Friday, June 10, 2011

ode on a growth spurt.

my baby grows horns, forgets how to sleep
and you wonder why mom is crumpled up in a heap
in the corner, hitting google like mad
to figure out why the child's naps are so bad.

i ask it the question "is 9 weeks the start?"
(of a growth spurt of course--it's not on the chart.)
i find, inbetween the bottles and rocking,
that many other moms have come knocking

at dr. google's door for some wisdom and peace
when their baby, it seems, turned 180 degrees.
good natured and sweet? it's all out the door
when the growth spurts descend with power once more.

i try to remember--was six weeks like this?
the perplexing irony of day's crankiness
juxtaposed with new overnight powers
of going down hard and sleeping for hours?

i spend 48 hours wondering, spending each day
trying to keep the crab-faced tired monster at bay--
twenty minutes isn't enough, you know, to keep a baby
in smiles and giggles and object batting (maybe).

she needs more, and heaven knows there's a line
between powernapping, then waking up just fine,
and getting stuck in a perpetual cycle of doom
where you wake up because there's too much light in your room

or maybe because your purple binky fell out
or maybe because you don't like (at all) to miss out
on anything that could possibly happen
while you and your blanket are peacefully nappin'.

it's all a mystery until i start really thinking
about how many ounces you've really been drinking.
i write it all down--some call it crazy--
but sleep deprivation can make memory hazy.

and so, flipping back, i begin to recall
that this growth spurty monster has come to call
at six weeks, at three weeks, at ten days perhaps;
and so i feel better about your days with no naps.

we're fighting it, maggie, with hugs and with kisses
with trying to be patient, with hits and with misses,
with making the most of the time that we've got.
(work does get done, but the dishes do not.)

and that's part of life with a wee little child
whose normal sweet nature, smiley and mild,
is sometimes replaced by a new kind of creature.
it eats! it fusses! (those are its advertised features.)

and nobody tells you that you'll occasionally wonder
if the cute little baby, whose spell you've been under,
will ever return.  she will. i remember, since flipping those pages;
this is another one of those sucky newborn stages.

growth spurts are evil, though they accomplish much good.
i marvel at my baby, but i'll admit that i would
in a heartbeat find some other way to grow--
one that doesn't make mom crazy. although,

if i knew what was best, i would be in control,
with fists full of knowledge, but that's not the goal.
as much as maggie's growing, i'm growing too
and learning with patience things that are true.

babies are wonderful, trying, and changing.
moms are inspired, flawed, and amazing.
dads are solid, impervious and at peace.
growth spurts make love and trust increase.

we're fighting the cat naps, we're feeding the girl,
we're giving every solution we hear a good whirl;
it's just a matter of time--i'll take that truth off the shelf
when we hit this again on the mighty week twelve.

No comments:

Post a Comment