Thursday, July 12, 2007

Shaking Babies

I take it back. If I ever said that Frances was a good baby, an easy baby, I was wrong. So deeply, horribly wrong. Frances screams. Constantly, loudly, miserably, no matter what I do. She screams and screams and screams. I can't eat, I can't play with Mary, I can't go out, because by baby screams inconsolably. She eats a tonne, and then eats more, and then eats. Sometimes she will act like she is starving, but when I try to feed her she sputters and screams and chokes. Her soother calms her down sometimes, but she spits it out and then gets filled with rage. I feel like duct taping it onto her face. I feel like doing a whole lot of things that I shouldn't, like shaking her till she shuts up (I won't, you don't need to worry, when I start feeling out of control I just go to another room).

You may be saying, "Jennifer, if she screams all the time, how is it that you are able to blog?" Well, I'll tell you. Frances has been screaming since 9 this morning, it's just about noon now. She finally fell asleep about 5 minutes ago. She drank 9 oz of breast milk, spit up about 4 of those ounces, screamed while I rocked her, screamed around her soother, screamed in her swing, screamed while I finally fed Mary her breakfast, screamed while I finally ate my breakfast, screamed while I took a quick shower, screamed while I cried, screamed while I changed her diaper, screamed in her bassinet, screamed in her swing, screamed in her bouncy chair....It was much the same last night from 6 till about 11. She screamed no matter what we did. Once she fell asleep, she slept for 6 hours, but oh my god, did we pay for those uninterrupted hours of sleep and the only way to get her to sleep was to bring her to bed with us.

It's frustrating for me when Ian comes home too. I deal with the screaming misery for 11 hours while he is at work, and I manage to keep my temper most of the time. Ian comes home, and within an hour of the screaming he's furious and throwing things and swearing. I know it's hard to deal with, good Christ I know it's hard, but it'd be nice to be able to get a break for an hour or two without worrying about him too.

I feel the worst for Mary. She is such a sweet girl, and so patient. All of a sudden I can't give her the love and attention she's used too, and she deals with it so well. She has the occasional moment of tears, but she's mostly happy and sweet, and she loves Frances. She gets upset when the baby cries, and is always giving her hugs and kisses. I feel bad that she's trapped in this apartment with Frances and me, but I can't take them out by myself. Frances screams and I'm unwilling to subject the general public to that horrible noise while Mary is charging around like an uncaged monkey. I just can't control Mary and deal with Frances at the same time. I feel bad for Frances too. I really can't stand her most of the time, and I hope that will change some time. I hate feeling this way about my baby, it feels so wrong. I should love her unconditionally, right? But all I want to do is get away from her, to get a break, to give her back, to take back that moment 10 months ago that I got pregnant. I want things to go back to the way they used to be, when it was just the three of us, and we were happy.

And with that, sleeping time ends, and the screaming begins.


James said...

When babies scream uncontrollably, unconditional love means not throwing it in the garbage.

Just ask Raven.

JSM said...

Colic, oh joy.

You're a good mother, don't let hours of consecutive crying have you think otherwise. It's brutal. Oh God, just the memory of it. Brrr. Brrr again. I seem to remember standing over him screaming "SHUT UP" at the top of my lungs. Didn't work. Proud parenting moment though.

Have you explored all the reflux/allergy/gas possibilities?

Vivian said...


I can't find your phone number. Could you send it via email please,

Or better yet call me so I don't set off the screaming :)


Shani said...

I always thought that bouncing them down a flight of stairs worked well, they stopped crying at least.

Kidding aside, you're a wonderful mom Jenn, as jsm said, and you have the patience of a Saint.

I miss you, and will talk to my beau about arranging a visit sometime soon, and part of that visit will include kicking you out of the house, with or without (or hey, what a novelty, doing both!) Miss Mary.

you must harrass him from your end as well..

oh wait, he'll prolly see this..

Eman, we need to go visit Jenn and Ian!