Thursday, October 16, 2008

she can't really understand what he's saying, right?


Scene: The bedroom of Eric and Charlotte Cantwell.

We hear a cry from the nursery, two doors down the hall. Charlotte (who has been up to feed Her Highness three times since 10:00 p.m. the night before) groans. She silently counts to 30, trying to determine if this is a real cry, or just a false alarm. After a bit, she determines that it is a real cry.

CHARLOTTE: Hey honey, will you go in and check on her? She shouldn't be hungry again so soon.

ERIC (drowsily): Huh? Oh. Okay. . . What should I do?

CHARLOTTE: Just check her diaper and stuff. Or, maybe she just wants to be cuddled or something.

ERIC (a little reluctantly, but willingly): Okay.

Eric wraps himself up in the fleece blanket that Charlotte's sister gave her two years ago for Christmas and leaves the room. Soon the crying stops, and we hear muffled baby talk coming from Eric. Charlotte lays there, tensing her muscles, trying to determine whether or not it is safe to relax and go back to sleep. Soon we hear some more whimpering, alternated with Eric's baby talk, then quiet, then whimpering again. Eventually, we hear some bona fide crying, and then nothing. Charlotte hears footsteps in the hall and Eric appears, sans Heather.

ERIC: Sorry, She's not going for it.

CHARLOTTE (confused): What do you mean? She's quiet, right?

ERIC: Well yeah, but that's just because I just said, "I'll go get mom".

CHARLOTTE (laughs): WHATEVER! Like she understands what that means!

ERIC (also laughing): I'm tellin' you, she does! I say it to her all the time, and as soon as I do, she settles right down.

CHARLOTTE (sarcastically): Oh-sure. Right, I'm sure she knows exactly what you're saying.

ERIC (still smiling): She does! You watch. She's chilled right now, but as soon as she figures out that you're not coming in, she's going to freak.

As if on cue, we hear a scream from the nursery. With a resigned sigh, Charlotte gets out of bed and follows Eric to the nursery. Once they enter, Heather settles right down. Charlotte assumes the nursing position, while Eric checks again (and then changes) Heather's diaper. Eric hands Heather to Charlotte, and we fade out.


And there you have it, just another average day at the new-and-improved Cantwell home.

One more thing, and then I'll close. I have a new mantra that I repeat to myself. In the past month (yes, Heather is exactly one month old today), I've rotated through several phrases that I repeat to myself when I'm feeling weak, nervous, unsure, or exhausted. some of them have been:

"I will not doubt, I will not fear, God's love and strength are always near" (Hymns # 128)

"Be still and know that I am God" (Psalms 46:10)

"Strive for a full feeding at each feeding" (On Becoming Baby Wise-I don't know what page, and I don't want to look it up now)


"You can't spoil an infant at this age by picking them up too much." (My mom, Heidi, and 'What to Expect the First Year')

But, now, as I said, I have a new mantra. You want to hear it? I got it from Amanda, who left it in a comment to the "tummy time" post. Here it is.

"I am the mom and I know what is best. Not some lame pamphlet."

Indeed. Thanks Amanda.


Jake said...

That's pretty cool about the "I'll go get mom" thing. I, for one, believe it.

Tasha said...

I think the "I'll go get mom" thing works so well that dad's go to that play in the playbook sooner and sooner with each passing day or arriving child.

michellejohnnie said...

That is something I've pondered many times and I have com to this conclusion about if babies understand what I am saying. It is this: I DON'T KNOW.

Jodi said...

LOL! Dads say the darndest things! Now you need to reverse this little trick on him. Step 1-pump a few stand by bottles and place in fridge or freezer. Step 2- at 3:30 a.m., 6:30 a.m., etc. you say what you said. Step 3-when he says I'll go get your mom you say "here's daddy and the bottle is in the fridge." (PS I know you are not supposed to warm in microwave-but we do for 15 seconds. Works like a charm!)

Jeri said...

Love the new mantra - stick with it!

and yes - I'm a believer. whether or not she knows the words may be in question - but she know the intent and the result. she's a smart one - that Heather girl!

Jeri said...

oh - one more thing - I don't remember the ages, but she could just be hitting a growth spurt - for me that always resulted in more frequent nursing until the milk production increases.

jeff said...

Ahhh, first children.

and dads don't have the equipment to supply what the baby wants. Why go for the bottle when the fresh stuff is right there?

Amanda said...

AWESOME, Charlotte. I'm glad I could contribute to your mantras. That totally made my day.

That is classic about the "I'll go get mom" line. Heather is really advanced for her age to get that concept already.

Darla said...

Oh Charlotte, I just love reading your stories. I can imagine myself sitting right there hearing it first hand. You and Eric are totally perfect for each other! :)

LClark said...

Little kids are geniuses. I am telling you that your daughter is training you to do exactly as she pleases.

She's smarter than you think... that's why we've survived so long. It's built in. Instinct.

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