Thursday, January 26, 2006

Hippies Have Guilt Too

The baby still sleeps with us, but not for long. I'm all for cosleeping, if the runt actually sleeps in bed with you. My runt does not. He thrashes around, pulls hair, and sticks his fingers up my nose. This week I've had two bloody noses. He also sleeps in the middle of the bed, which, because it's a king, has a big foam lump, and as a result he rolls downhill into my crevice. Then I'm forced to put my arm up around his head, or under him, or under me, or straight up in the air. My shoulder and elbow now have tendinitis and I can't raise my right arm above the level of my chest without terrible pain. And he wakes up at 5:30 every morning squirming like a worm on a hook, and scratches and rips at the various parts of my face until I push him over to Jim's side. Then he donkey kicks me in the boobs a couple times for good measure. No more you little bastard! Okay, you're not a bastard, because you look just like your dad (Indian name, Pretends to Sleep). I do call you a little asshole sometimes, but only as I'm stuffing a sock up my bleeding nose and trying to protect my boobies from the onslaught. I don't really mean it half the time.

Why have we waited almost 9 months to remedy this, you ask? Because I have hippie momma guilt. I typically try to take the progressive, Patchouli-wearing crowd route with respect to parenting (except for all that La Leche nonsense about nursing children until their first day of Naturopath school). I think hippies think outside the patriarchical box, and I like doing the things that seem to come naturally, rather than what those jackasses from What to Expect tell me. So I've just kept sticking it out, thinking my chi would somehow meld with his Chi and we would slumber as one mother-child being. But no. And now I've got a willful, highly-mobile monster on my hands. I screwed this up bad! Bad holistic momma! Bad bad bad. Now I'm going to have set up the crib and jail my little prize fighter, and I'm a little ate up about it. There's going to be some crying tonight. By me. For all the injury and lost sleep, he still smells so good and is so achingly adorable for those blissful 10 minutes.


Blogger Arabella said...

I suspected those What to Expect people were just this side of full of crap. Thanks for confirming my suspicions! I like your what-comes-naturally philosophy of parenting.

1/26/2006 8:45 AM  
Blogger V said...

Unwanted advice....
We had my daughter on a futon mattress on the floor in her own room. It worked out great...she could crawl or waddle in when she needed some lovin', but still go to bed in her own place, away from tender mom noses and boobies. I couldn't take the crib guilt. Wussie hippie....I tell yuh....

1/26/2006 9:00 AM  
Blogger Tink said...

I look at the picture and I think, "Awwww, what a little angel!" Man, they learn that deceptive trick YOUNG don't they? Good luck on caging him. You're boobs (not to mention arms and nose) will thank you.

1/26/2006 9:01 AM  
Anonymous TB said...

I'm hoping I will be able to follow your lead and take the realistic hippie approach to child rearing too. Like Arabella, I take the Girlfriend's Guide and the What to Expect with a shaker of salt, but not having had my own yet, I could never be sure.

Good luck getting him adjusted to the crib. I hope you both get a full 8 hours tonight.

And that picture is adorable. You make beautiful children.

1/26/2006 9:27 AM  
Blogger Mrs. Harridan said...

I always wondered if it was wonderful bliss having the baby in bed with you. Thank you for debunking the myth!

God, he really looks like a little angel. My ovaries are dancing.

1/26/2006 10:19 AM  
Blogger mama_tulip said...

My GAWD he is such a cutie. Lookit him sleeping with the blankies...awwwww...

I'm kind of in the same position here...because Oliver screamed so much so often before we figured what the fuck was wrong with him, he's spent a lot of time in our bed. We never did this with Julia. I'd say he's slept in his crib for maybe a week total in the almost 6 months he's been here. But, um...I love sleeping with him. ;)

1/26/2006 10:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

yo. ferberize this child. it'll be one painful week and then he'll be able to sleep on his own. freedom for you. and for the baby too!

1/26/2006 11:59 AM  
Blogger Jaye Wells said...

Forget Ferber; forget all that crap. Do what your instincts tell you.

Mignon, I didn't have my kiddo sleep with my except for a few times in the very beginning when nothing but a teat in his mouth would get him to zonk out (strangely this method also works on husbands). But I sympathize with your plight. Good luck.

