If Looks Could Kill

As much as one can have a routine with an infant, we have one at dinner/night time for Rex.  Mr. X gives Rex his bottle, gets him swaddled for nighty-night time and then hands him off to me for the final deliverance to Mr. Sandman (basically, rocking with a little binkie action, if so required).

For the past two nights, Mr. X has followed this routine and handed off to me a swaddled, full and seemingly content infant who would appear to be sleep putty in my gentle, maternal hands.  On both nights, within thirty seconds of this handoff, Rex has started his wind up to scream – the brow furrows, then the mouth puckers, the binkie is forcibly ejected and air is sucked in for maximum shriekage.  And, then he lets loose requiring me to use extraordinary measures to not only calm him but get him to sleep.

In these situations, I know the exact culprit for this drama.  My baby has gas.  Bad, bad gas.

Now, Mr. X is getting really good at this baby thing.  But, the burping is still an elusive success.  He scales the burps he gets from Rex from small to really big.  At the handoff, he informed me that he got a ‘medium’ burp out of the babe but I wasn’t too concerned because said child looked to be extremely peaceful and content, two things he is most certainly not if he has bothersome gas.  If there is one thing that this child appears to love, however, it is proving me wrong.  Within what felt like seconds of me settling into the rocker with him in my arms, he started screeching.  I sat him up, which was not easy considering that he was swaddled like a little baby mummy, and did the pat, rub, pat routine on his back.  I got nothing except continued crying.

It was also about this time that my only view of Mr. X was his back as he headed out of the nursery to what I was sure was greener (and quieter) pastures.  I wasn’t feeling particularly magnanimous towards my husband at that moment.  In fact, I was pretty convinced that he had deliberately done a poor job feeding Rex and belching him leaving me to deal with the aftermath. Intellectually, I knew that this wasn’t true.  I knew that he did his best, but dammit, I was still left holding the bag screeching infant.  If looks could kill, the one I gave his back would have been a mortal wound.

I finally managed to calm the beast into a fitful slumber.  But, when he woke up (very uncharacteristically) 45 minutes later, it was Mr. X who came to the rescue and got Rex calmed down and back to sleep.  It was a good thing that looks can’t kill after all.

11 thoughts on “If Looks Could Kill

  1. Oh! Poor you! Poor Rex and poor Mr. X! Having an infant who only has the method of crying for communication sucks…we’re on our third go ’round (all with a little outside assistance btw) and I STILL find it incredibly sucky, frustrating and whatever words you can think of depending on the level of volume, intensity and my own emotional state from my day/night…

    You may not be looking for advice on this one, but I’m sure you’ll get tons…first, load up on the duck tape – you can use it for Mr. X so he can’t escape the nursery, you can use it for the dog, the cat, the baby, the supplies…it’s very handy…secondly, make sure you have a good stock of liquor. Choose your poison based on your favorites, but make sure you’ve got at least double that which you think you’ll go through in a 3-month period of time…

    OK – seriously – we never experienced any colic, or bad gas with the 2 that had no formula. The one that had formula had horrible gas (ironically enough, that’s our son…coincidence? I think not!). I found Little Remedies Tummy Drops to be very helpful for thos times when all the burping methods didn’t help. We tried the “over the shoulder, whack ’em on the back” method, the “sit on my lap while I hold your wobbly head in my hand and thump your back”, as well as the “lay on my lap on your tummy hoping the burp will be squished out”, and even the “lay on your back on my legs while I massage your tummy with my knuckles”…nothing, and I mean NOTHING would get the darn gas out…poor little guy…

    I think of you as I hold Littlest One and feed and burp and change her…

    I am assuming that with the change in posting frequency that you are enjoying that little boy more than you are struggling! I hope you’re finding the balance of being Mom, Wife, and You a bit easier these days as things improve with Rex.

  2. It may also be one of those damned sleep regressions (google ask moxie sleep regression for overview). Sometimes, babies just shuck their routines.

    But then sometimes men are half-assed about their infant care. And it can be so very, very annoying when you know the buck always has to stop with you.

