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more noise and other disturbances

He grunts. He snorts. He simpers, whimpers, and moans. He squawks, and clucks, and oinks. He wheezes and pants, and sighs like a wounded badger. If not an entire menagerie, then Munchkin certainly resembles a small, feral animal. S may have anticipated this, but for D the biggest surprise of parenthood has been just how noisy our baby is — especially when he is not crying. When he sleeps his breathing is so loud that it calls to D’s mind his step-grandfather, who literally shook the house when he snored.

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Given our friends’ anecdotal accounts of the first months of their children’s lives, we think we’ve lucked out thus far. Most of the time, Munchkin is very calm and mild-mannered. And, for now at least, he usually sleeps like a champ. Even so, there are moments when we can’t help but think that we share a home with a miniature psychopath. One second he is cooing and smiling so delightfully it melts your heart and the next moment he starts wailing uncontrollably with no rhyme or reason, or any warning.

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The rub is, there are only a handful of things that truly upset him — he either needs to be fed, changed, or rocked to sleep — and yet we can’t guess the cause of his discomfort a surprising percent of the time. Yesterday, for example, an apparently content and sleepy-looking Munchkin burst into uncontrollable, ear-splitting shrieks as soon S handed him to D. “He needs a diaper change and is probably overtired,” she said, so D dutifully trod upstairs to change and pacify the little man. Not only was his diaper almost completely clean and dry, but as soon as D took it off, Munchkin started peeing — all over his own face. He shocked himself so much he actually stopped screaming while D laughed uncontrollably, caught off guard and too amused to help.

There is a phrase in Russian that — when said about someone — literally translates to “you won’t be bored in their company.” It’s not always used charitably, but it is rather fitting when we think about taking care of our baby boy. You have to keep your sense of humor about you; otherwise you’ll drive yourself, and everyone else around you, completely mad.

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One Comment Post a comment
  1. Sugarplum grunts and snuffles a lot, and she’s started cooing and squawking as well. Quite the menagerie, indeed!

    May 2, 2014

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