It was not a good yesterday.
I sent this note to Kris who is traveling for work. My introduction went something like: “Outside of my miscarriages, the worst parenting experience of my life . . .” Discussing these things with the absent parent is always a conundrum for me – he cannot physically alleviate the problem which causes him stress at work, but then on the other hand, how’s that cushy hotel room?
Farrah awake from 1:30-3:45am
Awake at 5:00 for milk
Awake at 6:45 for good (Arlo up at 6:00)
For the next 16 hours Farrah slept a total of 1 hour 20 minutes, the longest span being 40 minutes.
Arlo did not nap.
What I tried all day and night (not in order but in all combinations):
- baby bjorn
- skin-to-skin contact
- laptop white noise
- hair dryer
- football hold
- tummy lying
- radio static
- dim lights
- no lights
Things escalated severely 9-9:30pm in terms of crying and body tension. I became very scared and worried. I could not help her. I was terrified something was wrong all the while worried about Arlo waking. I couldn’t stop shaking and was nauseous. I texted our neighbors Seth and Steph at 10:00pm, Steph called, heard the screaming and ran over. I was outside at this point in the cold, desperate to try anything different and just praying Arlo would be okay (I did not have the wits to grab the monitor and since removing the bed rail
, he’s fallen out twice). Steph gave me a hug and expertly took Farrah while I just sat down and sobbed. She soothed her. We went back in the house and she convinced me to lay down. Farrah was now barely awake and quiet. Steph took her to another room and I slept. I have no idea when she brought her back to me. Farrah nursed, Steph left and we slept until 5am. Arlo up at 6am but convinced him somehow to stay in his room. Farrah went back to sleep.
A typical case of too tired to sleep but atypical in my experience. I never want to go to there again.
Today I feel grateful but unhinged. Her every cry makes my stomach lurch and heart seize for fear of another episode. I can’t stop crying. I’m rattled and jumpy. All of these feelings are heightened by the exhaustion and sleep deprivation. I feel not unlike I did after birth only without, you know, the empowerment and hormone high. Today I give her everything, I accept everything – if she wants to be held all day long, she will be. If she wants to sleep while I’m wearing her all day long or just hang out there until my back cracks in half, she can. I will do absolutely anything to avoid another night like last night. People – I will go out and buy a pacifier. (*gasp*) Is it fear that drives this total acquiescence or a mother’s unconditional love?
Seven weeks old and I am her willing, adoring slave but seriously Daughter – you did not have to test me so. You already had me, didn’t you know?