Thursday, January 13, 2005

Thrills & Spills on Wheels

Every single parenting book I've read, every baby website on the internet lists car-rides as the secret weapon to pacify babies. If your child is crying his head off, "the gentle rocking and swaying of a car ride will calm him down."

It seems to be true. Pip's little girl loves it in the car. Five minutes into the journey and the kid is off to dreamland. Bulldog's 5-month-old boy loves his car rides so much that every stop at the traffic light ticks him off. But he does great on long drives. Maestro's kid falls asleep everytime he's in the car. Six years on and he still sleeps everytime he gets in the car. Cocaine's daughter is an angel in the car.

So what happened to Baby Jesse?

He hates it in the car. 10 minutes into the journey and it'll get his diapers in a twist. He'll be screaming to get out. Screaming! At the top of his lungs. Sometimes he'll cry so much he chokes on his own spit. Imagine it; crying, choking, coughing, gagging and all of it in full living colour. Try focusing on the road under those conditions.

Mae, who sits behind with him will try anything. She'll hold his hand. She'll sing to him. Play with him. Distract him with a rattle. Switch on his little musical toy. And nothing works for any more than five minutes. We've tried changing his position, padding the car seat, playing the CD of his favourite lullabies. Nothing. Sometimes I'm tempted to play the radio at full blast to drown him out. Hahhah. But he's louder than anything we have in our car. Heck, he's so loud that if my horn ever breaks down I'll just squeeze the boy.

Anyway, like any good desparate parent, I turn to other parents for advice. "Maybe he hates your car," Cocaine says unsympathetically, taking yet another jab at my unglamorous car. I drive this big blue bread truck that gets us from point A to point B. Sure, I could save up for a Beemer but by the time I can afford one, the only benefit that Jesse's gonna get is to score chicks with it.

I guess we'll be staying home this Chinese New Year. *sigh*


  1. Check out the discussion at my parenting forum. Maybe you will find the answer there :
    Fact is : Your kid is trying to worm his way out of the car seat into mommy's lap. A test of wills.

  2. my boiboi lups car rides and he will try very hard not to fall asleep. he lups to watch outta window. this started when he was a baby. will only doze off when he's really sleepy and tired.
    btw, he's fascinated wid cars... can identify most car makes & logos b4 he was even 1.5 years old! dumped all his books and read his daddy's car mags instead!!!

  3. when he's grown up and driving you around in his bread truck, do return the favour. :lol:

  4. Same thing with Yiyi. she's restless in the car!
    So everytime we went back to Mami's hometown, about 2 hours drive, we went shopping first. Walk until she's all tired and sleepy, then only we start our journey. In the car, Mami would read her the Alphabet book, until she dozed off.

  5. wow... i am saved! *go envy me* ;)

  6. lah.. pity you James. thank God Amir falls in the majority who loves car rides. but he will simply goes restlessly whenever the car stop at traffic lights or the husband gotta pay toll.
    when I was a kid, my mom said i went on crying from KL to Sabak Bernam when we rode by bus. mom said, that was my 1st and the last journey. my dad had to buy a car later so that they can go balik kampung.
    sounds a bit materialistic lil girl huh? but heck, i'm NOT! :P

  7. james, plan your journey per his sleeping hour. e.g. if he normally takes a nap at 10am, you can start driving at 9:55am. and do remember to ask mae to pat pat him :)

  8. james, refering to the comment made by lilian. baby jesse IS trying to get to mommy's lap. He needs some assurance that mommy is around, not by holding his hand,singing to him, etc. Baby Jesse wants mommy's warmth. try it, and once he is comfortable the both of you can try and wean him off slowly.

  9. Maybe you can try playing one of those "Music For Babies" cassettes in your car?

  10. Hi! Sorry to hear that Baby Jesse didn't enjoy the car rides. Emily didn't enjoy her first few either but now she likes it. I wouldn't say love it because she sometimes fusses, esp when we are stopping at the lights!
    What I do with Emily:
    I make sure she's well-fed and rested before taking her out. I always place her in the car seat when she's in a good mood and that way, she doesn't fuss. If you try to place Jesse in the car seat even when he's crying, he'll hate it more.
    Oh yes, music calms Emily down too. I had to take her out alone the other day and the moment she fussed, I turned on the radio and she quieted down immediately!
    Don't give up. You have to keep taking him out to get him used to it. Start by shorter car rides and then to longer ones :)
    Good luck!

  11. Not going back to Taiping for CNY? Oh dear... No harm trying Ariel's wise tips which worked on baby Emily. Then you can introduce those lovely, lovely trees at the Taiping Lake Gardens to Jesse. Nothing like a bout of country fresh air for the kid after all that city living.

  12. You sure have a weird sense of nick names =)

  13. Dude,
    At least you have a choice about the CNY thing :)

  14. Thanks Lillian, you're doing a good thing with the forum. :)
    Oli, poor Mae more than poor James.
    Anonymous, I envy you! Wanna trade kids? :lol:
    You bet I will, Fly. I'll be like that old guy who drove Billy Crystal crazy in Forget Paris.
    Hahhah, that's a great idea, Papi. I will do that.
    Wait till your girls are teenagers and you have to fend off all the wolves, Buaya. Then you'll envy me. :lol:
    Hahhahh, your dad bought a car on account of your crying? Maaan Hazel, you have the greatest dad!
    Doesn't quite work, Beauty. He always gets up after half an hour or so!
    No Leo, there can be no compromise in the car. After last week's incident when a child got killed in a car accident, we realise that kids must always be strapped-in.
    That hasn't worked yet, Mdmafia. We'll be trying Enigma next. Maybe it'll scare him to sleep. :lol:
    Thanks Ariel, that's great advice.
    Yah Coolgal, I want so much for Baby to go home to his Daddy's hometown. But I guess we'll have to wait.
    I have weird friends, Annu. :)
    BobK, that only cos my mom loves her grandson more than her son. "Don't come back if it'll make him suffer!" :)

  15. [That hasn't worked yet, Mdmafia. We'll be trying Enigma next. Maybe it'll scare him to sleep]
    are you nuts ? he'll get a heart attack

  16. James, please write me. I have a couple of questions about a blog you wrote on Dec. 28. In particular, hearing Dr. Samuel Doctorian. Thanks

  17. sorry james dat anonymous was me :p sorry u cant trade my kid wid jesse kekeke u gotta live wid him :D

  18. wouldn't worry so much. these kids..they change like the wind. let him bawl his eyes out as much as he wants. he's gotta know not everything is all peachy dory. ;-)

  19. A friend's baby can't sleep without listening to the cars passing by. The poor maid has to take the baby out of the condo and stand at the main road before the fella can sleep...and in the car, while the mummy is driving, she has to periodically open the windows to let the sound of traffic come in...cute eh..hehe..
    And his favourite lullbay is Britney Spears' "Everytime" and "Toxic" :)
    His mum calls him a "Sakai" !! :P

  20. Yup, BabeKL. We make 'em, we live with 'em!
    MOO+1: Yup. Welcome to the school of hard knocks. :)
    Cherry, at least he falls asleep. Hehh.

  21. Can I come and visit you for Chinese New Year? Heh heh heh!