Mothering Forum banner
1 - 19 of 19 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,700 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 14 month old ds and I watch my brother's son Jackson (5 1/2 months) 50+ hours a week while they work. So, I have my hands full. Some days things go reasonably smoothly - although it is always a bit of a struggle as ds is very needy and Jackson is still so small.<br><br>
Today Jackson would not sleep all day long and was just screaming and screaming. My ds was never much of a screamer because I was able to always hold him and nurse him all the time and such. Jackon gets some of this from him Mama on the weekends and at night, but it is impossible for me to do it all. He wants to nurse to sleep, for exmaple, but it is not possible (he won't really do it with a bottle).<br><br>
So, in desperation, after 1 1/2 hours of mostly screaming , which woke ds up after only a 30 minute nap, I had two very cranky boys and I let jackson CIO in his crib for 25 minutes, but he still would not sleep!<br><br>
So, my question is : How do you get through the day? What do you do to keep your sanity? How do you juggle their needs? (and, god forbid, your own!)<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngtongue.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Stick Out Tongue">
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,596 Posts
Today, I wasn't sure I would make it! And mine are older than yours. It was funny though, the day turned toward slightly better when we were at the grocery store, both kids were freaking out on me, and just started to very quietly sing a lullabye. Both kids joined in, and we peacefully finished our shopping while walking through the store singing a lullabye. People probably thought we were off our rockers!<br><br>
Thats not to say I hit on a constructive "soothing idea" everytime things get stressfull.<br><br>
I can't imagine taking care of 2 babies all day every day!<br><br>
I personally wouldn't do CIO, and it doesn't sound like it helped your day very much. Sometimes the stress of trying so hard to make a baby sleep can be worse than just coping with a crank-pot.<br><br>
I was wondering through your whole thread though, does Jackson let you carry him in a sling? Might he let you? I can imagine that solving a lot of problems for you. I used a sling for my 2nd baby and he was able to nap in it against my chest while I accomplished other things (mainly, dealing with my other child.) I've also had good luck slinging other people's babies to help them sleep. Worth trying, if you haven't already.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,700 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Sometimes he will let me sling him - although not always. Sometimes he'll fall asleep that way, but often he will get really cranky and only sleep if I lay him in his stroller. It is weird for me because my ds lived in a sling. Today i would have done that but the sling was really wet from a walk in the rain and I don't have a dryer. Maybe if he wigs out again tomorow I will try the sling. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,157 Posts
Is the car an option?<br>
Sometimes, just being able to go for a drive will put both of mine, or at least one into a good sleep & I can read or relax once that happens.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
674 Posts
I feel sad for you and for the boys.<br><br>
I would tell your brother that it is not working out watching his son. Clearly the baby is not happy. It's not your fault, and out of respect for you and the baby you should tell your brother. The baby is not doing anything "wrong" at all. He's a tiny baby who needs his mother. Whatever their situation is I'm sure (hope anyhow) that they would ultimately put the needs of their son first as you would yours. In fact, telling them it's not working for you would be in your son's favor as well seeing as the situation is stressing all of you out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,700 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The car is not really an option. We do own one but my ds hates the car and we live in Brooklyn, so driving is always a calculated risk!<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngtongue.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Stick Out Tongue"><br><br>
I am not really looking for people to feel sorry for me or the boys. I ds has his mom home with him, he goes to the park and reads boooks and nurses to sleep, etc. Jackson has to be in day care because his mom has to work. Given that, he is in a very good situation being with me rather than someone else who doesn't love him like I do. She took 4 1/2 months maternity leave, but she needs to work.<br><br>
I was just looking for ideas (like the sling, or the car) which might help to make him happier when he is tired. He cries a lot with his parents as well, not just me, and has since birth. He would cry for hours as a newborn and it killed them. He is very happy when he is not tired, but he fights sleep and always has.<br><br>
Please don't feel sorry for us, we are very lucky. I am wondering how people with multiples juggle competing needs, deal with bad days, and help everything go more smoothly for everyone.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
73 Posts
Around the house sling-wearing is a must. We try to get outside as much as possible. That way my 2 year old can get out his energy by running around and the fresh air calms my ilttle one.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
