29 Nov 2012

Dark Day

Yesterday was a dark day. Actually, the whole 24 hour period was pretty dark. Juffin and I had a stupid argument, the Mushroom wouldn't sleep, the house looks like a bomb hit it and we can't seem to get into any kind of routine at all.

Tuesday evening commenced with the Mushroom being overtired.  He's starting to rebel re having sleeps during the day.  He was fine in the morning and then we tried that stupid Baby Bjorn and it went downhill from there.  Mushroom just won't settle and when he finally does, only sleeps for half an hour or so, not good enough.  This makes for an unmanageable little Mushroom.  So Juffin gets home and we have an evening of struggle.  I start tea whilst he has cuddles, he finishes tea whilst I feed the Mushroom.  We then take turns eating our dinner.  Which sucks.  As dinner is pretty much the only time of the day where we can connect as adults. Up until now we have managed to get Mushroom into bed by 8-9pm and we wait so we can eat dinner together.  This isn't happening anymore.  And it's shite.

I'm already upset because I can't get the Mushroom down to sleep and I feel pretty stupid re the Baby Bjorn thing.  When we're finally both in bed, exhausted and drained, I stupidly bring up something that shouldn't be discussed just before bed and we get into it.  I'm in tears, and whilst we don't go to sleep angry and all is forgiven, I feel absolutely crap.

1.30am rolls around, only 2 hours after Juffin and I have had our disagreement, and the Mushroom wakes up.  I have the light very dim, no talking, little eye contact and we do our feed quietly.  He drifts back to sleep and I try to put him back into his hammock.  He's not having a bar of it.  2 hours of 'it's ok, Mummy's here' (read 'I'm going to throw you at the wall if you don't go to f-ing sleep soon!') sh shush SHHHH'ing and a very grizzy Mushroom finally passes out.  I then cry myself to sleep as I'm so exhausted, my boobs are dry, my eyes may as well be too.

Less than 2 hours later, the Mushroom is awake again and I actually throw my fist in the sky and say for fuck's sake, quite loudly.  I thought that shit was an exaggeration, that people really didn't do stuff like that only said they did to make their point.  But I did it.  That shit is real.  I'm totally spent.  I must be the worst mother in the world!  My eyes are practically glued together, my wrists hurt from holding the Mushroom's head up to my boob, I have a sore back from carrying him and rocking him back to sleep and I just want at least 2 hours more of sleep.  Of course, this doesn't happen.  It's like mad mushroom sense and he can tell that I'm mad/frustrated at him and he refuses to co-operate in spite.  I mean, I know this isn't true but far out dude!  What's that book that everyone was laughing about last year?  I love you but go the fuck to sleep?!

Juffin gets up and goes to work in a bit of a daze, having not gotten much more sleep than I have.  We're not fighting any more, and it's all resolved but I'm still emotional and teary when he leaves for work.  I'm sitting on the couch, feeding (as per usual!) and the tears are rolling down my face.  In my infinite wisdom (read moronic stupidity) I get on Google and check out some sites re getting baby to sleep and unmanageable 5 week old's.  As I sit there, crying and feeding my son, I am horrified to learn that according to the internet, I really could be the worst fucking mother on the planet.  I may not be doing anything correctly at all!!  I had my suspicions that I was a bit crap, but to see it there, on the internet, far out!

Insert the following disclaimer here: I would like to add that today, as I'm writing this, I'm aware that I was totally over-reacting and once again, showing inherent stupidity by taking the words of strangers and not professional people which are probably utter bullshit to heart.  Google, once again, is not my friend.  Will I ever learn?!    

We are doing demand feeding, ie when the Mushroom indicates signs of hunger, I feed him.  This is generally every 2.5 to 4 hours.  Except in the evening when he wants to feed on and off for a couple of hours until bedtime.  According to numerous websites and baby books, we should have a well established routine which goes something like this: feed, play then sleep.  However, my Mushroom wants to feed, play for only 5 or 10 minutes, feed, then sleep, if I can get him to sleep at all.  I mean he's hungry, I'm not going to deny him food because he's hungry! I'm also not going to let my 5 week old son, cry himself to sleep.  He's 5 weeks old.  He doesn't know anything and crying is his only way of communicating with me.

In tears I send an SOS text to my girlfriend and contact the child health clinic and book in for some new parent sessions.  With help on the way, I go to make myself a giant coffee, only to find that the Juffin has consumed all the f-ing milk again.  Pissed is an understatement.  My girlfriend will be around to rescue me soon, but in the meantime I put on my sneakers, put the crying mushroom in the pram and we hit the road.  When in doubt, walk it out.  Or walk to the shops so you can buy some fricking milk so you can make yourself a giant coffee and think about ways of dismembering your wonderful boyfriend who leaves you with no fricking milk in the morning....

After 5 minutes in the pram the Mushroom is out to it, and I'm feeling a little better.  We motor up to the shops and back, milk in hand, and I have a lovely shower and start to feel a little better.  My girlfriend comes out with smiles and a sympathetic ear and it becomes clear, once again, that I may be an irrational moron.  There is no right or wrong way to parent, you just have to do what works for you and your bubba.  Of course, it's always someone else who is the voice of reason.  Looking back, I just feel stupid, but that's what being a new Mummy is all about.  Sleep deprivation and jumping to ridiculous conclusions.  Oh and raising a kid and all that shiz... Yes that is my tongue firmly lodged in my cheek.

Fighting sleep in the pram
The Mushroom still fought sleep yesterday, all damn day the boy refused to sleep more than 20 mins at a time, but I felt that little bit better about myself.  I tried to remain calm, stayed away from Google and when 4pm rolled around I just put him in the pram again and off we went. I mean at least he's getting a little bit of sleep in there, and coincidentally, the bottle shop is only 500 metres away!  After the day I'd had, I deserved a red wine!  We managed to get him into bed by 8.30pm and he slept much better. He had his usual 1.30am feed but, holy cow, straight back to sleep!  And don't fall off your chair people, but he then slept through to 6.30am!!  Woohoo!  I'm trying not to jinx myself but I even managed to get him down for a sleep this morning and he's been out to it for 2 hours now.  Super awesome!!

Next time: We're attempting to attend some parties over the weekend and I'm hopefully purchasing a second hand jogger pram so we can start revving up the exercise - will keep you all posted!