Friday, February 22, 2008

Imagine Me and You, I Do

Remember how worried I was that my furry baby was going to try and eat my human baby?

Well, after spending over two weeks at my mother's house and coming home for the odd day here and there in an attempt to slowly help him adjust to the new family member, The Momes made his grand return one week ago this past Friday.

During his daytime visits, The Momes made it pretty clear that so long as we continued to shower him with the ample attention to which he is accustomed, he would probably not eat the baby. In fact, as long as she stayed out of his way and didn't make any noise, he really couldn't care less about her. Which was awesome, except that babies make a LOT of noise.

So there were a few tense moments when baby was crying and Momes was barking and lunging at her. These moments, while admittedly few and far between, were devastating for me and slowly boiled up in my brain until the first night that Momes was home for good.

It was a rough evening - the baby was crying and the dog was confused and agitated by this disruption in the new routine he'd just adapted to at Nana's. Now back at home and wondering why Mom and Dad weren't all over him as usual - The Momes reached his breaking point and snapped at Bella as I was feeding her. He didn't bite her, and I'm still not sure if he intended to or not, but it was enough to push me over the edge.

I cried semi-hysterically for about two hours, while the baby screamed, the dog barked and my mom tried her best to help calm all of us down. She recognized that I was approaching panic and offered to take The Momes back - "Maybe you're not quite ready for this just yet," she said.

And I wasn't. But I knew that it was now or never. We had to see this first night through, it had to happen sometime, it was the only way he was ever going to start to adjust. And the longer we waited the harder it was going to get. For him and me.

I should note that the panic over our first night with The Momes, and not so much over the daytime visits, was because he has always slept in the bed with Crown and I, ever since we brought him home, but of course now Bella also needs to be in the bed at times. It was very important to me that we not have to banish the dog, but that I could safely and comfortably have Bella in there with us to nurse at night and even for the odd nap here and there during the day. At night she sleeps (ha! sleeps! as if...) in a moses basket next to our bed, but does periodically settle into our bed with us. It significantly reduces her fussy-hours and increases the sleep that we all get.

Well, I'm very happy and relieved to report that we did survive that first night, and every night since. After I calmed down, got the baby to settle and bundled everyone up for our first bedtime together, The Momes passed out cold and barely even woke up for Bella's night feedings. I took her out of the room for the first couple, and then tried her out in the bed for her early morning feed. The dog not only did not eat her, he didn't even wake up. Just kind of rolled off of my pillow (yes, he sleeps on my head) and tucked himself up under my free arm. I shed a couple of happy tears to have my two babies nestled together in my arms. Since that night, we have all co-existed quite nicely, both during the days and nights.

We still have a few moments when baby is fussy and Moet is cranky. I certainly do not trust him 100% and would never leave the two of them together unattended. Bella stays up off the floor and out of reach for now. But we are getting there. And I'm confident that with a little more time and patience, the two of them are going to be the best of friends.

Please enjoy some photo evidence of The Momes not eating the baby. And of the two of them semi-peacefully sharing space during a Sunday morning family nap.

Momes pretending she doesn't exist:

Hmmm... slightly interested:

Definitely considering a small nibble:

Mom is very tired, but so happy to have her two kids snuggled with her, without any eating of each other at all:


FlowerPot said...

so happy to hear it's starting to work out. trust me, one day when bella's walking, it's momes' turn to worry :)

sugar mama said...

Bella is just getting more and more gorgeous... I want a cuddle with her! You're doing a great job, both kids look very peaceful and happy - as do you.

And yes, Bella will get her turn one day when she likes to grab everyone's hair, noses, glasses... and "pat" Momes!

Anonymous said...

Congratulations, on your baby girl! You picked a beautiful name! I have been reading your blog now for quite some time and decided it was time to introduce myself! Hello! Hope you are settling into motherhood with ease. Looking forward to your next post! :-)

Anonymous said...

p.s. My name is Stephanie - not anonymous! I don't have a blogger page - but I hope to start one...