152 Posts
I could have posted the same thing! On a normal day, I have my 4 month old, Thomas, and a 7 month old girl, Brooke, and about half of the time, I also have her 3 yr old sister, Natalie. Today I had all three kids for nine hours, and only managed about 45 minutes where all three were sleeping at the same time - but during that time, I ahd the girls clothes to wash, toys to sanitize, and lunch to eat! Brooke isn't a good sleepwe at all, so there are many crazy days. I have finally decided that it is just easier not to fight her on naps. I know she's tired, she knows she's tired, but I can't make her sleep. So, if she'll let me, I rock her and hum some lullabies. If she won't hear it, I put her in the jolly jumper and let her wear herself out some more before I try again. Thankfully, Thomas is a great sleeper (knock on wood!), and he will just let m elie him down to nap. The three yr old is wonderful,, but like all 3 yr olds, she isn't always as helpful as she thinks she's being <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngtongue.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Stick Out Tongue"> There are many times when I just pack up the kids (one a stroller, mine in the sling) and we go for a long walk around the neighborhood. In a couple of months, I will be able t otake them to the park, adn they will both be old enough to enjoy it. But that 30 minutes or so of fresh air helps all three of us calm down, and if nothing else, gets me far enough away from the stress that I feel better about going back to the house.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">am not really looking for people to feel sorry for me or the boys. I ds has his mom home with him, he goes to the park and reads boooks and nurses to sleep, etc. Jackson has to be in day care because his mom has to work. Given that, he is in a very good situation being with me rather than someone else who doesn't love him like I do. She took 4 1/2 months maternity leave, but she needs to work.</td>
</tr></table></div>
AMEN! I am constantly getting "Poor you! All those babies!" or "Poor babies, they don't have your full attention." Well, if not for this arrangement, both of these babies would be in full time day care with a group of 12 other infants. yeah, this is sooo much worse <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/rolleyes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="rolleyes">: Not all families can have someone stay home with the baby no matter how hard they try. I need the money that my income provides desperately, adn this other family needs me. It all works out very well, even if it is frustrating at times!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,134 Posts
I am not at all a gadget person but would a swing or a bouncing chair help? Does he have a blanket or item with that travels from home to your house? I know it is young but my daughter seems calmer when she can bring her "friends" with and she started this trend before 5 months. (I think it was the smell in all honesty) Can he sleep in the stoller in your house or while you push it? When my child does not sleep I just put my house in a calm state and weather through it, we have lots of light jazz, rain cd's lights on dimmers, etc.<br><br>
I know you have probably thought of and done everything! I make it through my day by playing music that relaxes me and by meditating every possible second. You sound like you are doing a fabulous job and I do not think that anyone has it under control every second no matter how much it would seem like it.<br><br>
I only have one child and I stay at home but I was a nanny for two children for a long time and your nephew is lucky to have family to watch him.<br><br>
lula
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,944 Posts
Ok- I only have 1, but could your ds watch a DVD or tape? I have found now that Goo is 13 months old, she LOVES the baby mozart and baby bach dvds. She will giggle , point and stare at the animals on the screen! She loves the puppets.<br><br>
Maybe if you can find something for your ds you can focus on Jackson.<br><br>
I understand the frustration. I have never been able to just set Goo down when she's on a roll. However, when she's "talking" herself to sleep, I can put her down and she can go to sleep that way (talking is more like moans where you KNOW crying).<br><br>
Good luck!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,700 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks everyone for your posts and suggestions. I have put several of them to use the last couple of days. I felt terrible on Wednesday and was so frustrated. It was terrible letting Jackson CIO, I never did it with my own (whho has SERIOUS sleep issues still - was up 7 times last night!) and I really don't believe it works in the long run. So, I changed my attitude. I took "don't fight it" advice to heart and I also had a suprising change of heart from sparklemom's post.<br><br>
It made me angry that she suggested people should feel sad for these boys who I love so much and am so good too. I was really pissed and that helped me to realize how lucky I am to be here with them instead of in a cubicle in Manhattan like Jackson's mommy.<br><br>
So, we have been having good days now. I have been approaching the day with a positive attitude, I have been sling wearing more - especaiily so as not to fight for sleep (in fact, when he seemed reluctant to sleep just now, I wore him while I did laundry and dishes (ds is napping) and it worked great becaise he feel asleep and I put him in the swing that my ds had loved- which I brought up from downstairs recently), and I have also been using videos a bit. My SIL had baby motzart and enstein, so they watch them some to help with "transitional" time - like when I need to cook or do a round of diaper changes or put one to sleep.<br><br>
