The Amazingly Obnoxious Sound of the Baby Buzzer!

June 2, 2011 at 10:03 pm , by 

Six months.

The Dadabase

Want to hear the most annoying sound in the world?  No, it’s not that weird mutant sheep sound that Jim Carey makes in the classic comedy, Dumb and Dumber. Instead, the noise that rattles my cage and ruffles my feathers every time is the cry of my son.

Yes, he is an easy going little guy.  But he is human.  So when he cries for lack of sleep or food, everyone in the room becomes aware of it.

It’s a high frequency, shrill, scratchy, siren that makes me turn my head a little sideways whenever I hear it.  There is no way to ignore him when he cries.

His cry is motivating; that’s for sure.  It instantly motivates me to rush to fix whatever the problem is; mainly so the noise will stop wrecking my inner ears. But also because he’s a little baby who can’t communicate the way we adults can. All he can do is cry, at this point in his development.

So I have to respect that process, despite the fact that his crying is downright offensive to listen to.  He doesn’t ask nicely.  He doesn’t give me a minute to finish up whatever I’m in the middle of.  Hearing that cry is the worst sound to be interrupted by.

The Dadabase

But God knew what He was doing when He designed babies to cry like they do. Imagine a world where you could actually ignore a baby when they need something.  I can’t.  A baby’s cry is part of the necessary breaking-down phase of parenthood.

My son’s cry is the height of what I call “the baby buzzer.”  If his cry is a “10″ (on a scale of 1 to 10), then down at “1″ is his gentle correcting sound he makes when I am rocking him to sleep, but not holding his head at the right angle.

I hear, “mrrrraghttk…” It’s like his way of saying, “Nice try, but no cigar.”  That sound makes me think of a cross between Frankenstein and the sound effect when you touch the tweezers to the metal in the board game Operation.

It can be challenging for me to deal with a baby who can’t communicate the same way as I do.  Because I am a guy who is obsessed with open, clear, positive communication. But with a baby, a lot gets lost in translation.  Somewhere between my “Why are you crying?!” and his “I’m laying down on my pacifier and it’s hurting my back!”

I’ll be glad when he and I speak the same language.

Yes.  I know, that’s a whole other ball game: A kid that can say “no.”

baby sleeping

dad from day one: Leg Cramp Alarm Clock

Twenty-two weeks.

Last week, my wife started suffering from leg cramps due to the pregnancy.  About every other day, I wake up to her crying out in sharp pain and moving around in the bed.  Though I should know better by now, in my “just awoken from a dream where I am exploring underground caves in canoes with people I haven’t seen since 3rd grade” state-of-mind, still mostly asleep and only technically awake, I always assume the worst- that she is scared because she saw that someone has broken into the house, so I now I need to pull out the closest weapon available to play Dexter or Chuck Norris.

But no, it’s another leg cramp.  And what can I really do?  Sympathize (which is easy to do) and start massaging her calves.  No matter which one I start with, it’s always the wrong one.  Murphy’s Law.  And I typically start massaging too hard, then too soft, then by the time I get it right, time has ran its course and the Charlie Horse has trotted away.

Baby Jack will basically be the size of a papaya until Week 25.

Eat more bananas for potassium.  Drink more water.  Keep salt by the bed to lick.  Elevate the legs.  Avoid standing flat footed.  She’s trying it all.  And still, the leg cramps still happen.

Ultimately, she’s pregnant and leg cramps are part of the deal.  They will probably be replaced by another annoying inconvenience.  And what will I do?  What can I do?  Be there.

What The Bump says about Baby Jack this week:

Watch what you say — baby is now able to hear outside noise from down in the womb. Studies show that baby finds gentle music and your own voice most soothing. Nipples are starting to sprout, and that little face is fully formed. And, baby’s starting to settle into sleep cycles, snoozing about 12 to 14 hours a day. It shouldn’t be hard to figure out when — just pay attention to those kicks as they start and stop.

All pictures with the “JHP” logo were taken by Joe Hendricks Photography:



Wake Up, Get Going, Run Hard, Wind Down, Shut Off, Repeat

There is something comforting in routine.

Most of us participate in some sort of daily routine that guides along our bodies and minds throughout each 24 hour period.  First, we get stimulated with coffee, tea, a hearty breakfast, or even just by reading the newest daily articles on MSN or our favorite online author.  The day hasn’t officially begun until we have done whatever it takes to “wake up”.  I know on any given day, I’m no good until I’ve been awake for 90 minutes- until then, I’m just a Sayid zombie.

Once we are in gear, we spend most of the daylight hours doing our thing.  Being active in body and mind.  Good stress hopefully more than bad.  Often the part of the day where hours seem to pass the quickest, since this is typically the busiest time. 

But then, as we approach the final work hour of the day, we begin reaching for the towel- the towel to throw in, and call it a day.  This begins the “wind down” phase where we start becoming less active.  By the time we get home from work, we’re ready for whatever it is that helps us to drift off just a little, to wander out of our “active mode”. 

Mindless TV, playing on the Internet, a halfway nap, a walk outside, a beverage of choice- something to signify to ourselves- “I’ve still got stuff to do, but I’m at my own pace now”.  Then we do whatever we want to do (along with most whatever those we live with want to do). 

A few (or several) hours later, we’re asleep.  Then we start it over the next morning.

This is nothing groundbreaking, as we are all obviously familiar with the routine of an average weekday.  But for me, it’s interesting to see this typed out in front of me.  It shows me though a routine often symbolizes monotony, routine also keeps this interesting and different.

To imagine a typical weekday without our “wake up” and “wind down” devices…

Just to wake up, fully alert, and remain that way all day until we go to bed and instantly fall asleep.  No coffee.  No playing on the Internet or reading.  Nothing to float us through the mundane parts of the day. 

Nothing superficial to push us or jerk us in the right direction or up to the necessary speed. 

We rely on routine.  We rely on vices.  Routine helps our lives from becoming too routine.