Jude’s favorite thing in the world is to be swaddled and nursing while listening to white noise playing in the background. He’s less colicky now than he used to be, but this technique has become a frequently-used method to soothe him when nothing else does.
Sometimes, though, nothing works – nothing at all. Usually, this involves him furiously screaming and flailing with more vigor than anticipated for his seemingly tiny frame, and then for no reason at all, it will be over and he’ll be quiet…calm…peaceful. Truthfully, sometimes I wonder if he’s really just super ticked at us for not figuring him out but figures he’d be better off using his energies to plot his revenge than cry, but there’s a chance I’m ascribing too much processing ability to my 4-month old.
I’ve learned in life that things often get worse before they get better, and Jude’s colic has reminded me of this. I was so eager to be done with his difficult pregnancy and adjust to being a family of 5. Instead, I’ve been in a new level of survival mode these past four months. I don’t say this bitterly or with regret; I wish this had all been easier, but the fact is it hasn’t been, but we’re doing it anyway, and it won’t be like this forever. I don’t want to wish away the good with the bad.
Sometimes things get better through circumstantial changes. Other times, things get better because we get stronger, better, and more skilled. Now that I’m starting to see some light in the tunnel of his crying (did I mentioned he laughed for me today? ah!), I can also see myself a little more clearly, and I’m proud of what I see. I haven’t gone crazy. I haven’t lost complete control. I’ve gotten better at letting go. I’ve started to become more efficient and productive with the little time I have. I am stronger, better, and more skilled as a mother and a homemaker than I was when I started this whole gig 9.5 years ago.
Writing is important to me, and I’ve been noticing lately that my time for writing has been slipping away from me. Worse, I’ve found my enthusiasm has ebbed, also. When I finally find myself alone with some quiet and free time, sometimes it’s all I can do to hold an entire coherent thought in my head, let alone put a string of them together and write them down. Tahd’s away right now, and while we talked tonight, I was lamented the fact that it’s just not working for me right now. It seems like I’m losing myself – to busyness and commuting and colic and toddler tantrums and single-parenting.
I hung up with him intent on writing something, but with no inspiration forthcoming I combed my draft archives until I stumbled onto the beginnings of a few general words in this post box – colic, things getting worse before they get better, the seeds that formed the first few sentences of this post. The longer I’ve sat with these thoughts, the more I’m reminded that even though it feels like it’s getting worse, it can and will get better. Either my circumstances will change or I’ll adapt and grow and strengthen in such a way that I can flourish even when it’s difficult.
Now…please pardon me while I go rescue my crying baby. It’s 10:57 PM and he’s already been up twice.
Here’s to less colic and more writing…someday!