My first mistake was thinking I had mastered parenting from The Kid. My second, thinking said mastery had an extended warranty, not knowing it automatically expires with kid #2. Do the "parenting books" tell you this? Huh, maybe I should have picked one up because I certainly entered this "new" territory foolishly light-hearted, ill-prepared, and gullibly clueless.
Since day 1, I have been on the losing side of The Baby (see X-Mom vs The Baby). Just when I feel I have the upper-hand she shouts "Sorry!" and sends me back to Start with my tail between my legs. Okay, so she doesn't actually "say" anything (she's 9 months old), but I know it's what she's thinking.
Her nightly feeding and sleeping patterns have all but committed me. For 6 months, I did: dinner, bath, bedtime to only have her wake up (repeatedly) during the night. But, that's what usually works, right? Plenty of food, nice warm bath, massage with Johnson's Bedtime Lotion. Pfft! Johnson and Johnson has never met The Baby.
Then, for some fluky reason I switched dinner and bathtime. She slept through the night, but I didn't make the connection (probably because I still had a seat on the Loco Train) and went back to the same old-same old. Days, maybe weeks, later I switched again and tada! She slept through again. Yes, that's it!, I thought to myself while giggling hysterically.
I knew from experience that any little glitch would throw her off for days, sometimes weeks, and I wasn't taking the chance. The Sandman was back in my house and I be damned if he was getting back out. I was the Bedtime Keeper for 2 1/2 months, hovering over it and protecting it. The method was working; therefore, sacred. Any deviation from anyone or anything would cause X-Mom to surface and destroy.
Then, they came...
I'm back on Start while she's displaying 4 brand new teeth. While everyone's "awing" over her little choppers, I'm keeping one eye open. They're razor-sharp and don't travel alone. I know their friends are waiting to pounce and rip what's left of my sanity to shreds.
Hubs, referring to her "new" old routine, tells me, "She's just doing what a baby does." Hmph. I'm not sure "what a baby does," but I know The Baby is kicking my butt. Mommy is tired. I'm tired of not getting sleep, even though Hubs has taken over during the night I still wake up. But, more importantly, I'm tired of not being able to figure her out, I'm tired of feeling like I don't know what I'm doing. I'm tired of feeling anxious and stupid. I'm tired of being tired.
And please spare me the "well, every baby is different" line. Sleeping babies are not a myth, The Kid was one. I simply got in the wrong line.
Each new day I'm hopeful the night will let The Baby play a little longer in Dreamland. (Sheesh, can she get a Season Pass?) And as crazy, anxious, and unsure she makes me feel, one little snuggle from those cuddly little arms makes everything okay.
Eh, she can win for a little while longer.
*rolling my eyes* I must be in a padded room...