Drat and Tarnation

March 8, 2011 at 2:34 am (Uncategorized)

Good grief. Another fortnight has gone by… and I tell you what, time management is a very different thing on someone else’s timetable! Baby J doesn’t always sleep much during the day, but as he has started sleeping through the night, I am not about to start messing with him. Take your victories where you find them, I say, and that’s a biggie. He is asleep right now, actually, which is how I am able to spit this out at all, but when he’s awake and alert, I must admit I do feel compelled to interact with him. I find him impossible to ignore when he is clearly ready for some conversation and play. He seems to sense this magnetic pull, too, which means he quickly makes his presence felt if I do try to leave him hanging – or rather, swinging – in order to get anything else done. So, no sleep for Baby J means no writing for me.

His is not a placid personality; his most recent trick is still screaming his head off despite the gradual abatement of the Meanies (although he’s had a number of sporadic bouts the past few days). Now he’s not screaming in pain, he’s decided he despises car travel, so he’s screaming about that instead. I do wish he’d decided to make himself the exception in some other field. I keep telling him babies love cars, babies sleep in cars, but he is deaf to all persuasion, as am I deaf to just about everything by the time we reach our destination. I just don’t understand it. He has this absurdly plush throne, so comfort is not the problem. We’ve tried adjusting the headrest just in case it was too tight, but beyond that, we are out of ideas. And I am not embellishing on any level when I say he screams his guts out from A to B. In fact, as I was saying to the Darklings only this morning, he screams a lot. Obviously earlier it was pain-related – and it is a really different thing, there’s no confusion about that – but now it’s some unidentified general outrage.  He’s not standing for it, whatever it is. No sir! He’s not having it at all.

Like his mother, he loathes being woken, so transferring him is a godforsaken nightmare. Moving him definitely kicks off the screams. And I wonder too if he isn’t lonely and bored back there in his car seat, since he is very curious and sociable, and he can’t even see out the window in the car because of the (absolutely essential) sunshade. Perhaps I need to affix something of interest to the straps or backseat so he’s got a diversion… it has to be worth a shot. Anyway, as a new driver it makes for a pretty intense initiation, but I suppose it’s excellent experience.

A-a-a-anyway, this wasn’t supposed to be a Baby J Blog. At this rate I’ll have to rename the whole thing. DoctorDi? Who? But what else have I been doing?! NOTHING, that’s what. Well, I finally managed to file my woefully late monthly feature for the Varuna Alumni News yesterday – a week late, no less. I must confess I found it rather challenging finding sufficient blocks of time to write and edit it this time; leaving freelance jobs to the last minute used to work much more effectively than it does now. Deadlines have always worked for me, but now I realise I have to be much steadier in my approach. Next month’s feature I shall have to start now, whenever an opportunity arises. No wonder so many parents plan the week’s meals in advance. It makes complete sense to me now.

If you’d like to know what makes me want to scream, it’s this: instead of finishing this post, I’ve just spent over an hour – that precious period in which Baby J was sound asleep, whereas now he is due for a feed – dissembling the Varuna News into smaller attachments to resend. I discovered an error message from yesterday sitting in my Spam folder, so the file didn’t go at all. Imagine me biting down hard on my knuckles and you’ve about captured the mood here at Poo HQ.




  1. Lilian Nattel said,

    Oh too bad about the attachments. Setting something up about the car seat for baby’s amusement makes sense. He might just not like being buckled in. One of mine did, one of mine didn’t. For one it gave safety, the other found it an indignity. They are still much the same today, one very good at staying still, the other preferring to do everything while hanging upside down or at the very least leaning at a precarious angle.

    • doctordi said,

      Well, he’s not nearly so offended in the pram or the swinger, both buckle propositions, but we might recheck the position of the straps nonetheless. Fascinating, Lilian, isn’t it, how different two kids will be? I am finding it endlessly fascinating at mothers’ group and with the baby girl of N and A, the other couple of the share suite section of the birthing story. N and I have been in constant contact since; she’s been SUCH a sanity saver. Anyway, our two are so, so different.

  2. David said,

    I do think that the more observant and interactive a baby is, the more it hates the car seat. That’s proven true with my friends’ babies, at least. Providing something for him to look at/do might help.

    The screaming will end sooner or later, I’m sure. For your sake, I hope it’s sooner. 🙂

    • doctordi said,

      That’s good to know, David – and I suspect that’s what it is here. Everywhere else he has diversions, we just hadn’t been using the car enough to realise it hadn’t been Baby J Adjusted.

      Looking forward to the cessation of the screaming. He refuses to give me a release date, but he can’t hold out forever.

  3. charlotteotter said,

    But you manage to find the time to be funny! And for us! Thanks Di, your posts are always worth waiting for.

    Hope the screaming abates and Baby J learns to love travel. Also, good luck with the deadlines. I found those a nightmare with a baby in tow, but it is somehow all doable.

    • doctordi said,

      Aw, thanks, Charlotte! That’s the nicest thing for you to say, especially as I feel like THE biggest snore hazard at the moment.

  4. litlove said,

    It may just be that he wants to see your face and feels too separate from you in the back (unless he CAN see you, in which case, ignore me). The deadline thing is a bitch. I found the stress of never knowing when I’d get anything done too great, and in the end had to fix up childcare, even if only for an hour here or there, so I had some reliable time to work in. But you’ll find the right solution, I’m sure. Oh and language is brilliant – any language cuts the screaming down – coo and gurgle and make funny noises to baby J and he might extend his range of articulation and not just scream every time he wants to express himself! Of course he might not – I just remember every issue as being about trial and error!

    • doctordi said,

      Yeah, LL, I am going to look into a babysitter too. Even just a half day one day a week for dedicated writing time would be FANTASTIC. Just knowing that was my reliable window would be great.

      Mmm, I talk, make funny noises, coo in response and even sing to him constantly. CONSTANTLY. Maybe he’s screaming about my singing…

  5. Pete said,

    I’m impressed that you’re managing to post at all. And yay re the night-sleeps. The car-seat advice sounds good. We’re trying to take things day by day here but I find that several days tend to gang up on me at the same time! I keep telling myself that things get better. Anyway, great to hear from you and say hi to Baby J from Baby F!

    • doctordi said,

      Hello to Baby F from Baby J!!!!

      Never has the expression ‘welcome to my world’ seemed more apt, Pete!! Actually, things got hard for us at the six week mark; if you’re finding it tough now, rumour has it your reprieve will arrive around the time ours ended! HANG IN THERE, you won’t believe how quickly you pass through the really hellish weeks!

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