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February 5, 2013

Newborns Are Noisy

Who doesn’t love the image of a sleeping newborn? So precious. So peaceful.



In our house, so loud.


When Jacob was little, he made some noises while he slept. He sighed. He chuckled from time to time. Now, as a two-year-old, when he’s awake, he imitates all kinds of noises around him from the words we say and the songs we sing to the yips of small dogs, the whirring sounds of kitchen appliances, and Henry’s cries, sighs, and grunts. And there are a lot of those.


Especially when he’s sleeping, Henry will squeak, squawk, grunt, and even meow. There are some things that we’ve forgotten are different for newborns than they are for toddlers—for example, Henry minds a dirty diaper very much; Jacob would rather play than have his changed. Then there are some things that are brand new, because Henry is a brand new person.


Sometimes I think he’s trying to remind us that he’s there, so we don’t forget about him in Jacob’s vying for our attention. I remind Henry (because you can reason with a newborn, right? Still no? Huh.) that his father and I are second children. We’re on his team.


It’s taken time to learn that some of these sounds seem to be his way of self-soothing. It might not soothe me—say, at one a.m.—but as the mom, you don’t always get to win.

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