As much as I love my son -- and if you read this blog with any regularity, you know that I love him to an almost sickening degree sometimes -- I'm having a very hard time with the new phase. Since the tooth has poked its wiley little ridges out in the open, Alex's evil twin has taken the stage. I know the poor boy is in pain. In fact, I'm utterly convinced that this is the reason the power or powers that be decided that teeth should come in between six months and three years of age -- the less recollection of enamel spears sawing their way through your dental tissue, the better. I know that the poor boy is tired. I've slept a total of 1.5 hours straight at any given stretch for the past two nights. He is awake every 45 minutes needing something: a pacifier, a kind word, a pat, his blanket.
But the combination of pain and tired makes the poor boy a whiny little man! He's not happy sitting, he's not happy lying down, he's not happy standing supported by mommy. He's just not happy. He wakes up from his naps his usual chatty, cheery self and minutes later realizes that he's not supposed to be happy because his gums are exploding. Damn those teeth. I know he will need them for many things later in life, but I'd love some Mork from Ork experiment where a glowing orb could just sneak into his mouth and force all the teeth to magically appear.
Anyway, the general daytime crabiness, I'm dealing fine with. I keep reminding myself that this is just a phase (one that other parents never tell you about!) and it too will pass. I cuddle when needed, encourage independence when needed and generally do my best to fulfill my role as Personal Assistant to the crabbiest mini-sumo wrestler ever. (Yes, another aside, but this one is too good to not tell you. We've taken to calling Alex "Sumo Kevin" because if you were to magically morph my husband with a lilliputian sumo wrestler, you have Alex. He is the spitting image of his father right down to the diaper. No just kidding about the diaper. At least in Kevin's case. Alex still wears one because we haven't subscribed to the new European "you're-a-peein'" in the toilet at 6 months [tee hee, pun was to funny to pass up] poddy training techniques!]) But this nighttime not sleeping routine has got to go.
I've tried everything to get him to sleep. Pacifiers scattered in the crib so he always has one to suck on. Wet washcloth for him to suck on. Cold teething ring. Sleep on your stomach, sleep on your back, sleep on your head. I've even tried drugging my child into slightly longer sleep stretches with ample servings of Baby Tylenol. Today I felt guilty about the two nights of unsuccessful drugging. My medicine paranoia (I hate to take medicine and hate to give medicine) kicked in, and I can't live with the guilt. So I found these homeopathic teething tablets. They melt under his tongue and are supposed to provide relief. Now don't get all preachy on me. I read the internet warnings about these things. I also called our pediatrician who assures me that they are safe. And much better than Oragel for babies which numbs his mouth and makes it so he can't nurse because he can't feel whether he's latching on.
So here's to Hyland's Teething Tablets. May that be all that they are cracked up to be. Or I might be cracking up from night #3 without sleep.