So, thanks again.<br><br>
PS. mamahammer, you and I should be our own tribe!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,474 Posts
<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">AMEN! I am constantly getting "Poor you! All those babies!" or "Poor babies, they don't have your full attention." Well, if not for this arrangement, both of these babies would be in full time day care with a group of 12 other infants. yeah, this is sooo much worse Not all families can have someone stay home with the baby no matter how hard they try. I need the money that my income provides desperately, adn this other family needs me. It all works out very well, even if it is frustrating at times!</td>
</tr></table></div>
ITA.<br><br>
Megananddavismom, dont let one post upset you. it angered me too. however, i dont feel sorry for you per se, just bad that you were struggling a bit. I like the idea of the ocassional swing or bouncy seat. Maybe a back pack, if he's not too small. you are doing whats best for your family, and it benefits two families at the same time! Some of us just have to work, so to me that is putting my child first, by putting or keeping a roof over their heads, and food on the table. good schools. soem people just arent satisfied unless youre living in an abandoned schoolbus on a dirt road wearing hand me downs to "prove" your devotion to your kids.<br><br>
good luck, and i love your positive attitude. I try everyday to think that "everyday is a good day", to count my blessings, to be thankful and grateful for my husband, kids and a well paying job.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
32 Posts
Just one other suggestion for you. How about having mom bring a t shirt or something that she's worn and putting it next to Jackson in the sling or where ever he's trying to sleep. I used to do this for my dd when she was napping (it's helped her be able to take better naps now)<br><br>
Anyway, keep up the good work! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up">
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,684 Posts
<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;"><i>Originally posted by megandavisdon</i><br><b>I also had a suprising change of heart from sparklemom's post.<br><br>
It made me angry that she suggested people should feel sad for these boys who I love so much and am so good too. I was really pissed and that helped me to realize how lucky I am to be here with them instead of in a cubicle in Manhattan like Jackson's mommy.<br><br></b></td>
</tr></table></div>
I'm glad you could take that bit of negative energy and turn it into something positive! Good for you!<br><br>
Glad to hear that things are going better, too. I know how long those sleep deprived days can be! My son isn't a consistant sleeper either. My friends and family think that I'm nuts for nursing him back to sleep. They think that CIO is the only way to go.<br><br>
I think it's great that you have such a close relationship with your nephew. I wish my son had a cousin that close in age and proximity. My brothers just aren't cooperating!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
674 Posts
Holy cow! It wasn't my intention to offend you.<br><br>
As the mom of two closely aged dds I have personally felt the strain and stress that some days can bring. As they get older it gets much easier, but that knowledge doesn't make those long days in the meantime seem any shorter.<br><br>
Since your nephew is so young have you tried bouncing him lightly on a yoga ball? This works absolute wonders with all babies that I've heard about.<br><br>
Also, simply getting outdoors makes a huge difference. Somehow being outside mellows everyone. Works every time for us.<br><br>
Obviously a small break, which I know can be hard to come by, really helps. Sometimes after my dh would get home from work I would simply go for a drive by myself for even as few as twenty minutes. I came home feeling like a new woman.<br><br>
And, as you mentioned, sometimes just a dose of perspective melts away the stress.<br><br>
Best wishes
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
28 Posts
hey. i just wanted to say your doing a great job. i'm a working mom, although I get to be home two days a week (and weekends) and flex my time. i only have one dd, but i do understand the stress/tiredness/frustration of long days, short attention, etc AND the wonder of it all- imagination, time together and fun. I am blessed to have a wonderful caregiver- someone like you- who has vowed to love and protect my dd as much as i would during the day. If it wasn't for momma's like you (and her) us mommas who didn't have a choice about returning to work or not would be stuck with white room child care centers (which also have their place). maybe finding another mom (or dad) to spend some time with during the day- to chat or walk with- i find it's really great to have company for me (oh yea, the kids too! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
in peace.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love">
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,737 Posts
It's very stressful to have to deal with multiple crying kids and not have enough arms for everyone--I know this from experience. I'm also pleased to see you have gotten some great advice already.<br><br>
