Family

Parenting a High Needs Baby

Being a new parent is HARD.  It is such a change from regular life to this new normal… especially being a work at home mom, I felt like my life was turned upside down and it was really hard to communicate that with my husband.  We had several **talks** about this when my hormones were raging.  But as days have pasts and schedules have gotten better so has this new normal.

However, very early on I realized something about my little guy was so different.  First time I knew something was up: He didn’t sleep through his new born shoot AT ALL.  Ten days old and stayed up for 5 plus hours.  As the days went on he wasn’t asleep all the time like most newborns….he was constantly looking around trying to learn and absorb EVERYTHING. He was grumpy and I had no clue what was going on. I felt really isolated and like I was doing something wrong as a mom.

I felt so frustrated that many things weren’t helping like others claimed.  Colic drops, probiotics, sleep suits…. They all helped a bit but there was no magic answer.  Everyone said it was colic and a flip would switch and it would go away and he would be a new baby.  However, the “switch” never just flipped after 6 weeks or 3 months or 4 months.

So after some research [thanks Dr. Google] I stumbled upon Dr. Sears 12 Features of a High Needs baby.  I realized my little guy fit almost every category.  I finally felt like someone understood.  The hours of purple crying, shushing and swaying…. other people had to do that too!

Trying lots of different things I will say Tripp has GRADUALLY improved. Once he hit 5 months and can sit up unassisted it has helped TREMENDOUSLY.  He can play independently and get toys within his reach and he LOVES that. Those first few months were very hard and I can tell you when someone tells me I will miss those days I cringe.  Crying for hours is not something I will EVER wish on someone.  I weigh less now then when I got pregnant from all the rocking and bouncing.  Many parents develop PTSD PPA or PPD from having a baby with colic… it is THAT serious and that traumatizing.

So here I am writing to hopefully help the next first time parent [or new parent to a high needs baby]. Here are some tips to help keep your sanity.

  1. Remember it WILL get better. Self talk is so important in those early days.  Those moments while they seem to last forever WILL end.
  2. Find a support group.  I LOVE The Fussy Baby Site Support.
  3. Don’t be afraid to try new things [doctor approved of course].  Our little guy liked one thing one day and something new the next. You want an arsenal or tricks with a HN baby. (We had a swing, rock and play, shushing, colic calm, probiotics, car rides, bath time, walking outside [in the crazy Texas heat], baby wear, noise machines…. just to name a few)
  4. Ignore those who are not there to support you. Unless they have had a HN baby it is VERY hard for people to relate.
  5. You are doing the best you can and THAT is good parenting.
  6. Coffee and wine are your friends.
  7. Buy meals/snacks that are easy and quick. It helps eliminate that frustration. [granola bars were my best friend]
  8. Seek professional help if you feel lost, depressed or that you may harm yourself or the baby.  Those days can be very dark so don’t feel like you can’t speak out about it.

Tripp has challenged me to be such a strong and patient mom and I wouldn’t change his strong personality for the world.  I feel so much better knowing he is just a strong personality and coming to terms that there is no “cure” and thats ok! I LOVE that he wants to constantly learn and be stimulated! That doesn’t mean we don’t have bad days or frustrating days but those days are spreading further apart because this is the first time for EVERYTHING for our little family and we are all learning!

What worked for your fussy baby?

Bonus: Here is my Reality Vs. What is on Social Media pictures:

XOXO Gabbing Ginger

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