By: Heather Somaini
No, I didn’t mean for you parents – although a cocktail from time to time helps doesn’t it? I meant for those little creatures we call our children. Well, I mean it’s not really drugs. It’s just Baby Tylenol. But we started calling it baby crack at some point. It’s like the solution to EVERYTHING!
We found out about its miraculous and restorative powers early on. The first eye-opening incident was after their first real set of shots. It was late in the afternoon on a very nice Friday so we decided to take the babies to the Century City mall. It’s an open-air mall so it’s lovely on a balmy summer evening. We were having a great time shopping when we decided to have dinner. We sat down at a new Italian restaurant, ordered, and Izzy immediately started crying. We tried everything in our power to calm her down. Nothing, nothing would work. I took her out and walked her around.
It’s amazing how loud that cry was reverberating off the walls of that mall. People stared. Why in the world would that baby cry like that if I weren’t doing something terrible to her? I walked and walked. I bounced and bounced. I tried to not make eye contact with anyone around me. I finally walked back in to the restaurant and asked Tere if she had brought the Baby Tylenol. She couldn’t find it. I knew that was bad. We asked if we could take all of our recently ordered food to go. We knew we had to leave immediately. Izzy was clearly not slowing down and it was working up to a very unhappy evening. I went outside again and kept walking her around. Eventually I gave in to the wandering eye of a set of young-looking grandparent types who had been watching me. I explained that Izzy and her twin brother had just received their shots, that we forgot the aforementioned drugs at home, and that we were desperately trying to get out of the mall and home. They were very sympathetic and chatted about their grandchildren who had also received shots that day. We raced home, administered the necessary drugs and within 10 minutes they were asleep. Perfect little angels…again.
We were returning back to Los Angeles from Christmas in the great state of Tennessee when the second big drug incident happened. The babies were almost 10 months old and we were delayed in Nashville for some reason. I pushed the babies in their stroller in big circles all over that terminal. We had picked this flight specifically because it matched their sleep schedule and now it was a mess. They weren’t falling asleep at all. When we finally got on the plane, there was a 2-year-old near us that was just melting down.
(By the way, why do they always seat the people with kids together, as if we all want to be near each other? I don’t want to hear a baby/kid cry any more than anyone else on the plane does!)
Free was a sensitive baby; he’s a sensitive boy now. When he was upset, the only thing that would calm him down was walking. He would fall asleep on my shoulder as I walked all over our living room late at night. He heard that 2-year-old’s temper tantrum and started to cry. The seatbelt sign had come on and even though we were just sitting on the tarmac, I couldn’t walk him like normal. Nothing we did could stop him. He just cried and cried. In the 2+ hours that went by with him crying, Tere and I argued over what to do, passengers glared at us and one well-intentioned woman even attempted to ask me if she could help. I asked her if she really thought she could do a better job than his parents. She promptly left.
Tere finally gave him the Baby Tylenol. Free kept crying. I was bouncing him on my knees a bit when his last cry emerged and his head fell forward. I looked at Tere; she looked at me. We were so happy the crying had stopped but now terrified that something terrible had happened. I sort of shook him a bit. He picked his head up, let out the tiniest of cries and then slumped his head back down. He was down for the count, completely asleep. I held him the rest of the flight, so peaceful and quiet.
We never left home without Baby Tylenol again.