When Bean is fussy, like right now at this very second, it is hard to not feel like a terrible mother. She is teething right now, a front tooth and some molars, and she is having a terrible time of it. Eating is interspersed with tears. She stops playing and starts to cry. And nighttime is terrible. Bedtime is the worst. She screams and cries until she is out of breath. She chews on her little fingers. She writhes in our laps and claws at us in desperation.
It's so hard when you've done everything in your power to help (lots of hugs and cold teethers, clove oil and frozen washcloths...) but she's still so sad. We don't believe in letting her cry it out, but sometimes that's exactly what she has to do. In our arms, of course, not alone in her crib. But lately it seems that in order to fall asleep she has to release some of this pent up tension with tears and screaming.
It's hard. Comforting her as best I can and still she screams into my shoulder the most terrible screams I have ever heard. On nights like tonight, after she has screamed it out and falls asleep, Husband and I hold each other for a minute or two. A silent sign of support. We know we are good parents. But knowing is not the same as knowing.