I wasn't a gadget-mom until I had twins, but now I'm really really glad that I have a bouncy chair (though and infant seat will do) and a swing. When both my boys are fussy (now that they're too big and strong and heavy for me to hold safely at the same time), I hold/nurse/rock one, and put the other in the swing or bouncy chair, facing me, and talk back and forth to each one. This seems to help, and when it doesn't at least they know I'm there. Thank god my toddler is extremely low maintenance and is content to play alongside me for the most part, or try to play/distract the babies when they're both howling.<br><br>
Tom and Dylan don't like the sling very much, but they do like a rebozo style wrap (Dylan especially), and wrapping them seems much more stable than the sling (since you must do a lot of bending and lifting when caring for two babies). My guys love it when I bounce/pat them in unison and time to a song that I sing. Sometimes I have to sing very loud at first to get the not-in-arms baby's attention, but when it gets through and they notice the rhythm in the motion it calms them down. You can also (especially if you're wearing shorts) cradle a baby in the crook of each knee and bounce them together (I'd put a hand under each knee for support). Um...well, it might help if you have a bit of extra padding, like me, for that to work really well. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> But when the kids have flesh to touch, sometimes it can tide them over. In that position you can switch off holding them too.<br><br>
Can you have a box of special "noisy" toys that you save for times when you're about ready to pull out your hair? That has saved my sanity quite a few times.<br><br>
Oh yeah, and even though I dislike noisy/plastic toys on principle...man, the Fisher Price crib aquarium works wonders for my guys. You can turn the volume down, it's got the bubbly white noise thing going for it, soft fading-in-and-out lights...I got it for a baby present, and while I would have probably hidden it in a closet with Fiona, it seems to soothe/distract either Tom or Dylan so I can take care of immediate needs of the one with them.<br><br>
What helps ME get through the day is the ability to get adult contact when I need it. Also, getting to spend one day a week with alone time for me and my little girl. I also give myself permission to cry with the kids when it gets really bad, and to just acknowledge to myself that sometimes I'm going to have to deal with all three crying and to just get through it breath by breath. Getting out for walks also helps.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,605 Posts
Gosh, I didn't read Sparklemom's post that way. I saw it just as an offer of empathy.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/shrug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="shrug"><br><br>
But, I can understand how you're feeling as well. Mine are really close in age and I've just learned that I need a schedule<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1">; ie. I know that every single day by 11am we will leave the house to go on an adventure. Baby naps on the drive there. They both get tons of exercise and excitement and then they both nap on the way home.<br><br>
Plus, if ever I get frustrated while home, we pull out the stroller, have a snack, and go to the playground.<br><br>
So, for us, it's plenty of fresh air and exercise even if it's snowing out.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"><br><br>
And, yes, Baby often hangs out in the backpack while I cook or clean.<br><br>
Good luck-you WILL miss these days. Really.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/biggrinbounce.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="bgbounce">
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,230 Posts
i had (and still have) the baby who's a handful and doesn't easily fall asleep. AND i only have one AND I work part time 9she's in daycare or with dh).....<br><br>
last week "princess no naps" appeared out of the blue and try as i could we jsut weren't taking a nap. so I needed to get to the post office and I saddled her up in the backpack and took the dog and off we went. she didn't sleep the entire time, but the movement made her chill out and made me feel better.<br><br>
oftentimes it helps us to have white noise....that baby will sleep on a train, in a car, in an airplane, next door to the lab, whereever there is a large fan noise. So we tried to emulate that at home. We put a big fan at the head of her crib and turn it on high (after putting her in a winter outfit). helps.<br><br>
we also received as a gift a walker/exersuacer thingy. she LOVES it. Currenlty she uses it as a little handhold to hold onto while she stands and she does laps around it (she's 10 months).<br><br>
dh tried Joan Jet.....dd was crying her little eyes out one day, dh got fed up, stuck her in the crib and cranked a little Joan Jet music up to try to "drone her out so I could get myself together"....only she was laughing and giggling so hard she wasn't droned out.<br><br>
along the same lines....dd LOVES music. We jam to anything and everything.<br><br>
and finally when we are really losing it here....we fill the tub with bubbles, put the baby in it and let her splash and play. water everywhere when we are done, but usually a tired baby results.<br><br><br>
Keep up the good work. Like any other job...if you're not frustrated being a SAHM somedays then I'd bet you're not fully engaged in the job.
 
1 - 19 of 19 Posts
Top