Hush little baby don't you cry...
There is something uniquely satisfying about keeping watch over my family as they sleep. Felicia is finally getting some badly needed rest and Micah is sated for the moment and quiet in his crib. David Letterman is winding down, the dishes are drying in the rack and I have only one load of laundry remaining before the chores are done and the house is in order.
It is so good to have my family back home again even though it seems like a whole new world with all of these baby-fangled things like infant car seats, baby monitors, diaper bins and changing tables. It appears that having a child brings more baggage along with it than a multiple divorcee. We’ve got a million of something called a receiving blanket. I don’t know why they don’t call them swaddling cloths. Isn’t that what everyone does with them-swaddle up the baby and put him down for sleeping?
Swaddling is an art form. If you do it correctly the baby can’t be freed by anything short of a ninja or a direct nuclear hit. Do it wrong and he’s flailing around like a teenager at a Rave in five seconds with the receiving blanket wrapped around his tiny feet. If you want a baby to sleep you learn to swaddle as quickly as humanly possible. Once Micah is swaddled you can bounce a quarter off his little blanket. Daddy Dirk don’t mess around; turn on the wave machine and he’s sleeping like a log for a good hour and a half.
How do women manage to breastfeed for at least a year? Right now Micah is feeding every two hours and the toll it is taking on Felicia is undeniable. Rewards? Mothers-to-be let me warn you right now; you are nothing but milk sacs to your baby. They eat, fart, poop and pee and the only conscious thought they have is, “Feed Me!” The only pet name they have for you is, Food. They are little milk junkies and God help you if you keep them waiting even a millisecond. Half of the time they don’t even open their little eyes to look at you. It is all about the nipple to a baby-the rest of you is invisible to an infant.
Here is a tip for dads; never pick up a baby if you are not wearing a robe or a shirt. They strike like little cobras and if you are not careful you wind up looking like you were attacked by a giant squid. Their little jaw muscles are strong. Trust me on this and do not experiment. You will regret it.
One more piece of advice for the dads before it is my turn to get a little sleep. You need to learn the one word survival tool for fathers handed down from generation to generation of men.
Goodnight gentle souls...