self soothing

Pacifier Hunt Triggers Land Shark Feeding Frenzy

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Imagine what I could accomplish with a few teeth!

Just when you thought it was safe to go near the crib! My wife and I witnessed a series of sinister and terrifying shark attacks this morning on the baby monitor.

We’ve all heard about the chupacabra capture in Texas or the numerous Sasquatch sightings through out the years, but no has ever seen what a crazed land shark is actually capable of once they misplace their pacifier.

As many have you might have noticed, when the land shark is at rest, she takes on the shape of my gorgeous 7-month-old baby girl named Maddie. Those striking eyes and dazzling smile can lull almost anyone into a complete state of euphoria and relaxation.

But when she wants that pacifier and it skitters away – it’s like chum in the water for a bloodthirsty shark. There we were, two doting parents watching our bundle of joy on the baby monitor when Maddie fumbled her pacifier and it slipped out of her reach.

That’s when the transformation began and you could see a dorsal fin rising up from the crib. Perhaps that is a bit of embellishment, but the following remarks include no over-dramatization (not too much anyway).

Maddie wanted that pacifier back and was willing to fight for it. She actually spun and lunged face first for her fleeing pacifier. My wife and I gasped at the spectacle of it all.

When the land shark came up empty, she made another blind face-first-lunge for the elusive prey. This time she face-planted into the mattress, but continued thrashing about in hopes of scaring the pesky thing back to the surface. Sadly her vast efforts did not produce the results she was looking for and the pacifier remained hidden behind her shoulder.

After the heartbreak of a second failed strike, Maddie decided to feed on her feet instead. This was a good plan except for the fact that the pj’s she was wearing had footies on the bottom. The poor land shark finally decided that it would just be easier to order room service.

She let out a few angry hoots to summon the servants that is was time for them to come and pick her up. Later that morning, when Maddie was messing around with her strained prunes and raisins, she took comfort in the knowledge that her next paralyzing strike would come without warning.

Baby Grapples With Sore Gums

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I think I'll pass on this teething thing

After a vaccination-fueled weekend of interrupted sleep, it’s been our pleasure to welcome in Maddie’s sore gums. That’s right, out with the shots and in with the teeth.

Maddie’s gums are giving her the dickens and she is letting everybody know about it. This morning’s early morning nap was almost over before it began, lasting only 30 minutes. This pretty much set the tone for the rest of the day.

Maddie was out of sorts and only could only be soothed in short stints. Even one of our short walks (usually a Maddie favorite) only seemed to make matters worse.

The baby has started drooling like a rabid wolf now and is looking for relief in all the wrong places. She wants to chew anything and everything, but nothing we have tried seems to provide any relief.

From what I understand, we had better get settled in because the teething process is only going to get more difficult. The telltale sign that things were really changing was at dinnertime.

In recent weeks, the solid food dinner has really become a fan favorite. This is the meal Maddie really looks forward to. So after the baby endured such a difficult day, I made it a point to pick out some sweet potatoes, one of Maddie’s favorites.

I got her all prepped and spooned out some of that orange goodness only to be stopped at the gate. I couldn’t even get her to execute her favorite trick – the spoon grab! Maddie just wasn’t interested. I tried all the food tricks, the ones that help her to eat the non-favorites, but her heart just wasn’t into it.

We have all been blessed because Maddie feels so good and happy so often. But these gum issues have left her in a rather contemplative state. She realizes something is different and uncomfortable, but is still trying to piece together the origin of the problem.

After dinner, Maddie was far from enthusiastic with prospect of being put to bed. Even though several attempts ended badly, we are hopeful that the baby is able to work out some of these issues and get some much needed rest.

If anyone has any great advice or guidance for helping Maddie get through these tough times, we are all ears!

Maddie Gets Serious About Sleeping

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Do Not Disturb

A little less than two weeks ago, Maddie and her parents were going toe to toe on the sleep issue. Way back then, Maddie considered naps to be up there with crimes against humanity. All attempts to put the cherub down for a nap were met with great vengeance and furious anger. Most of the time, either one of us could be treated to some crying or screaming during these unjust periods.

What a difference a week makes. Gina figured out that Maddie was on about a 3-hour sleep cycle and so we have been trying to put Maddie to sleep before the 180-minute countdown expires. It was hard at first, but naptime seems to finding itself into our daily culture. Maddie loves to change things up of course, but for now, the bear within baby is content to bulk up on some hibernation like slumber.

Maddie has really initiated the change as she consistently improves upon her own ability to soothe herself. This has been nothing short of impressive to her parents who observe her every sleeping moment on the video monitor.

There was a time when Maddie’s arms were public enemy number one when it came to her trying to get some sleep. They would flail around during her attempts at sleep which would often shock her awake. Now, the baby is using both of her hands to soothe herself. She mimics the motions of a person who is drying their hands under one of those sanitary fast food hand driers. It’s not a quick process, but she is getting a little better at it with each sleep attempt.

What’s also fascinating is that we have been told multiple sources that sleep begets sleep – the more you get during the day, the better you sleep at night. For the time being, this is also working out in our favor.

The baby’s increased sleep also seems to be taking the edge off of those funny little pre-nap tantrums Maddie was so fond of throwing. But there is one lesson we are reminded of time and time again – every time we learn something new about parenting – at least nine unanswered questions take its place.