Tuesday, August 25, 2009

My Own Baby Manual

I, like every other first time pregnant woman in America, spent hours pouring over the internet "researching" all of the things I would need to know about babies before mine got here. If I had only known then, what I know now. A.) No amount of internet research can prepare you for the real deal. B.) Those sites really don't tell you the super useful things, so I am going to start my own baby manual. Are you ready for lesson one?

Lesson One: The Sleep Radar

Now this appears to apply more for mommy than for daddy (at least in our house it does), so keep that in mind. Sleep Radar is an ability that all newborns possess. After you have rocked them, jiggled them, sang to them, stood on your head and fed a bottle to keep them happy, you are finally able to get them to sleep. Ah victory! You race to bed, dying to get under the covers and catch your 45-90 minute interval of sleep. You are so excited and a bit delirious from the sleep deprivation. Now at this juncture the baby can do one of three things. One of which I personally think is cruler than the others, but I will let you be the judge.

Baby Sleep Radar Option A: They act like they are dead asleep and then once you lay them in their bed they behave as if you are laying them on a bed of nails and you immediately have to scoop them up. Babies that do this are obviously very intuitive or have ESP because they read your mind that you were planning on going to bed and started screaming before you even made it to your bedroom.

Baby Sleep Radar Option B: They let you lay them down and they appear to be sleeping soundly. You say a quick thank you prayer to God and then you race to bed because you know the clock on your 45 minutes has already started. You make it to the bedroom, victory is in sight. You jump into bed and get yourself comfortable...and then the wailing begins. Now I personally think these first two options are a more humane way for the baby's sleep radar to operate. They at least don't trick you into believing that you would actually get some rest.

Baby Sleep Radar Option C: This is the cruelst of all sleep radar behaviors. You get baby laid down. you admire them sleeping like an angel and think how lucky and blessed you are to have them. You go into your room and lay down. Ah sweet relief, you are finally going to get some sleep. WRONG!!! This baby sleep radar behavior is not a sophisticated as the other two and it takes them approximately 20-30 minutes to catch on to the fact that you have just fallen asleep. No worries! To make up for lost time, they scream extra loud so you can't "pretend" like you don't hear them on the monitor and lay in bed for a few moments hoping that they will magically settle themselves back down.

So moral of the story...babies have a sixth sense when it comes to determining whether you have just laid down to rest and picking that exact momemt to decide they MUST be picked up that instant.

Stephen and I are lucky because we have a pretty good sleeper. We have the NICU to thank for that. This morning I was able to blow dry my hair about five feet from him and he didn't even flinch; however, I will say he does have a pretty good sleep radar. Stephen and I have devised a good system for sleeping. now mind you, it doesn't leave much time for romance, but who am I kidding...like I would have the energy for that! :) Plus lord knows I don't want Irish twins. I am still recovering from the trauma of this birth experience. But I digress. I go to bed at 9 o'clock every night. Stephen stays up with him and feeds him his 11 or 11:30 bottle and then comes to bed. I am then in charge from approximately 1 am or so on. Typically Perron will sleep until between 2:30 and 3 am so I am able to sleep from 9 until them. The bitch of it all is that even if Perron decides to sleep later, I still have to force myself out of bed to pump before he wakes up. YUCK! Pumping SUCKS! Anyhoo, it has proven to be a system that works for us and it is amazing what 4 solid hours of sleep can do for you!

The next lesson will be on Diaper Changing. As a prelude...if I was having to sit in my own pee or poop I would be kissing the feet of the person who helped me out of that situation...not screaming bloody murder like I was being tortured.


  1. Omg, that is the funniest thing I've ever read!!!! You should write a book, Julia. =) Sleep deprivation is very good for your creative writing, LOL!!!

  2. I hear you on the sleep radar - I used to swear that Austin could hear my sigh of relief as I got settled in the bed and drifted off to sleep and that would wake him up!

  3. Love it Julia!! I also want to tell you 2 special words-> MIRACLE BLANKET! There are very few things I swear by... but this is one of them! Check it out at miracleblanket.com. You can't get it in stores. Take all other swaddlers back! I (and several of my peeps)swear by it! Love you!

  4. Hi goulia! You SHOULD write a instructional manual/memoir all about perron! I just read adventures in poop out loud to taylor--to have him get up off the couch and move to the other room as I sat giggling uncontrollably about projectile poop.