Thursday, September 11, 2008

My Crazy Baby

Samantha, who is exclusively breast fed, is one crazy baby. While I truly do enjoy breastfeeding her, it's nice to get a break every once in a while and have my husband feed her my expressed milk from a bottle. S's pediatrician thought it would be a good idea to introduce the bottle at 3-4 weeks, after S had established a strong latch on the nipple. (Sorry to any guys who are reading this. I'm sure that if you want to read about nipples, this is NOT the context you prefer).

She did have a strong latch, so at the 4-week mark, Brian gave her a bottle. It went great! We intended to do this every day, but, well, we didn't. But we did do it a 2-3 times a week with no problem. Until...

I dunno, 2-3 weeks ago, S all of a sudden would NOT take the bottle. And when I say she would not take the bottle, I mean that when Brian put it in her mouth, she FREAKED out. She cried as if someone is was...I dunno, physically harming her (I can't even bring myself to give an example of how someone may physically harm my baby). It's the kind of cry where the baby doesn't breathe for a really long time. The kind of cry that makes me want to cry.

So wtf? This happened a couple of times and thank god I was around because I finally ended up breastfeeding her after the hysterics died down. We read the baby books to find out just what the hell the problem was. And you know what they said? The problem was ME! Supposedly, some babies do NOT take a bottle if mommy is around. They apparently can smell their mother's milk and want it from the source. Crazy babies. But this is NOT what makes my baby crazy.

For the next couple of weeks, whenever we wanted S to take a bottle, I had to make myself scarce, which in all honestly, is kind of annoying unless I legitimately have someplace to go. Then S took the bottle fine. When I did stay around, even if I was in a different room or on a different floor, forget it, the baby was not having it.

Last night, I wanted her to take a bottle because this weekend, Samantha will be sleeping over at Nonna's (grandma's) while Brian and I go to a wedding, and I am FREAKING out that she won't eat. Yes, yes, I understand that she'll probably be fine because I won't be around, but I can't help it. It's the first time we're leaving her.

So at about 7:30, in the middle of dinner, I notice S giving her hunger cues, right on time. Brian starts to prepare her bottle and I got out of there. I told him to call me either when they were done or if it wasn't happening. 20 minutes later I get a call from Brian...I assumed they had finished, but, no...crazy baby had been in hysterics for the past 20 minutes. I came back in to a baby that had calmed down, but to a husband that was totally frazzled.

I sat on the couch to BF her when Brian asked if he should throw the milk away (once heated up, you can't use it again). Usually I would say yes, but something made me think to keep it a little while longer and I asked him to bring it to me. I fed S. the breast on one side and she passed out on my lap for a couple minutes (What a life!). But when she woke up, instead of putting her on the other breast, I gave her a bottle AND SHE TOOK IT! FROM ME! WTF????

When I called Brian upstairs to view this, his jaw almost hit the floor. WTF, CRAZY BABY??? No, seriously, wtf? He thought it was just him, but I assured him it was not. I mean, she's taken the bottle from him many times before without incident, and in fact, I handed her over to him last night so she could finish the bottle, which she did.

I searched for an explanation: Had she been tired? Had she been too hungry? Was the milk too warm? I think it's no, no, and no.

She's just a crazy baby.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

The Worst Thing in the World

I have discovered what the worst thing in the world is. No, it's not the fact that many species of animals may become extinct due to the impact of global warming. No, it's not the crisis in Darfur. It's cutting a baby's fingernails.

If you are thinking, "How dare she compare the turmoil in Darfur to something as innocuous as cutting nails?" then you've obviously never done it before.

We all know babies are small, right? Well, these small babies have even smaller fingers. And these small fingers sport tiiiiiny fingernails. I mean tiiiiny!

I learned quickly that one cannot cut the fingernails of a baby while said baby is awake. Babies NEVER keep their hands still! So, you have to wait until s/he falls asleep, usually not a problem since babies sleep A LOT (more on this in a subsequent post). Hopefully the baby has fallen asleep on your lap, making it easier to maneuver his/her fingers to an angle where you can actually cut the nail without contorting your own body into some uncomfortable position. Now that you're all set, you will realize that you've forgotten all about the nail clippers and they're in a completely different room. If no one else is home, you'll need to get up and get them, but this will probably wake the sleeping baby, thus postponing your nailcutting endeavor. Whenever you do manage to have the clippers by you AND have your baby sleeping on your lap, you will notice that you are not the only person who thinks that baby nails are so incredibly tiny because the makers of your nailclippers have ATTACHED A MAGNIFYING LENS TO THE CLIPPERS!

When you examine the nails, you will see what feels like little sharp razor blades are truly only these soft little things that, I swear to god, are only 2 mm long. How the f*** are you supposed to cut something off that's only 2 mm long??? Answer: You just go for it.

So I went for it on my precious 2-month old daughter's little nails. It took forever because I wanted to be so careful to not catch her skin that most of the time I caught nothing. Then I got to her thumb. And I did catch her skin. From her peaceful slumber, Samantha let out a howl followed by some infant sobbing. I MADE MY CHILD BLEED! I felt so bad that I vowed to never cut her nails again. That is, until, she scratched my neck so hard that I thought I was bleeding.

So really, the only thing worse than cutting a baby's fingernails is NOT cutting a baby's fingernails.

A quick update: I actually wrote this post several days ago. Now Samantha's nails have become a little bit stronger and I've discovered that I can bite them off! Yes, gross or not, I bite my baby's nails off. My life is SO much better, as I'm sure is hers. Global warming and Darfur can go back to being the worst things in the world now.