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Friday, August 19, 2005

development and regression, all rolled into one

ugh. i am no longer mr nice guy. i am mr lazy blog updating nonsleeping and no longer funny except for my insane hallucinations and talking to myself guy. you know how you have a lot of stuff to talk about but you don't say it at first but then all of a sudden there is more to talk about and then you feel overwhelmed by how much is on your mind and you don't know where to begin so you don't begin at all and then it's too late you have waaay too much to say so you might as well shut up forever because you're never going to get caught up and what's the point anyway since we're all going to die someday. you know? so it's been one of those weeks.

this is all incredibly not interesting but the basic thing is that the baby, she is possessed. it's really too bad. we had decided we liked this baby. it was a baby that we wanted to keep around. she was cute. she had begun drooling a lot and making eye contact and smiling all the time and grabbing things with her hands. cute, right? you would hand her a little tiny baby toy and she would grab it! her eyes would get all wide with wonderment at the fact that she had fingers! and an opposable thumb! and she would reach for the tiny little rattle or stuffed rainbow-colored turtle or rawhide chewy bone or whathaveyou and she would GRAB IT. she had an id, or an ego or whatever. mostly she had WILL POWER. she would exercise that will: inexorably--ineluctably even!--the thing in her hand would make its way to her mouth! she would chomp on it with her gummy pink fleshy slimy babymouth. this was a very new development, like within a week or so. the thing would sometimes not make it to her mouth, motor control not yet totally mastered, so sometimes the thing would go into her eye. or smush up against her cheek, missing her open drooly cavernous toothless maw. sometimes she would just hold the thing and babble and laugh. it was so fucking cute your head would explode and your spouse would be left to clean your brains off the wall AND raise the baby alone, but she would do it happily because the child is obviously a prodigy supermodel olympic athlete.

but THEN. then, (if i may paraphrase revelation 12:9) the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him ... and all of them ENTERED THIS PERFECT CHILD'S BODY. look, mrs nice guy and i are not dumb. we were not, unlike some members of this household, born yesterday or thereabouts. we have books and we can read and we know that the baby is supposed to sleep 15 out of every 24 hours. this lilliputian dark angel, however, now sleeps a good seven or eight hours a night. not bad right? (of course, it's mildly annoying that these nine hours begin at 6 or 7 pm and end at ... carry the one ... cosine ... times pi ... 2 or 3 am. but then she dozes for another two or three hours.) so apparently she thinks we must be convinced that she sleeps enough because she has dropped naptime like oprah drops pounds on sweeps week. no naps! we put her down for a nap at 10 am and she will fake us out: she will sleep for 20 or 40 minutes. then she will wake up emitting a sternum-splintering howl that is clearly designed to summon her minions from hades to come destroy her parents and feast on their bowels. she has gas. she farts. she refuses to go back to sleep. so after another hour of bribing her to doze off again, we cave and feed her and play with her and she is her usual adorable angelic self again. until ... the afternoon nap. same drill: she sleeps for 20 to 40 minutes (this is a nap that should last 2 hours or so) and begins caterwauling to the undead. add all those numbers up and you know what? SHE IS NOT GETTING ENOUGH SLEEP. and there is nothing we can do. we let her cry it out. we give her gripe water, which incidentally is an excellent name for a band, or Mylicon (R), which isn't. we rub her wee tum. we refrain from taking her out of the crib. we follow all the experts' advice and it's all for naught.

last night mrs nice guy had to go to a neighborhood meeting thing. she left at 7:20 pm, when the baby had just gone to sleep. usually, she goes right down at night, no problem, for the duration of the evening. so i figured, while mrs nice guy was at her meeting i would whip up a scrumptious thai chicken curry soup (in the current
Cuisine at Home, check it out even though they actually call for duck, simply delicious). since i was starting with pre-cooked meat, the magazine says this recipe should only take about 45 minutes to an hour, start to finish. aha! but the editors of cuisine at home neglected to factor in the TWO HOURS it would take me to subdue my screaming hellchild who launched into full anti-aircraft mode seconds after her mother left the house. she was still screaming when mrs nice guy came home. i was so frustrated at one point that i put the baby down, went into my room ... and punched myself in the head as hard as i could. i had never done such a thing before. i will not lie to you: it hurt not only my head, but my hand as well. still, there was something oddly gratifying about it, even though i had a headache all day today and it hurts to type. anyway, i was so glad when mrs nice guy came home to stick her tits in the infant's face because i didn't really want to eat thai baby curry soup.

but, oh, i was prepared to.


Blogger DesertJade said...

YESSS! Ya gotta love the Mr. insane hallucinations and talking to myself guy.

It it totally worth the wait... and I almost went to bed! Thanks for sacrificing an hour of your precious sleep for your faithful readers. Now get some sleep before the hellchild wakes...

8/19/2005 1:14 AM  
Blogger Chickie said...

I hear that Thai baby curry soup is quite delicious.
You must be sure to give us a review if you ever indulge in it. Might want to type with one hand and eat with the other so you could finish before "they" come to take you away.
Have you tried a do-it-yourself exorcism for baby nice guy?

