She was 5 weeks old and I am pretty sure I had spent 10 hours that day swaying her from side to side while standing under my microwave fan because for some reason that noise seemed to help calm her. I guess maybe it mimicked my womb. My three year old had spent way too many hours watching Netflix on my computer because his two hour limit to his kindle had long run out and I didn’t know how to add more time. I was exhausted. Worn out. In survival mode. And desperate for sleep. I would get my baby to sleep and as SOON as I set her down she would wake up crying. And we would start the process all over again. Back to the fan we would go. I just want to enjoy my baby. I know it’s just a season but seriously? I cannot go on like this. Each day felt like 10.
And God knew. Because he sent an angel the very next day in the form of a sweet Latina, also a mom to little people, 3 girls under 5. She came because my husband was doing a website for her and they had a meeting at our house.
But I think it was a divine intervention.
“Ohhh what an adorable baby. How is she doing? How are you? Can I hold her?” She asks taking Ivory before I can even say yes. “Well actually she’s not doing the best sleeping.” I respond. “Oh really can I try she asks? Do you swaddle her?” “Yeah I tried that but she doesn’t like it. She just cries and pushes back trying to break free,” I respond. “Can I try?” She asks. “Sure,” I say handing her one of my swaddle blankets.
We move into my room where Ivory was co-sleeping with us because she didn’t seem to like her rock and play either. It was like the number one item on my baby list because I had heard such great things about them. She swaddles her like a pro and asks me if I have a pacifier. I hand her mine saying she doesn’t take that well either. “Here let me try.” She sets my swaddled baby in the rock and play and shushes her while holding the pacifier in her mouth and within minutes she is asleep. Without being in my arms. It’s the first time.
What in the world. I am in shock. What just happened?
“You really are like the baby whisperer aren’t you,” I think to myself, “How did you do that?”
“Babies need to be trained,” she tells me, “It’s okay, you’ll get it. I’ll help you.”
And I start to cry. My babies asleep for the first time without being held and I am the one crying. She starts to pray over me and then hands me a gift, casually saying, “I felt like I was supposed to get you this on my way over.” It’s a eucalyptus scented stress relief candle. Who is this woman? I mean seriously?!
“Call me anytime, I want to help you,” she says, “And it’s okay to let your baby cry a little bit. As long as she doesn’t have gas and isn’t hungry. She will be okay. Get gripe water by the way, it does wonders.” She teaches me how to swaddle on a toy elephant and makes her way out the door after having a much shortened business meeting with my husband.
My life is forever changed. I feel God’s grace. I am so thankful. Was I dreaming or did that really happen?
I call her three times over the next week and she comes every time. We learn that Ivory does have tummy issues and the gripe helps immensely. I went off dairy and she was like a new baby, no longer arching her back every time I held her. I keep practicing putting her down awake but drowsy, which never used to work but she is starting to get it. Turns out she loves to be swaddled and loves her pacifier. We moved her out of our bed at 2 months into her own space. She does so well. Better than I imagined.
Our life isn’t perfect by any means but gone are the days holding and swaying my baby in front of our microwave fan. Praise Jesus for that—and for my Latina angel.
What about you—What are the baby items that have changed your life?