Brody is 7 months old. The cliche sayings of how time flies are so true. He is a happy boy who loves to smile at himself in the mirror. Whenever he rolls over he has a look on his face that is a mixture of surprise and pride at what he has done. He loves playing with Hamish, the puppy. He holds out his hand while Hamish licks his fingers (and I wait until they are finished and immediately wipe his hands off).
He is a big boy, weighing in at about 9kg/20lbs. I know of two little girls who were the same weight at 1.5 years old! He loves his food. Some of his favorites include lamb cous cous, spinach mixed with blueberries, and mangos.
I am currently holding my little boy as he sleeps. The past couple weeks have been a bit tougher for him and for us. What seems a long time ago now, he was a fairly good sleeper. He would easily go into his crib wide awake, we would read him a story and he would go to sleep. But now he rolls around his crib until he puts himself in a corner with his head against the bars and then starts crying. But it’s not just crying, it’s more of a yell-scream! The first time he did in this situation I thought he must have severed a limb! But no, his limbs are attached and I have to go and adjust him and then he continues to yell-scream until I eventually do the forbidden “feed him to sleep”. But at this point, after 2 weeks and going onto the third, I will do whatever it takes. I keep trying to see if he can go to bed on his own, even doing a few minutes of the terrible “cry it out” but like I said, it’s not just crying. It doesn’t work so we will try again another time.
As usual in any of these times with Brody when something is not going well, I do lots of research in books and through Google. I also ask advice from a group of my friends who have a whole bunch of experience between them. And just to check in, I emailed the pediatrician a few times to make sure nothing dire is happening to him. So from my research, I came up with a list of potential things that could be wrong:
2. A cold with stuffy nose and sore throat
3. Rolling over and other new skills make him excited and unable to settle down to sleep, also can’t sleep in these new weird positions
4. He now knows that he doesn’t like being too far away from me and he wants to be as close as possible all the time
5. He’s hungry and can’t get enough food
6. He needs his own room to sleep in (currently logistically not possible but we are moving soon)
7. He’s too cold or too hot (how on earth do you dress a baby for the correct temperature?)
And so, since having a baby is so much guesswork, any or all of these could be happening. We have tried numerous things to see if we can help him sleep better: consistent bedtime routine, laying down with him to sleep (which works but not exactly what we want long term), breastfeeding him to sleep (also works), more naps, fewer naps, more food offered (he will ultimately only eat what he wants), more layers of clothes, fewer layers of clothes, and more! But the only things that are working right now are cuddles and closeness with mom, so that’s what we will go with until we see a hint of something else. I definitely don’t mind having lots of cuddles.
It’s all about my mindset. If I have my mind set on doing a bunch of tasks or running some errands then when Brody needs more time with me, it’s hard for me to adjust. But when I can set all that aside and focus on him, than its easy. I just look at his relaxed, sleeping face and it is more than worth it to spend this time with him.
Even if it means trying and failing to go out for dinner with my husband at a nice, fancy restaurant for the first time in forever. We ordered and got our drinks and had our first sip, when we got the call that Brody was awake and needing his mom. Or the next night when the same thing happened when I tried to go out with a couple girlfriends. Although it may sound like I go out often, these happened to be the only two nights I have attempted this basically since Brody was born! It felt frustrating and so restricted…”I couldn’t even get away for a couple of hours”. But to be even a few kilometers away from home when I knew Brody was so unhappy, was excruciating. I didn’t want him to be so sad when he needed me. Eventually he will ‘toughen up’ and won’t need his mom so much. But for now, it’s okay. I will be here. And some day I will get to go out again.
Brody is a light in our lives. He is truly special and amazing. There are some dark times when he is struggling with growing up but I am glad I can be here with him and do whatever I can to help him.
(He just woke up and gave me one of his beautiful smiles!)