8/19/2005 5:59 AM  
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8/19/2005 6:57 AM  
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8/19/2005 7:07 AM  
Blogger Corinne said...

OH.MY.GOSH. I'm laughing so hard right now... the best part was imagining you locking yourself in a room, and punching yourself in the head a' la' fight club style. classic...

8/19/2005 8:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So glad you're back, we needed the laugh, we were hoping that begging would bring you back. You provide us with our daily belly laugh. Thanks.

8/19/2005 9:14 AM  
Blogger Candace said...

I promise you it will end. It will feel like the ending will be an eternity from now, but it will end!

But you'll never forget, no sir....

8/19/2005 9:29 AM  
Anonymous BIYF said...

Just wait until the REAL screaming begins my friend. The screaming at around 8 months when they've had enough of the exersaucer, or pack and play, and decide that it's time for you to stop whatever your doing and pick them up RIGHT FUCKING NOW. It's not so much a piercing scream, althought that does on occasion happen. It's more of an extended moan, as if they are lying on the battlefield, dying a slow death. Think of the lingering dull pain after you get kicked in the nuts. That about sums it up.

8/19/2005 11:36 AM  
Blogger birthfree said...

That is so true and so funny... in that 'been there' kind of way. Whew... I don't envy you the memories.

Have you read "The Happiest Baby On the Block"? The swaddling technique in there is a godsend. I promise. Even if she doesn't think she likes it, try it a few more times and she may very well like it. I just went to the bookstore and read the swaddle part... worth the 15 min. endevor.

AND, get yourself a Maya sling - so she can be happy and you can be happier. Worth it, promise. (Check ebay for cheap prices).

Also, The No Cry Sleep Solution by Elizabeth Pantley has some good thoughts on sleep, but don't know if you have real time to read. The routine aspect of her book is fantastic though.

Keep working on a solution, you'll find one that works.

8/19/2005 1:41 PM  
Blogger Hostile in Ohio said...

Hmm, is she still (whispers so the baby police won't hear) a tummy sleeper? If not, try that if you feel comfortable. Otherwise, prop her up a little. Does she eat right before a nap? If so, try to put some more space btwn there. Or try to really "work" her right before a nap (play bicycle with her legs, stand her on your lap). That will get the gas out and let her sleep. If gas is the issue.

None of those medicines worked for my son for gas.

If she will sleep in the car...nevermind... uhm...a swing or the sling might work.

Or if she's a real PITA about it, perhaps look into getting an Amby bed for her, seriously, they are AMAZING. Better for fussy babies, but it may work for her too.

Remember, it doesn't last forever :-) I only had an hour at a time day and night tops for 15 months, then he became a champion sleeper all on his own. Kids change from time to time, is she's suddenly developed a new skill then sleep can change while her mind is "processing" that. Check out NCSS (No Cry Sleep Solution) great book with great suggestions.

8/19/2005 2:51 PM  
Anonymous Jujubee said...

I read your blog with a sense of wonder and horror at what lies ahead. (My own baby is 3 weeks old.) Thanks for the heads up.

8/19/2005 10:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

okay, so am i the only one that read the headpunching thing as a serious thing, and not an attempt at humor on mr ng's part? because, mr ng, i get it completely. must have been distressing for you, to have such intense feelings toward or about your baby, but it really is a normal part of parenting, just little discussed. so getting those feelings out makes sense--and i bet the release you felt was not unakin to that felt by girls/women who cut, or do any self-harming thing like that that lets them experience that feeling. and, you know, go you, for not directing the violent feeling toward infant ng. but you also deserve not to direct them toward yourself, either.

8/20/2005 6:04 AM  
Blogger Lesley said...

I, too, promise you that it gets better (around about the same time as they start putting their fingers in electric sockets, throwing food on the walls, tottering precariously on pieces of furniture........) God, who am I kidding, it never gets better

8/20/2005 9:05 AM  
Blogger mr. nice guy said...

thanks, lesley. i feel great now.

8/20/2005 10:11 AM  
Anonymous minty said...

at our house we used to go for the 'putting the fist through the hollow-core door' approach, or the even more astounding 'putting the fist through the drywall' move.

it DOES SO get better. and sometimes it gets downright fabulous, but one thing it never gets is CONVENIENT.

i found it handy to relinquish all of my territory and agenda very early in the drama, so i wouldn't be faced with endless disappointment and frustration. it's not exactly like being a martyr, or well, maybe it is.

8/20/2005 10:21 AM  
Blogger Doc Think said...

Oh, you of great hope. You have all symptoms of a new parent. You think that somehow the kid will be tamed. News flash...they are WILD, not domestic, animals. Like the tiger that ate Sigfried (or Roy), you really can't trust them.

They don't sleep when you want them to sleep, eat what you want them to eat, do their homework when you want them to do their homework, pick up their rooms when you ask, or just about anything. Worse, sometimes they will act like they are compliant--then they flip the script.

Solution? Just lay back and enjoy it. Good luck!

8/20/2005 12:07 PM  
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11/17/2005 6:12 PM  

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