Whoever came up with the phrase ‘I slept like a baby’ never had a baby. That person cannot have faced the onslaught of a collicky infant that won’t be put down or a baby that will only fall asleep to a delicate combination of black out blind, white noise and shushing. Oh the shushing.
But now I’m through the newborn trenches and wrangling a toddler, I’ve had time (3 minutes or so) to look back at what helped me through the dark times. The Stuff. The Stuff that helps make things a little less of an onslaught. (And apologies to anyone reading who is yet to procreate, I hope I’m not putting you off – many have a blissful time, just wasn’t our lucky roll of the dice.)
The first thing that helped was having a dedicated snack table. A table that was abundant with all my things – water, lip balm, chocolate, Netflix, phone, book that I’ll never in a million years get round to reading because my eyes hurt with tiredness. Having a safe space for your things stops the annoying hollers to your partner (or anyone in the vicinity) of ‘can you just get the…’
The second thing is definitely the Sleepyhead. I was sceptical at first because I went through a panicked stage of buying everything with ‘miracle’ in the title and needless to say no miracles were had. But the sleepyhead truly delivers. In many ways I’d look at her kipping in that snug nest (It took only three days before I was getting 4 hour stretches of slumber) and desperately want someone to make an adult-sized one for adults that don’t know if it’s night or day and happen to be wearing two pairs of pants for reasons that remain unclear.
While I (and noone else I believe) can truly help someone with a relentlessly mewling infant, there are small things that make a big difference in the first throes of keeping the infant relatively happy. These are my two. And don’t believe in ‘miracles’ at 3.03am – they rarely deliver.