I only know how to make babies



Don’t let this face fool you. He is a tiger, a gassy tiger. His scientific name is Panthera tigris colickyandwhatareyougoingtodoaboutit.

Every night this week, between 5 and 8 PM, he enters into a Henry Rollins rage, fussing until he’s red faced, temple throbbing, body jerking. I offer him my right boob (Miss Universe) and then the left one (Miss International) and then I offer myself some tequila because DEAR GOD ANYTHING WE ARE BOTH CRYING.

When I first had Nathan, I heard stories about colic, babies who were difficult or impossible to soothe. I nodded in sympathy and was so glad that Nathan was not a colicky child. He cried when he wanted to eat, sleep and be changed. Easy enough. But TJ needs work! Who knew this about babies? That they are not just beings that automatically know how to play Mario Kart and leave mommy alone!

Everything is an experiment and with a colicky child, I experiment with everything. Here is what I have tried:

Gripe water. This has eliminated most of the hiccups and Exorcist style spit-ups but the crying has persisted.

The swing and bouncy chair. Works only when he is just falling asleep. When he does sleep in it, it’s bliss. When he’s awake, I only have a few moments to wolf down breakfast before I have to pick him up again.

The pacifier. I tried to offer him a pacifier to give my boobs a rest. He was almost asleep, then woke up furious, his face saying, “This is some bull crap right here. Bulllllllll. Crap.”

Watching Oprah instead of Judge Judy because Grandma thinks Judge Judy is NOT NICE. This hasn’t worked either.

So to further experiment with my son’s gas, also known as ways to keep me from jumping off the balcony, I stopped eating dairy this week. This baby’s Precious Moments stomach cannot pick up what I’m putting down in this breastmilk, so I am doing this for his health. And my sanity. The problem with a sudden cold turkey dairy strike like this is that everything in my house has some form of dairy in it. Then at the grocery store, I walk through aisles that are now verboten, a constant under the breath muttering of, “Cheesecake! Mud pies! Ice cream! CHEEESE!” then I fall to my knees, my fists angrily punching the air above and the only sound muffling the clerk requesting more help at checkout is my screaming, “WHY MEEEE!!??!”

Also making it difficult: my mother has taken up this plight as her plight. The woman is all about plights! Now that I can’t eat dairy, she makes it very public that she cannot eat dairy as well! We had salad at the mall and she was *offended* that the lady at the counter didn’t let her know that oil and vinegar was a dressing option because she had already poured a bit of the Italian on her salad. Which was creamy! Which she could not have! Because she cannot eat dairy!

The one experiment that has worked is the rainstorm app on my iPhone (Bless you Apple!). The sound of the rain, the rolling beats, the tap-tap-taps–have worked wonders on this savage beastbaby. Right now he has slept for two hours and I deem this experiment a success. These are the moments I need, the moments of silence after a day of constant wear and weariness that remind me that despite all this, we are still moving upward and forward.



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  1. Awww….Mona Chan I heart you! I wish I were there to tag you out for a bit and play with new baby. Hang in there! You’re a strong, beautiful, and wonderful mother! I miss you!

  2. wow, I feel for you. Keep Calm and Carry On.

  3. I had to give up dairy for V and it was SO hard! Good luck!

    As for apps- I also love the Baby Calm app. It has tons of different noises and a baby mobile and this fun light feature that babies love..

    Hope you get some more rest soon!

  4. Two of my kids were like that, and when they were crying, I would hallucinate that the ice cream truck singing it’s cheerful little tune was really a rolling, 24-hour vasectomy truck. It was all I could do not to run after it with a fist full of change and demands for service.

    My kids were diagnosed with acid reflux and put on meds. It didn’t make things awesome, but it got better enough that I didn’t take the toenail clippers to my husband’s vas deferens while he was sleeping.

  5. PS: I also gave up dairy and I lost hella weight. So even though it sucks, you will look awesome.

  6. Kristen says:

    My baby wasn’t colicky, but I did have to change her clothes like 6 times a day because of her reflux. We took her to the chiropractor, and after a couple of visits, we saw awesome improvement. I know a lot of people are weirded out about taking their kids to the chiro, but it was a really gentle process, and I hear that it does wonders on colic!

  7. I wish someone (aka THE DOCTOR) had suggested to me to try eliminating things from my diet when my daughter was a baby – a spitty, fussy, gassy baby – because not until she was a year old did we find out she was allergic to milk and egg whites. And that my breastmilk and I were basically the root of all our evils. No wonder that dern Zantac didn’t work. Duh.

    So good for you taking charge and making some changes. Even if you have to live without cheese for awhile. šŸ™‚

  8. OMG! Thank god I’m not having anymore kids. I’d lose my mind! And he looked so sweet when I saw him. Tricky guy.

  9. Awwwww Mona, he’s DARLING… gassy or not. And I promise you, the colic WILL pass. It’ll suck really bad until it does, but it will. ((((HUGS))))

  10. He is sooo precious! Until my daughter was about a year I had to restrict my diet. I couldn’t have chocolate, coffee, or artificial sweetner. It’s pure evil to make a new mommy go without coffee or chocolate! I used Mylicon gas drops if I was bad and had no-no foods. Once she hit 12 months she was all good. Now I can have a cup of coffee in the morning without fear that my next few hours will be spent listening to her scream. Good luck!

  11. LOVE the pics. My little pie had colic too. Terrible, terrible colic. I thought for sure I would have a complete break from sanity and end up in IHOP with a robe and bunny slippers on demanding a refund because the french toast was mocking me. There are colic pillows as well, but Pie used hers once and then refused to be near it after that. Really nothing settled her other than pacing with her in a football hold, face down. Poor lovie.

  12. Oh sweet jeebus I feel your pain!!
    My son, my firstborn, was an angel. The perfect child. I would shove him into people’s faces and demand that they worship this perfect child that was mine! But then I had my daughter…first, she had a bit of jaundice. Then she lost weight in the hospital and had to have formula supplemented with my breastmilk. Then came the colic. You could set your watch to her screams. 10 pm, every night. Her upchuck rivaled LInda Blair in Exorcist…But I just had to power through it. Because no one told me about gas drops, no one told me that what I was eating could be pissing her off.

  13. Aww. His “squee” face is so cute!!

  14. It’s amazing how quickly we forget these stages. I read this and thought, “Oh, yes, I remember.” So, find a bit of solace in “this too will pass.” Until then, know that the only way that LB would calm down is if I had him in the sling and paced, back and forth, for hours. If I would stop? Or slow my roll? SCREAM! SCREAM! SCREAM! I feel you.

  15. I would actually fall asleep rocking my screaming daughter to sleep. She screamed for about 23 out of 24 hours, until I went on an elimination diet and we realized that the dairy was the culprit.

    I SO feel your pain. Or felt it, because that same child is now a 16 year old that just rolled out of bed at 10:45 a.m.

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