For the first four months of her life, out daughter was one of those super sleepers that new parents dream about — or at least WE dreamed about!
(Our son was up every 2 hrs for a llooooong time. I was never so exhausted in my life! When C. was born and she was a sleeping champ, we were like “OMG, thank u lord!”).
C. would sleep at night for 6-8 hours and then was up off and on from 5 a.m. til 7 a.m. (I don’t want to hear it if your babe slept even better than this! ). Unbelievable to us — a breast-fed babe sleeping so long…and gaining weight!
Well, then something changed. Brian went away for a service trip with the teenagers from church, and my girl was UP! I went through the usual mama questions that often have no answer to them! Is it the binky? Is she sick? Does she miss Bri or sense me missing him? Is she teething? And then we were traveling. Uh-oh. She was waking up every two hours. OMG.
Now we are home and though she is sleeping better, now when she wakes at night, she is awake! I feed her some times, but other times, she’s just not hungry. She. wants. the. binky!
So Brian and I had the “if and when and how to get rid of the binky” conversation that so many parents know all to well!
Yeah, I know, having an infant = being tired. So I accept some exhaustion. But there comes a time when mom’s had enough — and that means some things gotta change. AND I also know that she’s gotta learn how to fall back to sleep on her own — eventually.
I’m sure we’ll figure it out. I’m not in to C. “crying it out.” I gotta talk to my mama friends and check in with my own gut and husband (!) and then try something out.
I think what stresses me out more than the binky battle, though, is this anxiety many moms, including me, seem to have these days:
If I do X will this create a bad habit that’ll be hell to deal with later (binky, co-sleeping…you name it)? And if I do Y will that ruin my child (cry-it-out, etc)?
Mom guilt + knowing too much about attachment and trauma as a psychotherapist = paranoid…at times!So I often just have to take a step back, breathe, go with my gut, try something out, and believe that in the end, all will be well.
mindfulness + faith = letting go = contentment.
Yet the fears associated with being a parent can be pretty tough illusions to battle! Lots of breathing and lots of other mamas are necessary for survival!