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The Grumpy Baby Diary: Bedtime Routine

Ah! Only two more hours to go and it will be time that my dear Miss. Grump will retire for the day. I muster up my non-existent energy so my baby is sufficiently stimulated, but not over stimulated. Something in me hopes, that if she is tired, she will fall asleep easily.

I had read many parenting books that told me to have a fixed bedtime routine for the baby so s/he knows what’s coming next, and readies itself for bed. The authors of these lovely books told me that we should eat first. That gives us energy for the playtime. There should be sufficient play time with enough age-specific activities. Then there should be a warm bath, followed by a soft massage. Fresh clothes, a ready bed, and we should have a baby eager to go to dreamland.

Well, good! Just that someone should have told my baby as much!

In my Miss. Grump’s world, there is no such thing as a parent-who-sets-the-routine.

  1. First of all, don’t make me eat when I wake up. So what if it has been four hours since I last had milk? No way, Jose! First, I want to investigate what’s in the toy cupboard. Maybe Saee has hidden something there she doesn’t want me to see. Hmm… there’s a thought!
  2. Okay, what’s that strange rumbling in my stomach? I demand food. Now. Nope, not the pureed pear. Nope, not the tomato soup either. Oh no, not milk again! I want something, I don’t know what, but I want it now! You are the mother, how come you can’t figure such a simple thing out? Oh man! You are such a lame excuse for a mother! Waaaaaaa…
  3. Oh, oh! Is that bath water? I wanna go, I wanna go, I wanna go. (Sweet munchkin, the water is a bit hot, let me add some cold water so it goes warm, please!) What did you say right now? It’s not hot, you liar! I am going to stretch this toe a bit to see if I can wiggle it inside the tub. Nope, not hot. LET ME GO THIS INSTANT!
  4. What? Why are you taking me out? Not the dumb clothes again! Not the white thing either. What kind of sadistic pleasure do you get out of torturing me like this? Give me my milk, lady. I know I am full, but I want the milk!

I see her eyes closing as half the milk is gone. The sucking has stopped. Should I? My hand moves furtively to tease the bottle out of her grasp. One eye springs open with suspicion. The eyebrows furrow a little. I let go of my grasp of the bottle. Soon it seems she has drifted off. The bottle is carefully sneaked out of the tiny clutches. I try not to make any sound or movement as I carefully try and get off the bed. One leg moves a little, and I freeze. There is no more movement, so I let go of my breath again. Mission accomplished!

Ah, the quiet! The bliss! I am the queen of the territory again! The world belongs to me! Yeah, I have all this time now! What should I do? Maybe I’ll read that book, I ordered gazillion years ago. Maybe I’ll spend some time with my older daughter. Maybe I’ll have an unhurried dinner! Oh the possibilities!

In walks the husband wearing his aftershave, and there we go. The baby is on her tummy; eyes wide open like pair of saucers with a big gummy smile on her face. Yup, dinner’s history. Again.

Dr. Gauri Kekre is a clueless, 30-year-old woman, who still has to find her calling in life. A dental surgeon by education, she has almost given it up to be a mommy to her two beautiful girls. She loves to be a ‘jack of all trades’ and dabbles some in writing, cooking and her latest fad, sewing. She writes off and on for her cookery blog and you can find her as @drgaurikekre on twitter (although she seldom uses it). Amongst the things she loves are her mom, her husband, her daughters and people in general.