They are wonderful little versions of us. And versions of us they are: all our foibles and follies in one smiling, crying, pushing and kicking mess :)
Maybe that's the worst of it - that when you make a mistake with a baby (ie: let them choose their sleep time, or eat time, or follow too many 'baby help books') your confusion shows up in a frustrated, non-verbal, lack of motor control way! And all I can think is how did I make him (and ME) so angry, frustrated, and confused out of LOVE???
It's amazing how much reading the babycenter.com polls help, though! How, knowing that other mothers' think that they aren't cut out for this, that they've 'broken' their babies, that they wish they could go to a JOB, makes me feel lighter and kinder to myself and to him.
And REALLY that's all I can do while I'm here in the trenches trudging through the muck...
Example: if I'm supposed to put him down in his crib when he's calm and he screams as I'm putting him in: when do I put him down? While he's crying? I don't put him down? I just keep making the motion like I'm going to? And then after two hours of this from midnight to 2:30am, I decide I can't go on and I leave the room with him crying in his crib and he is asleep in 4 minutes flat! What? That wasn't in the Baby Whisperer instructions. Now I'm a mass of confusion as he sleeps for his morning nap and cried himself to sleep for that and I think, "Am I making an unhappy baby in an effort to get him to stop being overtired?"
Cause he was a happy, friendly baby (with inklings of nervousness and an unsettled nature that worried me) when he called the shots - those inklings and the fact it was just killing me made me turn to the Baby Whisperer: I wasn't sleeping or showering and in the stress was slowing production of my milk and he won't eat solid food, so he was losing weight fast and there are NO tips for that in the books!!! See your pediatrition. She just said that she was worried about it. Yeah, me too... so I'm drinking all the mother's milk tea I can and trying alternate sleep methods in an effort to get some!
Blast... I just have to keep going. And hope the confusion clears :)