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A Baby You Can Put Down!

A few months ago, I was chatting with a coworker friend who said she didn't understand why people couldn't take showers when they had newborns. She had a friend who had said this, and she just didn't understand why her friend couldn't make time to shower. She said that when she had her baby, she would put him down for a nap or put him in a swing or bouncy seat and take a shower. I decided to provide the other perspective and explained that we simply could. not. put. the Pumpkin. down. For the first three months of her life, she would scream bloody murder as soon as we tried to put her down or in a swing or in a bouncy seat (with the exception of nights, as long as she was swaddled, well fed, fast asleep and in the dark of night when put down, usually in the swing).

My friend then asked why not just ask the husbands to hold the baby so we could shower? I told her that is what I did, except after Londo went back to work. Then, the minute he walked through the door from work, I'd shove gently pass over the baby to him and just want to go sit by myself or lie down and rest. I would not have the energy to shower at that point in the day. And Londo left for work before we woke up, so there was no shower then. Oh, I used to HATE my mornings!

In the comments from Monday's post (to which I finally added my comment!), Paola said she was impressed that I was blogging. When the Pumpkin was an infant, there would have been no way I could have blogged--I could barely get a shower. But right now? I'm able to blog because the nanny is taking care of the Pumpkin and Pookie is asleep IN THE COSLEEPER! By himself! Not being held! Seriously!

Londo and I had heard rumors about babies that can be put down. Babies that sleep on their own. Babies that would lie there and look around contentedly. We heard these rumors for years! But we were sure we could believe those rumors... until now!

My Pookie boy is soooooo beautiful. He seems healthy and happy so far. He gets fussy when he's hungry, needs to be changed and has gas that won't come out (anyone have any tips of burping babies who don't easily burp?). But other than that? So far, he's pretty easy. And those thing that he fusses about? Those are the things that babies (and some adults) fuss about anyway!

Being able to put him down has opened up a whole new world for me and Londo. We are able to do things that we wouldn't have dreamed of attempting when the Pumpkin was an infant. Like putting the baby in a swing while I showered the other day! Or laying him down in the cosleeper while I wash up for bed most nights! Being able to do these things without holding a baby or without a baby screaming are sooooo helpful, because Londo is usually taking care of the Pumpkin while I'm doing these things. And because I'm healing from the c-section (major abdominal surgery, people!), I can't just go up and down the stairs any time I'd like or take care of the Pumpkin in the ways she needs or wants. So I'm really on baby duty, stuck upstairs and in bed as much as possible while I heal. (This was a huge part of the reason I was hoping for a VBAC.)

Now, I love every aspect of my little Pumpkin girl. I honestly would not change a thing about her, her personality or what we have gone through. She was a high-needs baby, especially hard in the areas of sleep, fidgety-ness, fussiness and not being put-down-able. But that is because she is FULL of energy, inquisitiveness, sensitivity and love. How can I not want her to be those things, even if it means we are still dealing with long bedtimes, middle of the night visits, constant vigilance while watching her and expended energy trying to keep up with her? It also means lots of cuddles, laughs and amazement at what a super genius she is.

It's very nice that our second child can be put down so we can have some relief. Granted he's only 10 days old, but signs look good so far. I'm sure he'll have his own difficult areas and quirks. I will love those aspects of him as well, I'm sure. But right now, we are just enjoying the time holding him... and not holding him!

Comments

paola said…
Everyone deserves at least ONE like that (yea, I got one too)!
Le Petit was another one of those un-put-downable babies. Since my husband doesn't have to leave for work too early, I always made sure to get a shower in before he left. Standing there under the hot water knowing I had fifteen whole minutes that no one could need me was often the very best part of my day in the first few months.

Honestly, I'd rather have a high-needs baby FIRST. I figure that if I have a second high-needs baby, at least I'll be prepared and if not, I'll be appreciative. Not that a second child won't have plenty to teach and challenge us no matter what (slow-learning parents that we are).

Glad you're getting a chance to rest and recover!
nutmeg96 said…
You deserve it. :)

Lexie started being able to chill out on her own about 4 weeks ago, and it made my life soooo much better. I always showered at night, but forget about brushing my teeth in the morning half the time.
nutmeg96 said…
BTW, Lexie is a tough burper. Some things that worked: tipping her to the left while burping (allows the bubble to rise out of the stomach, which goes to the left side); twisting her like the dance; doing a wide circle with her torso; sitting her up and down repeatedly (she hated that one). Once he can hold up his head, holding him facing outward over your forearm and walking around with him should get some good burps out.
Julie said…
That's how our #2 is also....our #1 was not like Pumpkin - we could put him down too....but he just seemed so tightly wound - from day one if things were not Just So.....and #2 is just so easy going and happy and flexible about stuff.

We talk all the time about whether WE created this aspect of #1 because he was first, new and unknown and with #2 we are much more relaxed...and to some extent I think that's true....but I also just sense a difference in personality between them. And yes, we sensed it right from the start, like you are sensing that from Pookie.
Jan said…
Tip for burping a baby:

"Sit" the baby on your knee (as if your knee were a chair, bottom on your knee, legs between your legs) leaning forward against your hand -- the baby's belly should be against your open hand. Then jiggle your knee up and down as if you were nervous. I never got huge burps this way, but lots and lots of little ones.

I'm glad you got an easier one. My second one not only allowed me ot put him down, but he shocked the hell out of me (later) by allowing me to put him down in that mythical "drowsy but still awake" state and then ACTUALLY FALLING ASLEEP on his own. It's been 3 years since that happened, and I'm still boggled by it. Magic.
Karen said…
I am so glad that you guys got an easy baby this go-round. You deserved it after darling Pumpkin. It's very nice, isn't it?
Susan said…
I know, I just got back from visiting friends who have a 6 month old baby whom they would regularly plop in a bouncy chair for like 45 whole minutes at a time with no fuss. I was all, "huh? I didn't know you could do that with babies," because my son (now 19 months) was up for about 10 minutes of the bouncy chair at a time, at best.
Congrats on getting one of those babies everyone hears about!
meggiemoo said…
I'm having the exact same experience with my 2nd child. My DS wouldn't sleep, wouldn't be put down, wouldn't go to anyone but me (and, grudgingly, my DH) for more than a year, hated the car, hated the stroller, hated the swing, hated the bouncy seat, hated the exersaucer. Did I mention that we were tired?

My DD, now 2-1/2 months old, will sleep in the swing (swaddled), goes down pretty well in the cosleeper if you rock her down first, happily goes to others, etc. Unfortunately, she still hates cars, strollers, bouncy seats. Thank god for the Bjorn/Ergo/Moby.
Carmen said…
This gives me hope for my second! I'm due in Oct and DREADING the newborn stage b/c my son cried for 4 months straight, nursed non-stop and I didn't really bathe regularly until I went back to work at 3 months and it was required:) My hubby would stand outside the bathroom door with a screaming baby while I took an incredibly relaxing shower (read with sarcasm).

Thanks for the words of hope! Maybe the first few months will be easier than I'm anticipating:)

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