Thursday, November 10, 2011
Cry Me a River...
We were waiting until he was over the croup he had last week. We were waiting for a stretch of days when I would be home with him, so we wouldn't have to worry about inconsistency. Apparently we were also waiting for the worst night of sleep yet because this was the one that told me without a doubt that IT IS TIME.
This time around I'm using the advice of a friend's sister who has had amazing results with her own two kids. We let Em cry it out one night back in the day and she was a fantastic sleeper from then on. It was the hardest 30 minutes of my life, but I learned two things...
1. Babies don't die after crying for 30 minutes.
2. I can finish an entire bottle of wine in a half hour on my own.
We're starting with days instead of nights. Jacob began getting cranky at 8:30 and had droopy eyes while I carried him to his crib. I set him down and he began wailing. I went in after 10 minutes to soothe him then set him down again once he was calm. I've repeated this several times and each time I keep thinking he will pass out. HE CAN'T STAY AWAKE FOREVER, RIGHT?!?
My internal dialogue isn't helping...
Heart: How could you do this to your baby!?
Head: I'm teaching him how to put himself to sleep.
Heart: CPS is going to knock on your door any moment now.
Head: I'm doing this because I love him. He needs this skill.
Heart: Do you feel that nagging urge to help your crying baby? That's a natural instinct. It's there for a reason.
Head: We'll all be happier. He'll be a happier baby if he's more rested. I'll be a better mommy.
Heart: You're a terrible mommy. Attachment parents across the globe are weeping for your child right now. He'll have abandonment issues his entire life.
Head: Bullshit. One morning of crying does not equal lifetime trauma... Wait... Does it?
Right about then I poured a shot of Pendleton Whiskey in my coffee. I'm not a huge whiskey fan, but we were out of Bailey's. So, now I'm a 9 a.m. drinker. Awesome.
He's still crying. We're going on almost TWO HOURS of this. I pick him up and he immediately calms and begins to fall asleep. I set him back down and he starts screaming before he hits the mattress. I set the timer for 10 minutes and try to distract myself while he loses his mind in there. I reset the clock if he calms even for a minute. I'm doing the right thing. I'm doing the right thing. I'm doing the right thing.
Emily wants to know why I won't help him. I explained how this works and why it's so important as if this is a developmentally appropriate conversation to have with a 3 year old. "Do you understand, Honey? Do you think this is a good idea?"
"Yes... And I think we need to get a cat." Right. I'm finding absurd things to do to fill 10-minute crying sessions. I polished my toe nails blue. I bleached the bathroom sinks. I'm blogging. Next I plan on looking at cats on the Humane Society website. We'll name him Ferber. Or Pendleton. He'll be fantastic and all he will do all day long is SLEEP. Good kitty.