Some of my best ideas have come from other people. Yeah, I just admitted to that. One of my friends on Twitter, @busylittlebaby, has children roughly the same age as C and Baby Jo. When I saw that she was doing a joint bath I was like, “HEEELLOO!!” Clearly I’d been making my life more difficult than it needed to be! And thus, the joint bath began. Don’t worry, we’ll discontinue this when they’re 13 and 15.
When C had colic during his first eight weeks, Hubster and I were desperate to find anything that would help him. Hubster had heard about the BABYBJÖRN BabySitter Balance from a supervisor. We balked at the price, but we were sold after Hubster conducted further research on the product.
The natural rocking motion helps develop a child’s motor skills and balance, since the baby is in complete control of the seat’s movements. There isn’t a mechanism to make the seat move. When C was very young, we could use our foot to bounce the seat. By about 2.5 months of age, C recognized that he was in charge of making the seat bounce. Even now, at 7 months of age, he loves his seat. He swings his legs up as high as he can and quickly brings them down. It’s pretty hilarious to watch him bouncing and laughing.
There are three positions to the seat: play, rest and sleep. The weight maximum is 29 pounds for play, 22 pounds for rest and 15 pounds for sleep. I love that the weight maximum is that high so we can get a lot of use out of the seat.
Another thing I love is that the fabric comes completely off in one piece and is machine washable. It’s been so easy to clean spit-up or general baby slobber.
We’ve also been able to bring this along with us when we visit family, because it folds almost flat for easy travel or storage.
Even though the price is a bit steep, we’ve found that the BABYBJÖRN BabySitter Balance is worth the investment. It’s a quality product that has grown with C, and I know that he will continue to enjoy it for many more months. I love that it is so compact when folded down. It’s so easy to use and clean. I recommend it!
*Baby Bjorn did not compensate me for this review.*
Today, C is only happy while being held in a standing-up position. You’d think he’d be happy standing in his exersaucer. Nope. You’d think he’d be happy playing in his gym (his absolute favorite toy). Nope. Is he hungry? No, recently ate. Does he need a diaper change? No, recently pooped. Is he tired? No, he just took a two hour nap while being held because he would NOT stop crying in his pack n play.
Meanwhile, I’m trying to take care of the overflowing basket of dirty laundry, the ominous stack of dirty pots and pans, and the fact that I must get some work done today.
Every time I tried to put C down so that I could get something – anything! – done, he started to cry. Ya can’t even reason with this kid! :-p So then I started crying.
There we sat, looking at each other in despair, tears rolling down our cheeks. That’s when I knew I had to text Hubster with a plea for help.
Thankfully, C is now running errands with Hubster. I need to pop some ibuprofen, turn on some trashy television, put my feet up, get some work done on my laptop and eat a few Oreos with absolutely no regard to how it’s messing with my Weight Watchers points.
Ever since C’s colic started, I’ve been following The Fussy Baby Site‘s blog. Today, they posted a list of the Top Websites for Colic. I visited the Ask Dr. Sears website that was listed and stumbled upon information on high needs babies. I had an “aha” moment – FINALLY, C’s personality is explained.
I knew he was a strong-willed and determined baby, but I’ve been spending a lot of time scouring parenting books to figure out how to conform him to a schedule – especially for his naps. He refuses to nap more than 20 minutes at a time. Even getting him to do that is a struggle that typically involves screaming on his part. Now I understand that it’s not something that I’m doing wrong, and it’s not something that he’s likely to grow out of. It’s just his personality. And he’s not alone – there are many other high needs babies. Their parents also feel exasperated and at a loss for what to do, since their baby’s personality is unlike that of others they know. High needs babies even tend to make their feelings known in the womb by being extremely active. I feel validated!
According to Dr. Sears, whose forth child had this personality, there are 12 features of a high needs baby. C exhibits many of these features:
Intense. Whenever C wants something, he starts screaming. He goes from “0 to 60″ in the blink of an eye.
Draining. After an entire day of needing to actively entertain him and fighting to get him to nap, I am completely drained. It’s exhausting.
Demanding. He needs to be held a lot, entertained, switch positions often while feeding, etc. When he’s not getting what he wants, he screams.
Unsatisfied. He’s only content doing something for a short amount of time. I constantly need to switch things up for him, whether that’s moving him from gym to bouncer to floor to swing or parading toy after toy in front of him to keep him entertained.
Unpredictable. I’ve tracked C’s feeding and sleep schedule since he was born. There has NEVER been a pattern to it. I think we’ll always be an “on-demand” household, because that’s the only thing that seems to work for him.
Super sensitive. Whenever something is the least bit wrong in his world, he starts to cry. In one respect, this is good because he lets us know he needs something. When it happens frequently, it becomes a bit frustrating.
Can’t put baby down. Sometimes he just cries and screams no matter what we do unless he is held. If we sit down, he cries because he wants to be rocked or walked around with. He has a need to see everything that is happening around him, which I believe is another reason that he doesn’t want to nap.
Not a self-soother. Some children can soothe themselves with their thumbs, fists or a pacifier. Not C – his cries will continue to become louder and more frantic until you attend to his needs. It’s best to get to him quickly before it escalates.
It’s challenging to be a parent of a high needs baby, because your baby doesn’t accept common methods (i.e. crying it out or other sleep training). Because you see other babies who are easily calmed or content, you sometimes question your ability as a parent. I’m so thankful to The Fussy Baby Site for posting this information! C is not just a difficult child, and I am not doing something wrong as a parent. This is simply C’s personality and I need to learn how to conform to HIS needs. While it may be hard at times to raise a high needs child, if Hubster and I learn how to positively direct his passion and intensity, these traits will serve him well in life. I just need to remind myself that when I feel like I’m going insane!
*Special thanks to my parents; I, too, was a spirited high needs child. Their patience with me and encouragement of all of my energy has served me well. I hope that I will be able to do the same for C.*