Sunday, March 18, 2012

The Baby Coma

Little Man passed out at the dance studio with Paige, about three weeks ago.

I don’t know if you’ve heard of it before, but it’s a real thing. It’s that state that babies live in for the first couple months of their lives - completely unaware of what happens around them.  They sleep when they are tired, which is always. The wake only to eat, which inevitably makes them so tired again that their eyes roll back into their heads and they pass out, at the breast, with milk running down their chins – it’s a corresponding phenomena often referred to as Milk Drunk (a very technical term).  They could sleep through a rock concert. My son slept through the trains that pass only a couple blocks from our house – several times a night - and lay on their horns like they’re leading a holiday parade.
But then, I’m finding, something changes. Apparently somewhere around three months of age they start to become aware: aware of people who come to visit; aware of the hustle and bustle of their parents; aware of the dogs in their faces; aware of the jostling of the in and out of the car on errand days; painfully aware of trains. And so my poor baby boy has become overly tired several times in the past week because his Momma can’t figure out how to adjust with him. My errand running plans nearly always interfere with his plans for a good snooze.
My inexperienced, first time Mommy brain thinks that the answer to this problem is a good schedule -regular naps that are easily planned around. The thing is, I have no idea how to establish one. I sat down two nights ago and wrote one out. It looked beautiful on my yellow legal pad: hour for hour descriptions of a perfectly harmonized Drake and Mommy day. I went to bed determined that the next day was going to hum along according to my new plan. I’m sure the veteran mommies out there are laughing at me right about now. Because that is just not how it works. If there is one thing babies are good for, it’s reminding their parents that life does not always (read “ever”) work out the way you had planned.
So for the past two days I’ve just been paying attention to the clock as Drake did his own thing, and I’m amazed/concerned. Little Man spends the first half of his day in almost perfect one hour increments: one hour awake, one hour asleep. Later in the day, he stretches the “awake” portions to something more like two hours. That’s just not gonna work. There is no way to run an errand – and be back at the house in time to put him down! – in one hour. Not gonna happen. Not to mention the crazy amounts of gas I would waste if I only ever ran one errand at a time.
What do I do? Is there a way to help encourage him to stay awake longer? He is so sad when he’s tired, it sort of breaks my heart to think of doing it. I would love any advice or feedback.

1 comment :

  1. i say earlier in the day seemed to work the best as the baby has just had a decent nights sleep and so seems less inclined to be horribly upset with the jostling about. the afternoon errand runs tend to lead to crankier babies who really want that good, solid nap time.