Confidence Game

I have been slow to update the blog. Considering that for months and months I had been on a steady 3-posts-a-week schedule, the trickle I have managed to produce in the last two months is that much more noticeable.

Certainly I am busy. I’ve outlined fairly well I think how much time caring for a baby can eat up. But more than that I’ve gotten lazy. Rather than taking my free time and using it for productive avenues like chores or writing or even something enriching like reading more, I find myself playing Flash games and watching TV. Granted, for a guy who wants to write movies and/or TV shows, watching movies or TV is never truly wasted time, but still. Doing “research” for screenwriters is a very slippery slope.

I can work around those things, though. Joshua has gotten older and is a bit more “manageable” now. By which I mean he’s apt to sleep for longer stretches because he’s big enough to not need to eat quite as much these days. And laziness is conquered by just nagging myself enough. A daily task list reminder to write for 30 minutes should do it. The real crusher is confidence.

The older Joshua gets and the more confident I feel in our ability to care for him, the less confident I feel about my ability to advise others regarding childcare. Maybe this is the real reason why most baby books are discussing tips and techniques for babies that are older, around the four month mark. I’m in the trenches here, mortar shells exploding in the hazy skies above me. Who am I to tell the poor sap next to me that next time he goes over the top he should really work on his running form? We’re down here to get a job done, and who really cares how we get there?

I can see the heads of my readers who are parents nodding away in my mind’s eye. I know, I know. You could have told me. Thanks for humoring me while I was wide-eyed and bushy-tailed.

Raising a newborn feels more and more like a game of MacGuyver. Janelle and I are working to keep Joshua happy with whatever we happen to have at hand. And that’s what every parent does in the end. Advice from someone telling you how to hold your child, or the proper ways to feed are almost certain to be useless in your case, at least in part. After hundreds of pages of reading and hours of discussing and receiving advice from friends and family, I can’t say for certain that any information has been of real use to me outside of “Sometimes they’re just going to cry, and it’s really hard to listen to it and not really be able to help.”

The methods we’ve used for Joshua feel so home-brewed and the troubles we have with him are so much a part of his personality as they are of ours that the situation here is its own little spit-up and poop snowflake.

I’m sure I’ll get to a point where I can regain a bit of confidence in my ability to share useful info, but it’s tricky to track down those items that are both universally applicable and specific enough to be useful.

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