Friday, September 2, 2011

Watching him cry

Of all the emotions I feel as a first-time parent, the hardest stuff comes when my son is crying. I don't like it and have realized I have more "fixer" tendencies than I thought I did. If it's just a random cry for a couple seconds here or there that's one thing, but when he's in prolonged agony over something that I can't figure out, that's harder. Worse, sometimes it's a thing I can't fix.

I go through the usual steps when he's crying a bunch. Check the diaper, take a look at the last time he ate or look for signs that he's rooting, or see if he's squirming a lot (which usually means painful digestion). Generally when I know what the issue is, I have an idea how to help. Even if my ability is limited, it feels like I'm doing something.

Generally he doesn't cry a lot, but he does do it in waves. Such as tonight, when he is hard to console because he's having trouble digesting even the gentle formula we have him on as a supplement.

I've gotten better at diagnosing problems, but sometimes it's a mystery. Those are the times that suck. Not only can I not help, I don't even know what the issue is. Babies cry for lots of reasons but it's his only way of telling me things. The folks in our classes said you'll figure out the meanings of cries, but so far I have nothing on that one. I'm better at body language when he's actually moving about.

This will get better as he learns to communicate with us in ways other than crying, of course. In the meantime it's a lot of sleeplessness and worry as I try to discover what's bothering him. Sometimes I can fix it, sometimes I can't, and sometimes he needs to cry it out. I'm learning how to tell the difference.


Post #79 in my 90-in-90 blog challenge. Blog with us and join the fun. I'll be blogging both here and on myprofessional blog for the challenge. For more about the 90/90 challenge, read about my call for participants. The blogs participating are on the list at the right, or follow us on the #LUBlogTribe hashtag on Twitter

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