I am officially starting a petition to get the phrase “sleeping like a baby” struck from the English language.
My girls are beautiful. Smart. Healthy. (Except for this week, in which the unstoppable, Vesuvian-like flow of thick, nasty mucus from Thalia’s nose has us considering just how much it will cost to build an ark.) The one thing my children have not been blessed with is the ability to sleep.
Thalia refused to nap anywhere but a swing, that battery-hungry beast, then forced us into reluctant co-sleeping for 11 months until finally I broke down, emotional and sleep-deprived and let her cry. It lasted an hour. The next night, about 20 minutes. If memory serves, on the third night she slept like…well, some other person’s baby.
I can now assure you close to two years later that she shows no signs of psychological damage, no fear of abandonment. Although she did run away, shave her hair into a mohawk and get a tattoo a couple weeks ago. But I attribute that more to allowing her to watch the Family Guy with us.
Sage, on the other hand, was a champion napper until a few weeks ago when she decided she’d far prefer to forage for dust bunnies and small, jagged hair clips under the couch in the afternoons than lie down in her crib. This wouldn’t be such a travesty if she weren’t also still waking up, on average, 2-4 times a night and yelling for a bottle.
Let me say that one more time for emphasis: After 10.5 months, she still wakes up 2-4 times a night. And cries. Loudly. She goes down, but won’t stay down. We shove a bottle in her mouth so that she won’t wake her sister right next to her. Which is of course the total wrong thing to do to get her to sleep through the night. We’ve traded a smart, long-term solution for a quick fix.
Every night for more than 300 nights.
And I am so so so freaking tired. (And, evidently, fat.) I can only imagine that Sage is tired too.
So this week it’s deja vu all over again, as we let her cry Monday at 2:45 AM without intervention. It lasted a half hour. We all lived. And then she slept the rest of the night.
Last night: Only one waking. We still gave her that bottle.
But tonight the kitchen closes at 7PM for the night. Wish us luck.
And as for you, the kind, helpful, supportive anonymous reader who commented on a post two years ago: You are a horrible,selfish person.I wont even call you a mother because even animals take better care of their young.Crying it out is child abuse.Most of us want children,not programmed robots.Get yourself sterilised.
I hope you’ll be back to offer me more of your thoughtful suggestions. Why, I’d hardly know how to parent without you.