Thursday, July 15, 2010

It's been hard

We have been doing 11 days of sleep training. These have been very very trying 11 days. Maddy is no closer to soothing herself to sleep. And she's tired. And she's grumpy. And whiny. And this bad mood is almost constant. This bad mood? It's been hard on me.

Yesterday was better, today has been ok because baba came for a few hours to take care of Maddy while I went on errands. Tuesday? Tuesday was hard. The hardest day to date. Maddy was inconsolable. I became inconsolable... Neil was so worried about me he spoke to my mom who gave me the break this afternoon. I was so worried about me that I would have sought a doctor if that mood continued.

Today? I finally gave in. I went in when she was crying and held her in my arms. We talked a bit, she smiled. I held her in my arms and watched her deep breaths as she held my finger. She wasn't fully asleep when I laid her down in her crib again. She sighed and snuggled into the mattress and went to sleep. My daughter is more stubborn than I am. My FIVE month old daughter. I am scared for the teenage years. But having done that I feel better. I am able to talk to my husband again. I can write. I can smile in the evening.

I am not saying I don't believe in CIO/ferberizing. I am not saying we won't do it again. I am saying once more, I think that Maddy isn't ready for it. And her certain her mom isn't either. And we still have huge sleep issues to overcome. The lack of napping and resultant grumping. And the evening grumps. If anyone has any suggestions...?

Next week we have our 6 month immunization. Almost 6 months old. How is this possible? Time is flying by at a crazy pace. "They" say the evening grumps go away at 6 months... Heh. I'll believe that when I see it.

Also? Today Maddy was playing on the floor, on her belly. In a fit of grumping she lifted her belly off the ground and balanced on her hands and knees... just for a few seconds but... aack!


  1. Soooooo hard, I know! Sleep is one of the trickiest things of being a parent, and EVERYONE (and their dog!) is happy to give you advice about it.

    And so, since you solicited advice, here I go! *lol*

    Regarding naps: have you thought about getting a swing that has a higher weight limit? My friend still puts her 10 month old to sleep in a swing, and he's almost 25 lbs... I know it's not much help in the long term, but it would give you a break right now. And when she's older, she may be more willing to nap once she's realized sleep is not the enemy... I can find out which one she bought if you want me to - I think it's available at Wal-mart and it plugs-in too, so no more battery wasting!

    As for the night sleeps and CIO... When I put the Bebbeh to bed I'm there for at least 30 minutes, usually closer to 45 minutes. The longest it's ever taken to put her to bed is 90 minutes. It does take up a significant chunk of my evening, which I would love to be spending with Hubby and not a fussy baby. And yes she cries, but she cries when I'm there with her which makes a difference to me. I'm happy to do it, because I practise attachment parenting. We can definitely talk about it more next time we hang out, but it seems like what you're currently doing is really hard on both you and Maddy. Maybe just doing what seems to feel natural to you (holding her until she falls asleep, being there with her) is what you need to do. Maybe by approaching bedtime in this way, she will sleep longer stretches at night because she will have more confidence that Mommy will be there when she really needs her (i.e. when she starts to cry). In the end, when I am feeling frustrated and wanting to run out of the room and pretend I'm no longer a parent (yes, we've all been there!), I remind myself that this period in her life is so very short compared to the rest of our lives together. I can do this for a while longer. I can do this for her. After all, isn't that what maternity leave is for? To let us focus on our precious little ones, and help them grow into wonderful, confident, happy little people? That's how I look at it. And for me, all of it is about managing MY expectations. So I just expect to be in her bedroom for about an hour to put her to bed. I expect her to wake at night to feed. I expect that she will cry and I will not be able to calm her, but at least I will try. And that makes it all a little easier on ME.

    I am sorry you are feeling emotionally fragile. Just know that it is normal. And one of my favorite mantras, that I say all the time is golden: this too shall pass.


  2. Holy HECK! I wrote a HUGE comment for you, and now it's all lost. Buggery piss. I will just talk to you in person another day...

    Hugs, I'm here for you!

  3. Oh, there it is! Now you will have THREE comments all by moi on this post! Doh!

  4. Yay! Three comments! Who cares if they are from one person :)

    Regarding the swing, Madds was already not interested in napping the swing when she outgrew it. We could have cut the head piece out (that was the issue) to make her fit but we didn't bother. The things hanging above her and the mirror were eye catching and she'd go from drowsy to awake once she saw that.

    And our bedtime routine takes 30-45 minutes (there are many stages and steps!) and I love that time with her. The issue was that she'd wake every 30 minutes after being put down and take about 20 minutes to lure to sleep and then up 30 minutes later... for 4-5 hours. THAT I can't do every night. With a non-napper I just would never ever have a moment to myself and a chance to get anything in the house done. I am ok with going back once or twice but not all night.

    Ah! The joys of parenting!! :)