Monday, December 22, 2008

Damned if you do ...

Have you noticed how many things with children are about making decisions and you'll never know if you were right? You can't rewind and try the other way, so you never know if you made the right choice. And it's a fractal pattern (I love that phrase!) which means it repeats at all different scales, from the trivial to the most important.

The current musing is caused by Midget's sleeping. With Widget I made various decisions, and I won't say I regret them but I do wonder if I just made the situation worse. Midget is even more apalling than Widget was, and has just gone through several weeks of not sleeping unless she's sucking. No slings, no cuddles, no comfort suck for a while then let go, if it's not in her mouth she's awake (and it MUST be the real thing!!!!). We've been working on it and have got to the point where I can put her down for a nap which will last 20-40 minutes, then DH can hold her to extend it. He's actually quite happy with this, he missed his Daddy naps and has had more sleep than in the whole year. She will also let go after about midnight so has gone back to having a few distinct feeds and cuddle the rest of the time, rather than screaming if she lost the nipple. I can get her down for the first nap of the night, but about 20 minutes later that's it and I'm stuck there for several hours.

The other day I had a little decision - she was showing tired signs, so do I put her down at the first opportunity or try to keep her happy until she's really tired? She's a very light sleeper which is part of the problem - she wakes so easily and you have to go through the whole rigmarole again, or she decides that she's had a nap and is now awake. I know that being overtired makes it worse, but the 20 minute naps just mean she is tired and grumpy until the next nap. (She's generally a very happy little baby, she's getting enough sleep it's me who can't cope with having to hold her all the time.)

Then last night it was a big decision - I just got sick of it and tried to hold her for a while instead of having her suck. Big mistake! She screamed hysterically, and I don't mean crying I mean screaming, until she threw up. This is with someone holding, rocking and singing to her. So it looks like we will be going back to the softly softly approach. As DH said as we were calming her down in the lounge room, at least she's very forgiving.

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