For the first 3, 4, 7?? months of Kendall’s life he screamed nearly non-stop while riding in the car. (Time frames are non-exact because my brain suppressed certain memories in an effort to ensure my genes are passed on to the next generation via more than one offspring.)
Like, not just yelps or whines or cries, even. We are talking SCREAMING so loud it made my heart race, my stomach churn and morped me into, quite possibly, the world’s worst driver. We employed every trick in the book, starting with the one-hand-on-the-wheel-the-other-craned-in-an-impossible-position-so-as-to-JIGGLE-the-car-seat-behind-me. Then we added the “white noise” CD to the mix, meaning for months of our lives we listened to the repetitive sounds of a hair dryer and a vacuum anytime the car was in motion.
After a particularly grating drive to a family wedding, some friends told us they got their once-fussy infant to settle in the car by playing their music louder than the baby could cry. On the way back home that night, completely sober, we cranked up Elton John’s Crocodile Rock so loud I think our windows were shaking. Kendall was matching us with every turn of the dial. Oh no, he would NOT be silenced. It was a challenge, obviously, and he was prepared to bring it.
Just picture us, in our fancy wedding clothes, demon baby red-faced screaming in the back seat, cruising down the highway at 11 at night with the windows down, blaring-
Laaaaaaa, la, la, la, la laaaa, la, la, la, la, laaaaaaa
La, la, la, la, LAAAA!!
Oh yes, we sang along like the certifiable, sleep-deprived loons we were.
It’s been a good long while since we experienced an episode like that with him, clearly, as evidenced by the conception of the second baby.
Leyna’s always been pretty good in the car. As a newborn she just fell asleep anytime she was in her infant seat for more than 5 minutes. We were pretty spoiled by her. Now that she’s moved up to her rear-facing convertible seat since maxing out her infant seat weight limit at the tender age of 5 months, she’s not so quick to pass out. I think it has to do with the more upright position she’s in.
So she cries.
She does not scream. She merely cries a relatively loud cry. It doesn’t happen frequently, but when she gets going, Kendall can not stand it.
“NO, baby sister. STOP. No crying in the car.” he says.
“SHHHHHH!! Leyna, you’re being VERY LOUD,” he complains.
“STOP IT, YOU ARE MAKING ME CRAZY!” he shouts.
Boy, you. don’t. even. know.
And so I just turn the radio up, drowning out the crying baby and the frustrated toddler, leaving them both in their own little cone of karmic hell, smile and drive on to our destination.
Kendall is 3 years 1 month, Leyna is 5 months, and I’m getting really good at ignoring 2 kids at once.