Saturday, March 15, 2008

the tip of the tongue, the teeth, the fits

It’s funny how exhausting a good night’s sleep can be… The last week and a half we’ve been catering to poor spud’s sore mouth as those final four molars start pushing through the tectonic plates of his jaw on their journey to their place as peaks in his dental range. We’ve had tantrums and grumps; red cheeks and drool; unexplained tears and that’s just been me.

The poor little thing has been waking up in tears after naps as well as every few minutes all night and we’ve kept him dosed up on as many pain killers as we can without mortgaging our house to pay the Boots bill. We’ve tried everything – teething gel (no use, YOU try to get your finger into the very back of a grumpy toddler’s mouth without dumping your load of gel onto his lips and getting your finger bitten), Calpol, baby Neurofen, teethers and co-sleeping. The only one that worked for him was getting to sleep in our bed. Worked instantly – from crying in his sleep to deep happy breathing. The only trouble was he had to have each of us holding one hand and apart from snoring, he moves around like a windmill meaning that we got even less sleep than before. And then he’d wake up and be so happy to be with us that he’d have to thump us both resoundingly about the head and then clamber all over us shouting joyfully and trying to reach our phones from the side table so he could ring China to tell them the good news. At 5am.

Surprisingly, all this prancing about with no sleep has been like revisiting my youth – staying up most of the night and then getting up in the morning, mainlining coffee, getting through the day by putting on the Ramones and promising myself a nap and trying to forget that I’ve been up 21 hours. Unsurprisingly, when I look in the mirror I get told a different story – I need an emergency hairdresser. And a facial. And Botox. Best not to look really. I’ve been very productive however, all that manic energy is really useful when it comes down to preparing piles of documents and doing the mountains of laundry necessitated by a teething toddler who was treating the pain in his mouth with endless gulps of water and juice.

Anyway, so the molars have chucked in the towel. They’ve not come in, I think they were just flexing their molar muscle, uttering a few threats and have hunkered down to plan their next thrust. In the meantime, we’ve been sleeping and I cannot believe how tired I am. I mean, two uninterrupted nights sleep in a row and I just cannot function. It’s like, now that my body thinks it’s going to get regular sleep it has withdrawn whatever self-medication it was administering to keep me standing and I am in a permanent state of collapse. In fact, we all are. The Frog is talking in single-syllable words and the spud is spending a lot of time clutched to my shoulders sighing deep sighs.

I'm not sure what we're going to do when all this teething business is over. I mean, it's been defining our lives for the last year. Our little potato has been such an easy baby, sweet and funny, lovely and sunny - except, except when there are teeth to be grown. It's going to be interesting to see, once the fab four make their entrance, if some of the things we blame on teething are in fact down to some other cause.

In the meantime, I am going to bed.

Cross fingers...

9 comments:

Driving With the Brakes On said...

Cooper rang in his 1st birthday with 5 teeth, and then spent the next 10 months cutting a new tooth every two weeks . . . it was like a demonic possession had taken over my child. Maren is currently cutting her third molar (because, really, why should they come in pairs?!) and I am again wondering where my happy-go-lucky child went. (I am also wondering why on Earth I decided to give this kid thing a third go-around, but that is a whole other story!) I hope your body regulates soon, and I hope all of the Spud's bad antics really are just teething related . . . or can be blamed on the Frog's genes.

Jen said...

I can't function at all if I don't sleep, so I really hope things get back to normal for all of you! Oh, and the laundry - I am definately losing the laundry battle. Having a laundry room on the main floor would be heavenly, but I have two flights of stairs to lug it up. Grrrr.

Ms Anonymous said...

While I don't think you will need to find reasons other than teething as I believe the Spud to be perfect in every way, just so you know I have a friend with Satan's Spawn as a child and it's actually amazing how many excuses one can find to brush away unlikeable behaviours in nasty little demons should it prove necessary. As I have said though, as the Spud is perfect this is a tactic you shan't be needing to employ.
(But just in case you are curious I can give you reasons why anything from punching your mother to destroying perfectly good Things just for the sake of it, are perfectly acceptable.)

jenny said...

oh oh you poor dear!! My girls seemed to breeze through their teething fairly easily and then I've watched my nephews turn into Satan's spawn and quietly counted my blessings. I hope the next round won't be as tough on you OR the spud. When the girls did have a bit of chewing to do to help those teeth come through, I gave them a damp washcloth for them to chomp down on. Seemed to work and it helped mop up the drool as well.

Sweet dreams my dear, I'm off to work at the shop for the next few days and won't be posting as much. I've explained it on my most recent post.

Ryan & Michelle said...

Sorry to hear about the teething induced lack of sleep and then the sleep induced lack of energy. Oh the joy of a happy baby at 5 AM! Thanks so much for stopping by, although I am more of a picture poster than a writer :) like you.

Sparx said...

Driving - OMG, teeth every two weeks? Poor you! I can't wait for it all to be over either, good luck with Maren's teeth!

Jen - two flights of stairs to do your laundry? Time for a re-fit! For better or worse ours is in the kitchen which means handy access to the washing machine for the spud to put all his toys in...

Ms. Anonymous - too kind, my dear too kind... you see I think I may need some of those excuses, Spuddy boy is yet to prove he is not actually satan's spawn!

Jenny - hope all goes well at the shop both working and selling! You've got so much energy for someone up the duff!

R&M - a joy indeed! Although I suspect we'd both rather have a sleepy baby at 5am!


Thanks everyone for coming by and commenting!

Jonny's Mommy said...

Jonathan has been cutting molars for months now and I swear one day one is actually going to pop through. We've gone from "is it his ears?" to "is it his teeth?" to "is it gas?" to "is it his teeth?" again. He very rarely sleeps the night through and we always wonder what it is causing it. I've had a coffee cup permenantly glued to my hand for 16 months now, sometimes I fill it with coffee instead of whiskey. Sometimes.

Sparx said...

It's teeth. Has to be!

Sue said...

Same pinch! The Bhablet is in the process of popping molars and while he doesn't seem to be in much pain, it's certainly had a bad effect on his sleep and temper.