How do you curb an urge to eat chocolate?  Don’t buy it.

How do you curb the urge to go into the store you love?  Don’t go near it.

How do you curb the urge to tell the waiter that the red in your steak means it’s not well done like you asked for, and even an idiot would know that, and how are you still working here? Along with other cuss words and vocal put downs?    Remember that your child is watching and will copy whatever you do or say.  At the most inopportune time.

How do you curb the urge to yell, scream, and pick up the baby and shake it.  Wondering why this 3 month old can’t get that you want a little peace and quiet?

Well, that’s going to be different for everyone.  For me, it was taking a moment, and not wanting what happened to me, happen to my child.

I can’t say what exactly happened to me.  I was really young. Only 2 months old.  I can only say what I have been told.  Read the hospital records and see what was said when my birth mother brought me in.

Just for the record, they don’t match.

I have been called weird, strange, silly, goofy, and a few other names.  Both nice and not nice.  I am not making any excuses for this.  I am sure that at some time, I deserved every one of those names.  I am just saying, that to know my past is to better understand my situation.

I’ll get into that at another time.

After I had children and my wife and I decided that I would stay home, I worried about things.  I had strange thoughts. Mostly due to depression. (Feb. 10th “Battling Depression at Home”)

But then I got to my snapping point.  My daughter was 3-4 months old.  My wife had been back to work for awhile now.  My day went like any other. Until the princess decided something was wrong.  And started crying.  And crying.  And crying.  Nothing seemed to work.

Lay her down in bed.  She cries.

Try to feed her.  She cries.

Hold her and walk the hall.  She cries.

After about an hour of constant crying, I had had enough.  I stormed into her room and pulled her out of the crib. Stomped over to the changing table and checked her diaper, cursing and fuming the whole time.  When I saw that the diaper was clean I picked her up to eye level.

My grip was getting tighter.  Why won’t she just SHUT UP!?!!?!!

Shut up. Shut up. Shut up! Shut Up! Shut Up! SHUT UP!!!!!!

My mind was blank.  I couldn’t think of anything but the noise.  The screaming. The crying.

I just wanted it to stop.

I just wanted her to stop. Stop stop stop stop stop stop stop stop.

I stopped. Turned around and put her back in her crib.  Then walked out the door, closing it behind me.

I went into the living room.  Turned on the TV.  I had to calm down.  I went to the fridge and got a soda.  I tried to take my mind off the crying. Turned the volume up as loud as I could stand it and sat there. Trying to drown out the noise.

I don’t know how long I waited.  I was numb.  I got lost in the TV shows I was watching.

After awhile, I noticed that something was different. I turned down the volume and waited.  It was quiet.

I went back in the room.  She had cried herself out. She was sleeping.

I watched her for awhile.  Made sure she could wake up.  Then let her sleep.

After that day, I kept in mind my limitations.  If I thought I was getting ready to snap, I would put her to bed, find a toy, or something she was interested in and leave.  Take time to cool down.

When Our second child was born, I pretty much had my things under control.

I never snapped on Monkey.

So, before you get an urge to shake a baby, think about it.  Decide what you will do if you get really mad, frustrated, tired and sad.  Take a step back.  And curb the urge before it comes.

Because those urges hurt more than just you.