Because Motherhood is a journey!


High needs not Fussy

I have been trying very hard to stay positive when it comes to my children and what may be percieved as their "faults". My son is what others have referred to as "horribly fussy", "demanding", "draining", and "never happy". I internalized those words for a little bit and I felt pretty desperate for the day that he would outgrow all these labels. I will admit he does fuss a lot and he doesn't sleep very much and he wants everything done just right. He even has a routine that must be followed to the letter for him to sleep and you never really know what technique will console him. But having said all of that I would like to state the obvious- he's a baby. Babies fuss and babies cry some more than others and thats life. When I stopped listening to people and acknowledged that this was my new life and I was going to be eternally tired and the house was never going to be up to par I was able to really enjoy my baby. I had been just "living" through the long crying jags and the lack of sleep and only enjoying the "good" moments and not all the time I was blessed to have with him. I had got it into my head that there was a certain way for this mothering thing to be done. My son was turning all that upside down. I could have saved a lot of heartache if i just had done what he was demanding that I do from the beginning. Once I gave in and reached the level of excellance that he requires from me, I realized that I wasn't getting the most out of my time with him. I was to busy trying to make him be a happy baby. Because as we all know a happy baby is the hallmark of good parenting right? I realized that not every adult is happy all the time even when nothing is wrong, so why should a baby be? I can't expect more from him then I do adults. Everyone can have a bad day or slip into a funk, even a baby. Like most parents I expected him to be a little adult in some ways. I wanted him to drift off to sleep by himself after I turned on his mobile and to not need to be constantly held. Well that has never happened and he's almost five months so I'm not holding my breath. He also made it painfully obvious that he was not going to accept any mechanical mommies either. Bouncy seats, swings, bassinets, cribs, playpens none of those are good enough for him. And to be honest none of them can compare to my arms, my breasts, my voice and my warmth. I was to busy comparing him to his older sister. She was such and easygoing baby and loved to sit alone with a toy at this age. He won't so I have changed the way I mother. I have discovered babywearing and not just in the snuggli or Moby for and hour or so, but in a fabric wrap or mei tai for long stretches a few times a day. I have always co-slept, but I know he is going to be in bed with us longer than his sister was. I also have just slowed life way down, I take the time to listen to his cues and do things at his pace. So he might be "harder" than other babies, but I have learned to rise to the challenge. We are almost five months into this experience and i can finally say it feels like my life is not so crazy and fractured as it was after his birth. I have decided to relabel him with positive terms. So instead of "horribly fussy" I say "he communicates well" instead of "demanding" I say "he expects excellence" instead of "draining" I say "he siphons off the energy he needs from me" and instead of "never happy" I say "he's happy now that I listen to him".

And I couldn't leave this without providing a resource that was given to me by a friend. This resource didn't offer criticisms, tell me I was a bad mom, or offer advice that worked for every baby but mine. 12 features of a high needs baby