(This post is mainly targeting parents with newborns. You single folk might want to steer clear. Babies are a joy. They only poop rainbows)
When my second baby was born, I recalled how difficult it had been to get my firstborn to sleep. I always assumed it was colic, or my understanding of it. But in truth, it was just first time mommy mistakes, and not colic as I later came to find out. My firstborn Z was so easily stimulated, which led to skipped naps, which only made him more tired until he spiraled into crying fits.
Thankfully, I learned that early on and by the time he was a month or 2, we had a good system going with minimal crying. At 4 months, an elimination diet showed us that he was allergic to dairy, eggs and soy (there is a reason I’m bringing this up, I promise)
So when S was born, I was delighted that he slept, ate, pooped routinely and days went by much smoother. I had stopped all legumes, beans and caffeine at birth so I thought I was just the smartest mama on earth. I figured out the secret to baby sleep.
At 5 weeks, one bad crying fit turned into hours and then days of crying. If S wasn’t sleeping, he was crying. And like clockwork he cried anywhere from 5-6pm till 11pm, daily. I was exasperated, spent, and completely drained. I had no energy for my first born either, and much less patience than he deserved.
I remembered the allergy his older brother had, and decided to stop dairy as well. In addition to starting him on herbal supplements (prescribed by a pediatrician)
I have been off dairy for about 10days, which admittedly coincides with the herbal treatment – so I cannot be conclusive of what is really helping – but the crying sessions have diminished significantly, some days not at all, others a little more. My gut feeling tells me it is the dairyfree that is helping more than anything else. I could test my theory by going back, but I am truly frightened by the thought of hearing him cry again. This incessant crying raises demons, even in a mother’s head. It makes you feel hate, failure, guilt, all bundled with extreme fatigue. It is not a good place to be, and it need not be the only place.
If you have a baby with colic, there are massages to be done, supplements and even medications that can be given safely (always always seek professional help for this), and nutritional therapy to be tested (mainly elimination diets)
It is hard admitting all this, but I think it’s important to remind mom’s, particularly breastfeeding mom’s, on the influence of their diet on their babies. Food can truly be medicine and its effect is not to be underestimated.
Raising a child is the single most challenging joy of my life, and as I learn to navigate, I hope some of my trials and errors help your journey as well.