  3. It is difficult being the one left–quite literally–holding the baby while one’s husband swans off downstairs!

    The thing that used to annoy me most was when Mr H slept through entire night feeds!

  4. Ah, this stage was killer for us. Between gas and the PURPLE crying stage, I was ready to take a sleeping pill and give my son one too. We lived on Mylicon drops, sleeping upright, lots and lots and lots of dancing with him, and probably adrenalin. Personally, I think the childcare experts should open their homes to sleep deprived mothers by saying, “Here, you put a stamp on his butt, mail him to us, and we’ll keep him until you call us.” For me, that would be until I got enough sleep to feel sane and also had a few days to go do something all.by.myself. There are also days (and I’m having one today) where as a mom you just want to run away from both your husband and child, go to a spa on some distant island, and drink yourself into oblivion without the consequence of a hangover, and then return sometime later. I love being a mama and a wife, but some days it just feels like too much. As far as the sleep regression thing….I hate to admit it, but it’s true and it can happen at any stage. We are in one now combined with a respiratory infection that makes breathing for the kiddo hard. I was ready to throw a shoe at my husband when he started blaming me for not having our child on a routine. Maybe we don’t run like the army here, but we do have a routine. May you get through this with your sanity intact. (I’m wishing that for me too…..or a very large margarita.)

  5. Obviously, I have no words of wisdom (not that you asked for any), but it sounds like you’re adjusting really well to the addition of little Rex in your life. I hope it gets better with every passing day!

  6. What everyone else said! Babies are mysterious creatures, and husbands … oy! Don’t get me started. I got through my son’s first year one day at a time, one hour at a time. With lots of loud venting when I couldn’t take it anymore. We survived, but yes, it’s rough sometimes. And when the spouse who’s in the doghouse is the “preferred parent” of the hour, grrr. It hardly seems fair.

    When we were in the nightly 5-hour colic stage (which seemed like it went on forever), one of my friends showed me a trick where you lay the baby on his back, hold his feet in your hands, and move his legs one at a time up towards his belly and back, up and down like he’s riding a bicycle, pretty fast, working those gas bubbles out. She swore it saved her life with her kids. I thanked her kindly, and it might have worked once with our little guy, or maybe that was just random coincidence … but hey, thought I’d pass it along just in case. Gripe water was the only thing that really worked for us, and that just took the edge off.

  7. My little guy burps like an old man: loud and unapologetic. But when he doesn’t, I know the gas is a’comin’. We swear by an elevated mattress and Mylicon drops in his bottles, as others have said. Even still, my husband has managed to sleep through every single night waking with every single kid. It’s amazing!

  8. Oh yes, I hear you. The gas, oh dear God, the gas. No telling which way it’s gonna come out, but it’s definitely coming. And I’m resenting being the heavy, though I knew it was going to be that way. D’s a marshmallow. I keep telling myself that it’s better to be feared than loved….

    Mylicon drops didn’t help sh*t with this child, formula and breast milk both produced mountains of gas, plus the girl would have her last meal coming out her nose if you laid her down too soon after eating (preemie thing).

    A trick my mom showed me is to cuddle her facing your chest, her head directly on your elbow with her right arm hanging below, and hug her up tight. Take that pacifier and stick it in her mouth then turn her whole body in toward your chest so she can’t spit it out. No crying allowed. I thought she was suffocating the child then realized she’d just gone to sleep. It was like flipping a switch, damndest thing I’ve ever seen.

    I’m just saying. In case you want to show Mr. X up at being the baby whisperer or something! 🙂

  9. Happened upon your blog searching for a pic of TCOYF.

    I couldn’t help but comment:

    1. There is no right way to do this mom thing-

    2. Your baby won’t remember being a baby, which is good because no one wants to remember the insanity of “postpartum” with much clarity.

    3. He loves you no matter… your best is good enough, especially because they have this miraculous ability to forgive anything.

    So keep rocking him (shooting daggers with your eyes or no), and tell yourself you’re enough.
    Because you are his mom, and you were meant to be.

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