Sunday, September 9, 2012

Transition

Miss A will be six months old next Friday.  Six months old seems to be an age at which everything is in transition, including the two biggies, eating and sleeping.

She is showing many signs of being ready to start solid food, including interest in the things that we are eating, shown by staring and reaching at our food and drink. I think I'll pick up some rice cereal tomorrow and just see what happens. Everything that I've read has reinforced that the first eating experiences should be fun and relaxed, so that's how we'll approach it!

The sleeping seems to be more complicated.  She is in a kind of limbo between two naps and three naps a day, so no two days recently have been the same.  And her naps affect the time that she goes to sleep at night, which affects the time that she wakes up in the morning, which affects the time that she has her first nap, etc. etc. etc.  I know that consistency will come eventually... right?

At the same time, I have been trying to help her fall asleep more independently.  It can be a frustrating process because I find myself unsure of when to go in and try to settle her, and when to leave her alone. And inevitably, I feel like I've made the wrong decision. Take this afternoon, for example.  We got home from church and she was showing all the signs of being tired.  Her eyes were red, she was rubbing her face in my shoulder and she was very quiet.  I put her down in her crib, swaddled her up, gave her her soother, kissed her on the forehead, said, "I love you, now go to sleep," and left the room.

She talked to herself for about 20 minutes, at which point I peeked in to see how she was doing. She was sideways in the crib, had removed the swaddle and had lost the soother.  I went in to get her resettled and she smiled her big goofy grin at me.  I put the swaddle away, lay her back in her normal position, gave her back the soother, kissed her on the forehead, said, "I love you, now go to sleep," and left the room.

She talked to herself for another 20 minutes, so I went to check on her again. She had wiggled herself around so much that she had pulled her diaper down and wet the bed. So I changed the diaper, covered the wet spot, lay her back in her normal position, kissed her on the forehead, said, "I LOVE YOU NOW GO TO SLEEP," and left the room.

She cried.

So I sat next to her crib, held the soother in her mouth and rubbed her little nose until she fell asleep, a full hour after I first put her in her crib.  Her little arms relaxed and she spit out the soother and finally, FINALLY, she drifted off to dreamland.  I left the room.

She woke up 15 minutes later.

@#$@

3 comments:

Shalom said...

It does, it does, it absolutely does get easier.

My now 22-month old daughter was an atrocious napper. Much like you're describing; work for 45 minutes to get her down, and she'd sleep for 20. And then I would cry. I really don't know what worked apart from consistency and (more importantly, I'm guessing), the passage of time.

Hang on, mama. It SO gets better.

Shalom said...

(and I don't blog at my old address anymore...but my current one is here: http://babyinterrupted.blogspot.com/)

Kathleen said...

Thanks, Shalom! We are working on falling asleep by herself and she is doing much better. One little thing at a time!

Glad to find you again!