!”

Music to my ears.  She and I both nod off…for about 6 minutes.  Then another “Ugh!” from across the room.  She’s straining again.  So I get up to hang myself in the bathroom squeeze the baby farts out.  And the same tired (pun intended) story loops in 6 minute increments until about 6 am.

Ah, my 6:30am alarm clock is going off.  Wait.  I didn’t set an alarm clock.  The music is coming from Worm’s room.  He’s awake and I’m hearing it through the wall.  I pull another pillow over my head to drown out the sound.  It’s working…until 7am rolls around…

…and Duncan is pawing at the door to be let out.  My pillow apparently doesn’t muffle this sound.  I imagine if it would muffle Duncan’s screaming when I smother him with it?  I jump out of bed to answer the obstinately impatient animal.  (If I wait more than 10 seconds, he most surely will scratch again.)

Open the back door.  I force Frodo to go outside with Duncan.  1 minute later, Duncan’s back inside the house.  Frodo is out there smelling the flowers…every stinking one.  He’s oblivious to me playing the role of doorman for him.  I call him to come inside.  Mind you, Frodo’s old and losing his already selective hearing and his eyesight.  Of course, he doesn’t listen or hear me.  (Yes, they don’t mean the same thing.)  The incredible desire to throw the kitchen knives at him almost becomes reality.  I just don’t have the energy to try.  The furry ba$tard stays outside.  I close the back door and go back to my room.

I crawl under the warm covers only to hear Smushie starting to stir again.  It’s 7:10 and about time for another feeding.  And as soon as I sit down to put the bottle in her mouth, Frodo is barking to come back inside the house.  (The only thing that will make Frodo more obedient is a taxidermist…and yes, I’ve thought about dropping him off a little ‘early’.)

Smush is fed, burped, and changed.  I’m so fed up and hot under the collar that there’s no way my frustration will let me lay back down.  So I go to the kitchen and make my breakfast.  And by 9 am, EVERY ONE OF THOSE DAMN CREATURES IS FAST ASLEEP…except Worm, who is speeding around the house in fifth gear.  It’s his turn to keep me awake for the rest of the day.

This is What I Dream it Would Be Like...If I Could Actually Dream.

This is What I Dream it Would Be Like…If I Could Actually Dream.

If there’s anything in life that tells you that you’re an utter failure at parenting, it should be the time around 3am, when you and your infant are both crying because neither one of you has slept in days.  I, my friends, am doing everything wrong.

“I’ve done this before.  It’s not new to me.” I told myself.  So why doesn’t Smush want to sleep?  She’s been out of the proverbial water (maybe not really proverbial) for 3 weeks now and I can’t figure out why she’s not sleeping at all.  Let me rephrase that.  She sleeps during the day.  But, as soon as the moon rises and the lights are out, it’s a relentless grunt-a-thon.

Between the hours of midnight and 7 am, Smush turns into a sleep monster, eating up the slumber of her once loving parents.  Her viciously effective torture method is to squeak and snort often enough to scoop us out of our delicious dreams.  Once we flip on the bedroom light to discern the matter, she’s quiet as a mouse (and maniacally laughing inside).  Six minutes later, the cycle repeats itself…like every six minutes.

To limit Smush’s damage to just one parent at a time, Steph and I take turns sleeping with the enemy baby.  Meaning, the living room couch has recently become the best place to snooze and be snoozed.  As much as we’d both like to sleep on the couch, one of us has to comically karmically suffer for our life’s misdeeds (like the time when I was 10 and I put a frog on a railroad track during the summer time and watched it sizzle in the hot sun and then get run over by a freight train.  I’m sorry for doing that.  I really mean it this time!).  In the past couple of days, I’ve pulled the short straw.  That means grabbing an extra pillow and hunkering down in the trenches until sunrise.

I’ll be the first to tell you that Smush is not a sweet pea at 3am.  (She’s more like the pea under my mattress.)  During the witching hours, she dons horns and carries a pitchfork (or a spork.  I can’t tell.  My eyesight’s a bit blurry SINCE I HAVEN’T SLEPT IN DAYS!).  In the dark, I feel her cold, calculating stare.  If I fake like I’m sleeping, she knows.  She waits patiently until I really nod off and fills the air with “Ughhhhhh!”.  I bolt upright and curse in her general direction.  This series of events is looped until morning.

On the worst night, I was sans wits.  Wanting to do something to help Steph’s daughter (I’ve disowned her already), I thought that I could try a few things to help her (and I) get some much-needed rest.  They were a string of bad ideas.

Here’s a list of things that I did that are sure to help me win the “Parenting Failure of the Year” award.  I’ve set the bar, ladies and gentlemen.  So, if you’re wondering how NOT to get your newborn to sleep, read on.

  1. Massage the baby – Um, nope.  This is supposed to relax a person!  Since babies are not people, don’t try to do this at night.  You’ll only serve to wear out your hands and invigorate your child.  Trust me, I know.
  2. Stretch and exercise the baby – No again.  I thought that I could tire her out physically by making her do pushups and working her bicycle kicks.  About an hour in, I was both proud of my girl’s stamina and pissed by my girl’s stamina.  Still wide awake…
  3. Practice martial arts techniques while holding baby – With baby fully exercised, I strapped Smush to myself in hopes that my movement would fatigue her and myself.  I know, brilliant right?  Wrong.  I was worked up and so was she.  Wee hours of the morning….
  4. Burp the baby – Well, it works well for about 5 minutes after she eats, but something (a little voice in my head) told me that maybe my girl just needed to be burped again.  30 minutes of burping techniques and I could only manage to burp myself.  I’m 99% sure now that any air that makes its way past the stomach is only going to come out the other end.  Ah, the cock’s are crowing…
  5. Rum – For me, not for her.  A glass or two helped ease my pain, but not my hearing.  Nope.  Besides, who drinks at 7am?  The sun’s up and so is the rest of the house.  Yay…

I was just overstimulating the Smushie.  She would get more stressed and so would I.  The smoke from between her ears should have tipped me off, but I thought it was another devilish trick.

Yes, I’m irritated.  Yes, I’m frustrated.  Yes, I’m tired.  I’m thinking about returning her to the hospital and getting a new one.  This one may be broken.  It squeaks too much.

Don't Tell Me That's Your Eating Utensil, Smushie!!

Don’t Tell Me That’s Your Eating Utensil, Smushie!!

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