xxi Introduction Patti Ideran, OTR/L, CEIM Having a baby is a thrilling experience. Having a fussy or high-need baby… well, it can be a challenge! Ask any parent who has ever had a fussy baby what it’s like and we all remember vividly, no matter how long ago it was. My first baby was an angel. He ate well, slept well, was always happy and con- tent, and fussed only a little when he was hungry. I was tired, but I thought, “This is easy!” I never questioned my parenting skills on my first baby. It is very rewarding as a mom to be able to calm your baby but extremely discouraging when you cannot. This is the fussy baby, my second baby. I second-guessed myself all the time on my fussy/high-need baby. The ques- tions were nonstop: What could be wrong with my baby? What was I doing wrong? How could I emotionally deal with a fussy baby? And would I ever get a good night’s sleep again? I often felt lost on how to parent this beautiful but fussy baby. I felt inadequate to help him through his irritability. I did get through it, with the support of my great husband and family. And my fussy baby did grow out of it and was a fabulous toddler. That experience led me to devote my time and energy to understanding and addressing these types of babies. I first started helping friends and my clients to understand their fussy or irritable babies. This was also when I met Mark Fishbein, MD, FAAP, pediatric gastroenterologist, my mentor and the driving force behind writing this book. We had many discussions about babies with colic and how we could help them and their parents. He would evaluate the medical causes and I would work on the behavioral piece. And it worked! During this period, 91% of our referrals for infant colic showed almost immediate improvement in either fussiness, sleeping, or feeding. In today’s climate of TMI (too much information), it can feel overwhelm- ing when you try to look online and learn about your fussy baby. There are many “mommy blogs” or social media posts and messages with inaccurate, unreliable, or even harmful advice. You probably also receive all sorts of loving tips from well-meaning grandparents, friends, or sisters…but if they CALM_FINAL-pages.indd 21 CALM_FINAL-pages.indd 21 1/23/21 12:45 PM 1/23/21 12:45 PM
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