Thursday, January 19, 2012

Superpowers 101: Speaking A Foreign Language, Baby

**Edit** I guess the video has been removed from youtube. Sorry! Here a few links to the information I was refering to.

One of the greatest mysteries in life is understanding waht you baby wants. All that crying and screaming, your exhaustion and frustration, leads to a miserable expereince as a mother of a newborn.

I recently watched this video. It is fascinating! What really impressed me is that I recognized the hunger sound, the distressed sound and the tired sound as soon as I heard them. I would not have been able to repeat it for otheres but I recognized it right away. I alos realized that my youngest son often had the "lower gas" cry. I recognized it immediately when I heard it on the video but I didn't know how to handle it at the time. Not all of my children had this problem.

I reflected that modern mothers are struggling with this because our society has changed so much. We no longer live in small communities where children grow up around other babies and children, hearing their cries and seeing how to respond. We don't live with expereinced mothers who can point out the meaning of the cry to help the mother learn it quickly.

We have segregated ourselves according to age or expereince or current situation. In doing so we have severly limited ourselves and aour abilities to handle all of life's challenges. We feel like failures. We have convinced ourselves taht we should be able to do everything through instinct or reading a book. We alos let our pride interfere. I remember feeling slightly affronted when more expereinced mothers tried to tell me what my baby needed. When I have casually commneted "Oh, your baby is so tired!" I have recieved the same glares I likely gave a decade ago.

I had one other thought while watching this video. Parents seem to think that they need to get their babies calm and quiet before they put them to bed. There is this idea that we should be all our child needs. I have noticed with my own babies that sometimes they are crying becaseu theya re tired...of me! SOmetiems they want to go to bed and sleep but I have stubbornly bounced nad burped and fed and cuddled, sure that they needed something I hadn't tried yet. And they did! When I finally learned to put my babies down from time to time we were both happier!

Each child is different in how they want to be soothed and comforted. There is still a little trial and error involved even if you recognize the cry. My advie to young mothers is to swallow a little pride and prayfully concider the commnets and advoce of more expereinced mothers. Not all will be useful (or even safe!).

Motherhood is challenging, there is no question about that! But it doesn't have to be miserable.

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