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The Witching Hour: Is It Real? My Babies Say Yes

Do you believe in the witching hour?

My husband wholeheartedly believes that the full moon causes him to be an a-hole.

I assert it’s just his personality.

Yet whenever a full moon is rising he comments on it and implicates the evening likely holds unforeseen difficulties.

Similarly, he is certain the witching hour exists and wreaks havoc on babies.  Specifically, our babies.  Although I am not superstitious, I am inclined to agree with him.

In European folklore, the witching hour is the time when supernatural creatures such as witches, demons and ghosts are thought to appear and be at their most powerful, and black magic at its most effective. This hour is typically midnight or the “time in the middle of the night when magic things are said to happen.”

The term may refer to any late hour, even without having the associated superstitious beliefs, as can be seen in the Webster’s definition: “The middle of the night, especially midnight.”

The term “witching hour” can also refer to the period from midnight to 3am. At “3 a.m. it is the devil’s hour, as opposed to 3 p.m., when Jesus was said to have been crucified”.

In England, the witching hour begins at 3am and runs till 4am. The hour before midnight is also used for the practice of witchcraft

Source: Wikipedia

Violet’s witching hour was eight o’clock in the evening.  A crappy witching hour, to be sure.  That’s when exhausted first-time parents are trying to unwind after a long day of tentative, stumbling, bumbling parenting.  But, without fail, every night she fussed and fidgeted, often cried and generally refused to be comforted while we frantically wrung our hands and chugged beer sipped wine before she would blessedly fall asleep. 

I have discovered Henry’s witching hour.  It is, unfortunately, at five in the morning.  Hankster takes his evening meal around seven and has been sleeping all the way through his ten o’clock feeding, right until one o’clock.  Score!  I feed him again around one and then he sleeps until four-ish.  I wake up again and feed him, each time optimistically hoping that, with a full belly, he’ll drift off to sleep until Violet wakes up at seven.

I don’t think that’s ever happened once.  He fusses, fidgets, tries to poop, begs for more boob and is just generally out of sorts for hours. Instead of fighting him I’ve recently taken to just bringing the little feller back to bed with me.  It’s the only way I kind of get some sleep.  Perhaps my make-upless, nighttime face wards off any ghosts and demons because the Hankster snuggles into my face and will fall asleep for little stretches of time before waking up and fussing.  Each time I move close enough that our noses touch, whisper “Mama’s here.  Shhhhh, sshhhhh” and exhale my apparently delightful morning breath all over his face and he’s asleep in no time.  Who knew morning breath could have healing properties?

Does your baby have a witching hour?  Is there a specific time of day that, without fail, your child is a fussing, fidgeter?

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