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Saturday, January 17, 2015

How to calm a hysterical newborn in the middle of the night

It's daunting.  You're bone tired and they rage on, tiny body stretching and twisting as they try to get gas out.  Tiny nails, too small to clip still find a way to scratch at whatever exposed flesh they can find and your only job is to stay awake and soothe this raging baby.

My husband stays up the first half of the night so I can sleep uninterrupted with the exception of nursing every 2-3 hours.  I take over at 3am and on a good night I can get her back to sleep and snooze until 6am.  On a bad night, like tonight, I have to wake up and figure out how to get this tiny ball of frustration to relax and sleep.  Nursing her at 3 helped get her to sleep until 4 but I think she was tired from crying for 2 hours with husband.  

At 4am I gathered my supplies (iPhone, Kindle, water and pacifier) and headed out to the living room.  Lights on, I'm not even going to pretend this will be fast and easy.  She blinks in the bright light as I present the pacifier.  Yes, no, maybe, definitely NO she says with a long howl!  I turn on the kindle and play Jewel's lullabies and she slowly calms down and accepts the paci.  We pass the next hour going through Casting Crowns songs and as I sing to her and pray, she finally calms down and sleeps.  

I'm sure it's the first of many night cries; babies cry when they are uncomfortable and it's our job as parents to help them chill out.  I find if I'm calm and relaxed it helps her.  If I'm upset and frustrated then she feels that.  The most important thing for me is getting that first shift of sleep.  I know I can take a nap later, so I just need to get through 3am - 7am!  

She's been asleep for 24 minutes and its 5:25am, I guess I'll try putting her down and getting a nap until 6 or 7. 

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