Sunday, November 09, 2008


You know what's coming from the way she holds her body; she stiffens, then arches backward, then screams.

And so it begins.

Sometimes the crying lasts for hours, sometimes it's only 15 minutes. Still, you're always surprised by the red numbers on your alarm clock because it feels like forever every time.

You walk.  Bounce. Swing. Sway. None of it ever works, but you try anyway. In the end, you lay her on the bed and curl up beside her. You take her tiny fists in yours and press your lips to her damp forehead  and your tears mix with hers as you whisper, "Sssh, it's okay. It will be over soon." 

You don't know if you're talking to her or to yourself.

"Why does your baby cry so much?" your helpful neighbor asks. 

"She has reflux," you answer. You say this in a nonchalant way, as if it's no big deal, as if the crying doesn't bother you, as if you've got it all under control. 

When it's finally over her whole body relaxes, and so does yours. You kiss her tiny fist, and she unfolds it against your face and smiles at you through the tears dotting her cheeks. 

"Goo," she says, as if nothing was ever wrong.

"Goo," you agree, and you scoop her into your arms and hold her tight, tight, tight.