During a recent Colic Solved Seminar I was approached by a woman who worked in daycare and claimed to have the cure for colic. She was so excited about her methods that she asked to demonstrate technique with the infant doll that I had on hand for my seminar. I sensed I didn’t have a choice. So holding the doll in a cradling hold with arms nearly extended and head well supported, she swung the doll in a dramatic arc sweeping from below her hips up to the level of her shoulders. Deep, lunging steps were made in rhythmic time with the swinging of the baby. The maneuver bore a striking resemblance to a nocturnal tribal dance that I had witnessed years before as a medical student working with the Zuni Pueblo. She called her moves “the colic dance” and swore that it fixed every baby that she ever touched.
Out of respect, I made note of her dance and assured her that I would keep it in mind.
But there are no magic moves, noises, sounds or recordings to ease the baby suffering with fatigue or pain. Various neutralizing sensations are known to settle the disorganized baby. Be it the hair dryer, music, or a particular rhythmic pattern of bouncing, every parent finds what works and in each case their colic dance can create transient moments of magic. While dancing will always serve to take a baby’s brain off of things, parents should always be aware that babies suffering with identifiable causes of pain need to be treated. And that’s a dance that I can’t seem to stop.