Maybe I’m doing it wrong.
maybe I really don’t give a damn.
I’d say I waffle back and forth with Kellan’s habit (oh no! OMG. I said it! THE WORD) of nursing to sleep, but really, I don’t.
It’s not that he can’t or doesn’t fall asleep in the stroller, the car seat, the ergo, Tim’s arms, etc – because he does.
He just prefers the boob at night and really, WHO WOULDN’T?
Babies are designed that way…why else would this method be the most peaceful out of everything Tim and I have tried? If we were living in the wilderness and a screaming baby in the middle of the night would become a giveaway to our whereabouts to predators?
Let’s just say we’d win at the quiet game.
I’m still not sure I fully understand the rush or reasoning for everyone – at least here, in the States – to either try to convince you that early independence is the right thing, always, or for you to do whatever you can to have your own child figure it out on their own.
Everyone has their reasons for their own way of parenting and if you’re not getting enough sleep or feel like someone in the family is suffering due to babies in the bed, on the boob, then do what you need to do. I’m not judging you.
I’m just saying that, to most, we’re doing it wrong. We’re allowing this “bad habit” of cosleeping and nursing to sleep to continue…OMG. Kellan will never learn how to sleep/self-soothe/be independent/become a competent human being
Funny thing I’ve been noticing, though? Lately, when Kellan does wake up in the middle of a nap or at night, he doesn’t immediately begin frantically hunting for the boob with half closed eyes and an open mouth.
Yes, he still searches for the warmth of my body, but instead of always wanting to latch right on – and if latching doesn’t occur, he wakes up crying – he’s sometimes content with just rolling over and putting a hand on my chest, falling right back asleep within seconds.
He also kind of moves around in his sleep, hitting my torso with his head repeatedly like, “MOM. MOVE. You’re in my way.”
So I move…and he resettles himself back to sleep. All by himself.
I can now (sometimes) get up while he naps and he stays asleep…some days it is for upwards of an hour.
That, my friends? All of that, to me, shows growth and maturity and steps in the direction of eventually falling asleep on his own, in his own bed, and staying asleep, or being able to put himself back to sleep, on his own.
All without me leaving him alone in his crib to cry and wonder why I’m not coming.
(again, no judgement)
I’m not rushing him into doing all of those things rightnow.
Tim told me the other day that he was impressed at how patient I was with Kellan, especially since I am not patient AT ALL. WITH ANYTHING. EVER. It’s probably the one trait that I have always sucked the most at…I want it now. I want it to be done now. I want to know how to do it. Now. I want you to be perfect at it. Now. I want to be perfect at it. NOW.
This is probably why I am terrible at cooking. It really is unfortunate a potato doesn’t bake NOW and you can’t make a pie NOW…
All of this NOW has ruled my life…except when it comes to Kellan, apparently. I know that, had I applied my lack of patience with everything in life to raising Kellan, we would have done the cry-it-out thing ASAP. As soon as he was old enough.
Because my lack of patience would have had me wanting him to sleep on his own, in his crib, all night long, all by himself.
That’s the end goal, right? That’s the mark of a good parent…of good parenting skills…of a good sleeper…of “doing it right.”
For some unexplainable, other worldly reason, I have endless patience with Kellan.
It doesn’t matter how tired I am or how many times he wakes up at night or how ornery of a mood Kellan or I may be in (which is rare – for Kellan – but still). I’m still kind and loving and patient with him.
Seeing me like this with Kellan impressed Tim because to him, I’ve never been patient a day in my life.
(And I haven’t. I started walking at 9 months…I was sitting and crawling and saying words before that…I wanted to do it all NOW, even as a baby)
Tim’s recognition of my newfound patience made me feel good inside and also made me realize he was absolutely right.
So then I impressed myself.
I *can* be patient!
(I KNOW! IT’S A MIRACLE!)
But, back to whatever point I’m not really making…Kellan is almost six months old and still, he’s been “out” for less time than he’s been “in.” I’m not sure I blame him for wanting and needing to be close to me when he sleeps. I mean…he literally slept inside of me for ten months.
I’m not judging the cry-it-outers, because in the long run, we may have to try it. Who knows.
But for now, this is what works. This is what we’re doing.
Even though everything I keep reading says otherwise.