Wednesday, December 10, 2008
You wake to your baby screaming. He's terrified - you can hear it in the high pitched wail, see it in his staring eyes that can't see you, feel it in the tension of his little body as he thrashes trying to get away from whatever demons pursue him. You can't wake him - his eyes are open but he doesn't recognize anything or anyone and he screams so hard it makes him choke and cough. Tear stream down his face and there's nothing nothing nothing you can do. This is what it is like when your child has night terrors, more properly called "confusional arousal". JJ has had these episodes about once or twice a month since he was around 3 or 4 months old. Usually they only last about 5 minutes, and at first we thought it was just a bad dream. Last night though he had an episode that lasted 15 minutes - which is a life time for a helpless parent. I hope he never has another one.