Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Consistently persistent

It's been a tough few days for Zephyr (and me). The rough patches on his legs, arms and abdomen (that I'd heretofore been blithely treating with Burt's Bees after baths) is eczema. This isn't much of a surprise and I know it's pretty common, but something - possibly allergies inherited from Scott, or the recent addition of OxyClean to the laundry regimen - has triggered the rash to become so itchy that Zeph has begun scratching himself raw. We had to make a late-night call to the pediatrician's triage desk the other night because, after nearly three hours of trying to get him to sleep, he began sobbing inconsolably and was starting to break the skin with his scratching. Now he's on hydrocortisone and is wearing sock mitts to prevent scratching, but coupled with teething and a lack of good sleep, he's been kind of a Fussy McCrabberson. I just really hope he doesn't end up with allergies and asthma (the other two legs of the Nerd Trifecta).

At some point, I guess I can stop talking and thinking and fretting about sleep. There has to be more to parenting an infant than worrying about sleep, right? He used to be so good, even a week ago, at the onset of transitioning him out of our bed. Now? I'm lucky to get four hours. I usually get two (particularly if I succeed in getting him to bed at 9:00, in which case his first "long" stretch is overlapped by me and Scott trying desperately to relate to each other as friends and partners). Last night he never slept more than two hours at a stretch. He slept better as a newborn than he does as a "settled" infant, when he's supposed to be finally sleeping through the night. The main difference between my energy levels now versus when he was brand new is that now he weighs 20 pounds and it physically exhausts me just doing day-to-day tasks like diaper changing and lugging him from room to room.

I think I'm most frustrated by his inconsistency, when I'm working so hard to be persistent with his routines. I don't really know how to bounce back when he, say, naps for only 30 minutes instead of a couple hours. Am I supposed to try to get him right back down? And how long do I keep trying if I don't succeed? I usually give up after about an hour or two, and then try again in two hours. Sometimes he cues that he's sleepy right away, and then wakes up right after going down again. Repeat ad nauseum. What I'm most sick of, though, is talking about his fucking sleep problems.


Hey, though, on the plus side, I found some new camera apps for my iPhone, and have been thoroughly enjoying photographing Zephyr (as any of my Facebook friends can attest). One more way to obsess over this kid. Just what I need.



6 comments:

  1. Last picture: "Fuck a bunch of sleep" ~ Zeph

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  2. I said it before, but holy cow, your baby is delish.

    Hope the sleep gets better. I am MEAN to the SO if he interrupts my sleep and I get more than four hours a night.

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  3. For me that was the most frustrating part of having a baby...the sleep dilemma. I too struggled with the lack of consistency. It drove me crazy! But hang in there, it will get better. He sure is adorable though!

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  4. That last photo is ridic. Ahhhhh the sleep. Every time I get a glimmer of hope things like constipation or the two top teeth throw a wrench in it. I guess I am saying I can relate. That 90 minute sleep book (they have it at the library) was the only one of all the ones I read that really worked for me.

    Thought about you often today. We will bike over to see you again when we get back.

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  5. Such cute pictures! Poor little scratchy man. If it is any consolation, I had terrible excema as a child and teenager, but I have grown out of it!

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Yay! Thanks for saying nice stuff about my baby.