The first cry of a new born is a triumphant sound. Our daughter came out of the birth canal blue in the face because the umbilical cord had gotten around her neck somehow during active labour. It was a frightening sight, so when she uttered her first yelp, the doctor and nurses all cheered with delight. We too were overjoyed. It was a cry of life and it gave us much relief.
Subsequently, the cries grew longer, louder and more frequent without a hint of what was wrong. These cries, as we soon found out was due to hunger, colicky discomfort or even stinky diapers. These were the easiest to solve: a quick feed, a tummy rub, or a fresh diaper would return her instantly to her normal sleepy self.
Then, there were those that we couldn’t figure out at all. Cries that went on and on for half an hour or more, cries which wouldn’t even taper down with rocking, hugging and soothing. The worst were harsh cries, where her face would turn red and she’d cough and choke from all the sobbing.
Scary as it may sound, the lesson I have learnt was that all cries, regardless of reason, would eventually stop.
Stage 1: The Overeactive
Initially, I’d jump at every whimper or squeak, thinking that if I picked her up quick enough, she’d