Thursday, September 9, 2010

The Phantom Baby

It might have been called the Phantom Menace, but that name has already been taken. I am talking about the baby that I can hear crying, the one that doesn't exist. Does anyone else have this problem? When J was a baby I would wake up hearing a baby cry, it was a normal cry, I would get out of bed and realize that I couldn't hear the crying anymore, get back into bed and the crying would resume. I would poke Ken, he wouldn't necessarily wake up, but most of the time he would move and his breathing would change rhythm and the baby would stop crying again. It didn't take too long for me to figure out that the baby I heard crying was actually an odd combination of Ken's deep sleep breathing and the creaking of the ceiling fan.

Well last night I heard a baby crying. Ken was not in bed yet and I thought the baby was asleep. This crying was not your normal crying, it was horrible, colicky crying. I felt so bad for Ken and the baby that I got out of bed. No crying. Hmmm. Where is the baby. In bed, asleep. Hmmm. Ken heard me up and about and came up to see what was wrong. "I heard a baby crying, but I guess it wasn't ours...." and so I went back to bed. It wasn't too long before I heard the baby crying again, loud, rhythmic, inconsolable. I had to help that baby, so I got up. No crying. I was very frustrated I couldn't sleep because every-time I closed my eyes that phantom baby was calling to me. I don't know how to explain how I felt other than to say I was "Keyed Up" (I just looked up what that means because I wasn't sure it was the right word, "Nervous, Strained, Anxious, Tense" yep, it was the right word) AND my heart hurt, physically, it still hurts.

After a few minutes our baby did wake up, and he did start to cry and oddly, though he has never been as upset as the baby I could hear when I closed my eyes, he got kind of close to that inconsolable wail. This scared me even more. I was able to console him, I figured out that he was hungry (though it wasn't time really) and I fed him, right after he was done eating he fell fast asleep and stayed that way for 4 hours. I still heard the phantom baby when I closed my eyes, and to make it worse I had a song stuck in my head too- the chorus of "Can't carry on " by Crowded House, it was taunting me
Can't carry on this way (just go to sleep)
Before it gets too late (just go to sleep)
Doing damage to my brain
Well here we go again....
Over and over and over. I close my eyes, the phantom baby cries, I open my eyes and Crowded House is telling me to go to sleep or I will get brain damage. It wasn't fun. I started to sing primary songs to myself, and eventually I fell asleep.

So, once again, I find myself quite tired, and now I am worried that my baby will become Colicky and that I will never sleep again- well at least for 3 more months. I guess there is really nothing I can do, other than try my best to be a good Mommy. I can do that. I just wish the Phantom Baby would leave me alone, can't it tell that I have my own problems to deal with, as well as my own REAL, flesh and blood baby? Ugh.

On a happy note, there really has not been much crying today- in fact the baby has been taking a pretty good nap, sleep begets sleep.....hopefully for baby and mommy.

1 comment:

Emily said...

I had a similar problem, though not with a phantom cry. It was only with my daughter, though.
I used to feed L in bed, and try to stay alert enough to put her right back into her crib when she was done. I would go to sleep after she was gone, and have dream after dream that she was still in bed with us. We suffocated her multiple times in my dreams. I kept reaching over, and would think that Tony's arm was a very big and hairy baby arm. It went on FOREVER . . . and I didn't sleep too well.
The happy ending is that it did EVENTUALLY go away, and that she's still alive. I didn't have that problem with M, though I also didn't have to worry about Tony rolling over on HIM since he wasn't home.
Good luck!