It was six and a half years ago I became a father. My wife and I were ready; we had discussed it at great length considering it took time and a team of scientific experts to get pregnant. We read all the parenting literature available. We were level headed adults who felt everything falling into place.
At about nine months the crying stopped. For the first time, we felt like we could venture out of the house and re-acclimate ourselves to society. Slowly, and I mean SLOWLY, we started to realize everything was going to be o.k. We hadn’t given birth to Satan’s child after all. Our daughter is six and a half now and an amazing well adjusted child. We felt guilty for so long because of all of the tension and worry she had to pick up from us. It took us years to shake it. This made us realize just how vulnerable our mental health is and what people can take for granted. We didn’t go “over the edge” but we got an awful damn good look over it.
Whenever we meet someone who tells us that they have or have had a baby with colic, I feel an instant connection. If they are going through it right then, I want to hug them and cry with them. Others won’t understand like we do. I would take in a complete stranger’s baby for one night if it meant then could get ONE nights sleep.
The closest I have ever come to killing another person was a “know it all” guy who explained to me that “Colic is a western culture problem and that if you just do the right thing, the problem doesn’t exist.” I considered killing this guy. Doing hard time and getting some rest didn’t seem so bad. My wife and I shared years later that we secretly wished for an illness or injury to hospitalize us during those nine months, just so we could get some sleep.
I know all parents feel like their child is “special”. Very few “special” children almost KILL their parents. We survived! We have grown stronger. I feel like seeing our daughter happy is twice as rewarding because of what we went through. Parenthood is an amazing thing. I don’t know if I would change a thing if I had to do it all over again. I like the way our little girl turned out and maybe the crying had something to do with it. We’re different too. I think we have more understanding and empathy for others. When we talk to new parents and ask if the baby is sleeping, we are genuinely happy when you say yes. It’s not just meaningless chit chat. If they say no, our hearts go out to them in a way that’s immeasurable.