1/26/2006 12:37 PM  
Blogger wordgirl said...

None of our kids slept with us. Double bed...not big enough for all of us. The boys slept in a Moses basket next to our bed for a month or two, but got too active even for that. Then we moved them to a crib in the next room with a monitor glued to my ear. None of our kids ever expressed a desire to sleep with us anyway. Only one kid ever had real nightmares and, when asked if he'd like to come to bed with us, he'd say "No thank you". I did do the early morning nursing there and the one right before bed, but that 2 a.m. one had to be done in another room. There was screaming and pooping and nursing and pooping again. All very noisy. do you have sex with a kid in the bed with you? Daddy is a hippie-type, but he wasn't about to give up sex opportunities. No...WE'RE the bad parents. Not you!

1/26/2006 1:08 PM  
Blogger Mignon said...

Ferber has always been a dirty word to me, but that was because Madeleine was an extremely sensitive infant. Any attempts at letter her cry it out was traumatic for everyone for days. But Quinn's different. He and Ferber would be the bestest of friends. He goes to sleep on his own just fine, but I have to admit it just didn't feel right the couple times I had him sleep in a cradle at night. Now I don't know what feels right, except for my shoulder, which definitely doesn't.

Creativity is the spice of life, Wordgirl. Let's just say we really should have curtains.

He really is an angel, and thank you all for that. In fact I look at that picture and start lactating. But the middle-of-the-night craziness must stop...

1/26/2006 1:29 PM  
Anonymous LetterB said...

Ummm... why don't you just eat him? Oh my god, I might. What a muffin.

1/26/2006 5:46 PM  
Blogger wordgirl said...

He is gorgeous, that one!If I wasn't so far out of the game, that pic would make me lactate, too. Ditto about crying it out. It was torture for me and never could get into that. I would go into the room with them and rock them until they slept. One person even said to close the door and let them cry. Hu-what??? I would NEVER close the door and allow my kid in his crib to think he was all alone and unable to be heard. God...just the thought makes me heave.


1/26/2006 7:57 PM  
Blogger Ditsy Chick said...

I slept with all 3 of mine and I kicked each one out when they were younger and younger. I have a slipped disk in my back, my arms ached constantly and I was half off the bed every night.

The minute the last one was gone, I ached to hold them. I snuck in to see them sleep. Addictive little bastards.

Your little guy is just a doll, I don't believe he is anything but sweet, sweet, sweet.

1/26/2006 9:15 PM  
Blogger DebbieDoesLife said...

I'm with Wordgirl on this. Neither my hubs or I could sleep if one of the kids were in the bed. And the old saying, If Momma Ain't Happy....rings true for Momma not having enough sleep.

We always let them in if they woke up and came into the room but always put them back into their own beds soon after they were soothed.

Plus, I just needed a break and going to my own bed and night without anyone grabbing my boobs....ooops, that would be hubs! Never mind.

1/27/2006 4:35 AM  
Blogger Dawn said...

Ours is 7 and starts out in her bed every night. Then gets up and crawls into our bed from about 12 am till "get up for school time"

I gave up the ferber ghost a LONG time ago.

In fact, if you feel like you need a read - I wrote my feelings out a while ago...

1/27/2006 8:18 AM  
Blogger Orange said...

Ben was a great co-sleeper for a good couple years. Then he started kicking—it wasn't so restful after that! Still took a couple more years to dislodge him from the bed. What can I say? We were pushovers.

1/27/2006 5:19 PM  
Blogger Orange said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

1/27/2006 5:20 PM  
Anonymous 1 of 2 Dads in Dresden said...

I think you just do what bests fits the person (and they all are quite different little persons, aren't they?). We really tried co-sleeping until a traveling experience with a pack & play and a smaller bed taught us that our daughter slept much better out of our bed... and so did we. I too have hippy guilt. Maybe we were trying to make up for lack of mom with the Maya wrap sling, Baby Bjorn and as much contact time as possible, but the co-sleeping just didn't work for any of the three of us.

I just wish I could say that end of co-sleeping improved our sex lives notably :(

1/29/2006 5:04 AM  

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