I started a blog over the weekend about how I have a toddler who has decided in the last 2 months or so to have sleep "issues", but she was refusing to nap & so I put it in my drafts folder with plans to complete it on Monday when she went back to school. But it's been one of those weeks & I just sort of forgot about it.
This morning I was reading one of the many wonderful blogs I've gotten hooked into through the twitterverse (Apathy Lounge) - and her latest entry just really hit me hard about how FAST it all goes, this childhood thing. I decided I should write about that (while I'm baking cookies - HA), but instead I found this draft about my Mommy Struggles. So decided to finish it first instead. Goodness, I'm all over the map sometimes!
This past Monday night I decided not to give in to the Master Toddler Pleas & would let her "cry it out" (even though it is completely contrary to the whole Attachment Parenting philosophy), b/c I was going to have my bed back to myself again no matter what.
She cried and screamed, barfed, and cried some more. I sat in my room listening to her on the monitor with my heart breaking. I went in every 5-10 minutes to reassure her that all was okay, that mommy loved her & that I'd see her in the morning, but she needed to sleep in HER bed tonight. Ultimately, after going back & forth from her room to mine for over an hour, she still wasn't settling down so I made the painful decision to NOT go until she was asleep. It took another 20 minutes of hysteria & angry baby screaming, but FINALLY she fell asleep.
Of course, I didn't sleep a wink that night as I busy feeling like the most awful mom in the entire universe.
Tuesday night, I make decision to follow through with my brilliant plan to get this kid back into her own bed. Please note that Dexy has ALWAYS slept in her own bed since she outgrew her bassinet at approx 2 months of age. She has ALWAYS slept through the night too, with very few exceptions (until her recent night terrors - but that's another story for another day). The only time I've ever been of a mind to bring her into my bed is if she's a) sick, b) scared, c) we're snuggling &/or reading a book, or d) we are traveling.
(note: gotta love her sleep positions, right?)
Back to Tuesday. I had plans w/ my BFF for dinner in Seal Beach at Walt's Wharf. First night out sans child in AGES. I'm way stoked but unsure of how she'll behave. Babysitter arrives at 6pm, child pitches a HUGE fit about being left with babysitter. I finally just decide to leave after 20 minutes of vainly trying to validate her hysteria, er, I mean her feelings. As I walk down drive to my car, I can hear her screaming "no, no, no" from inside the house... Of course, 2 seconds after I leave, the baby sitter calls to say she is totally fine & they are already singing, playing, having a ball.
I have a marginally enjoyable dinner & arrive home at 8:30pm. Baby still awake, but I anticipated that. I paid the babysitter, get Dex situated in my lap for some book time and by 9pm with only about 5 minutes of protest on her part, she's sound asleep in HER bed. She slept through the night, until 8am as a matter of fact. I start to think perhaps we're on the road to success, either that or she's going into a growth spurt.
Wednesday night... we stopped to visit my dad on the way home, like we do every few days. Got home, had dinner, took our evening walk around the block, played, read, sang, and at 8pm I took her into her room for book time & ni-ni. She protested for about 5 minutes, then was out like a light. Never heard a peep out of her til this morning at 8:30!
So. Okay. I know it's only been three nights. But I cannot tell you how grateful I am that she's been back in her own bed, even if we have some setbacks in the future, b/c I get some much needed sleep & as a result of that, she gets a much more CALM & LOVING mom. And regardless then of how we got there, isn't that really what "attachment parenting" is all about?
From where I'm sitting, some battles must be fought so that I can be a better mom. For me, that means being rested, it means not feeling hopeless or frustrated, it also means not feeling resentful of her (or her dad) when it isn't even her(his) fault in the first place.
I have to tell ya gang, so far? This has been a good week.