How to deal with a crying baby

The post below (written under the picture of my kids)…… was written about six months ago when I first started blogging.  All four of my children have a page dedicated to them…you can see above on the home page……Zach is A Rock Star….Andrew is Two Minutes to Midnight….Katie is Katie Borreato…and Gregory is G-isms

I was thinking more…just today…about the page I wrote for Zach.   What is written below is exactly what is written under his page….A Rock Star.  Today, though…..I was thinking about when a baby is first born….and the excitement that is felt by the mommy and daddy….the grandparents….and everyone in your little circle….especially for the first baby…only because the first baby….is the first baby.  It is the first time you experienced sharing the news that you are having a baby….the first time you had a baby belly….the first time you felt a baby move in your belly…the first time you felt the pains of labor…and the first time you held your baby in your arms.

But…nobody talks about the babies that cry all of the time…and how that changes a first time mother’s perspective about mother-hood…the story below describes how I felt during the first year of Zach’s life….and that without support I am not sure if I would have survived the challenges that were presented to me.  I remember thinking back then….I should bring him to the local high schools…and when they do the “take care of the egg for a week assignment“…..rather than that….have them take care of him…..because no-one really understands what it is like to take care of a baby that cries all of the time….it probably was one of the most difficult challenges of my life….(I dealt with having melanoma better than Zach crying for a year)….and that is really the truth.

What I learned is that I made sure that I found out what was wrong…his first pediatrician told me that I was a first time mom….and this is what I should expect….I kept asking questions…and explaining what was happening…how he was not really eating…or liking to eat….arching his back while eating…he would burp then scream…then not eat anymore….and he always acted like he was hungry…but when the bottle went in his mouth…he arched…and squirmed…and screamed…and cried…and cried and cried.

One day…I just decided to take him to the pediatric GI doctor…I did not care what the pediatrician was saying…I could not take it anymore…the screaming had to stop.  GI found out that he had severe gastroesophageal reflux disease…she said maybe some would call it colic…but colic does not tell you why a baby is crying…just that the baby is cranky……now we knew….and now we can make it better…thank God….

And do you know that I actually remember his first happy day….I was at my cousin’s baby shower…I went with my  mom….and at this point Zach had been on the medicine….a few of them…..for about a week or so…..and we got up that day….and he drank his bottle…and he was happy…..we drove in the car….and he was happy (prior to this he hated the car unless it was in constant motion…no stop signs….oh God please NO red lights…no traffic…..just keep moving….so sometimes Greg and I would drive on the Long Island Expressway…..driving……it was quiet…no crying….peaceful)…..but the day of my cousin’s shower….he did not mind the stop signs…or the red lights….or the traffic.  He sat on my lap at the shower….I did not have to remain standing….keeping him in constant motion to keep him happy…..he was just happy.  And I remember….someone there said to me…”Is this the baby that I heard cries all of the time?”……..yeah this is him…..

So what I learned….keep searching for the answer…even if your doctor tells you it is typical…babies should not cry incessantly…..all day long….something is wrong if so….

I needed my family….I needed the support…..thank God for them….so if friends and family ask to help you….say yes……

What I know now…..what I did not know then…..it was all WORTH IT…..

 

 

Our first son was born on April 2, 1997……he cried for the first year of his life.  Severe gastro-esophogeal-reflux-disease.  Not easy for a first time mama…not what I signed up for….and it was hard being a working mama….never getting any sleep….and constantly listening to crying….crying….crying….and more crying…it was incessant….And of course….no sleeping…for a year

Thank God..for my parents…my in-laws…and my youngest sister..Jen…who was in her first year of college I believe….but on every break….she would come to my house and help us.  I remember once Zach had a severe ear infection…and we were sleepless for days…..Jen stayed over one night…she was probably only 19 at the time….and she took care of Zach for the entire night….my husband and I slept in the comfort of our bed…finally getting a good night sleep. 

And thank God for my parents….they would take him every Saturday the first year of his life (and even into his second year).  He would spend Saturday night there.  I remember…..dropping him off…and unlike most mamas….I gave him to my mom…..and I ran….ran to my car….drove fast back home….ran into my house…to have quiet.  And when I dropped him at my moms…..I did not stay and give him hundreds of kisses and hugs….and I did not dread and worry as I left him in someone else’s care…..no I ran.  Thank God for them….they really did save me.

Back then I often wondered how single mamas with no support at all…how did they survive the constant crying…how did they do it all alone….with no-one to offer them respite….it amazed me when I would think of single mamas out there handling life, work, and a baby that cried all of the time. 

It took me a long time to enjoy being a mother….I hated all the mamas out there that had perfect babies…the ones that ate….slept…..smiled…ate….slept….smiled…and the babies that were just constantly happy.  It made me miserable to watch any baby show…ugh…how annoying and nauseating to hear those mamas talking about how great parenthood was.  I wanted the days back when it was just me and my husband…we slept the night…we went out to dinner and ate the entire meal together….we could go to a family party and not feel as if we were in a bubble taking care of a crying child…not even realizing what was going on around us….we enjoyed life….what had we done????

Now….in the present day….I often think….how blessed I am to have been given that crying baby…how lucky I was to have had those sleepless nights…how glad I was that we were blessed with the child that did not sleep for a year…….because Zach has turned out to be one of the most caring and loving souls I may know.  And if you ask my four siblings….my parents…my inlaws….and all of my family members….they would agree.  He cares about everyone…he does not have a mean bone anywhere in his body…and he does not understand how other people can be mean….. Zach cares about his young cousins……he takes the extra time to bend down on his knees to give his cousin Jolene a hug…because he knows how much she idolizes him…..he takes the time to find out and figure out why any one of his siblings is upset or crying.   And he is always there to cheer them on….whether it be the first time Gregory rode a two wheeler…..or a high level that Andrew just beat….or the great job his sister Katie did in her Baton competition.   And the best part of it all…is that it is genuine….it is real.   And for a teenager…who most of them are embarrassed just by breathing….he never forgets to give anyone a hug hello or goodbye.  His parents…grandparents…aunts…uncles….all of us.

So I think back to the year of 1997….when I felt like my world turned upside down….and I thank God that we were blessed with Zachary Stelling Marino…..our rockstar someday.

About Kim

My name is Kim Marino and I have been practicing as a licensed speech and language pathologist since 1993. I work on Long Island providing diagnostic evaluations and services to children from birth to age 21. My experience is vast and am proud to say that I work with children that may present with articulation and phonological concerns, oral motor feeding concerns, Down Syndrome feeding, cognitive rehabilitation, auditory processing delays, receptive language delays, cleft palate feeding and sound development and expressive language delays. Most importantly, I am the mother of four amazing children and am happily married to my childhood sweetheart. I feel blessed to have my four children and so lucky to share this journey in life with my husband. I always had it somewhere in my head that I wanted to develop a blog or a website of some sort so that I could provide families with an additional resource....so that parents could help their little ones become a better communicator. And as I was developing this blog....I realized that I also needed to share the stories about my life and my children....and the funny things along the way that help to keep me smiling. Whether you are a working mother or not...finding balance between home, children and life can be a challenge....I hope that my blog helps to bring a smile to your face..and also some tools to help you help your little or big one. I hope you enjoy! Kim
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