I am tired and want nothing more than to put my feet up, eat dinner, and enjoy some smooth Bailey’s Irish Cream. The day’s highlight? I was asked for ID when I bought the Bailey’s at the liquor store! Other than that happy moment, it’s been a long and tiring day. There’s nothing like having to work on a beautiful sunny Saturday instead of joining your hubby and son for an enjoyable day at the market and bookstore.
It’s 9:37 pm. I should be realxing to the sounds of peaceful nothingness. Or maybe just the sounds of Jack cooking dinner. And soft lullabies coming from the CD player in the nursery. But instead, Sam is in his jumper just four feet away fom me. He’s jumping up and down furiously, taking full advantage of this last push of energy for the day. The noise of the attached toys and especially the springs seems to grow louder and louder. Now it’s 9:43. Wow! He’s really getting some air between his toes and the floor!
I suppose that some might insist that I’m too lenient, I’m allowing bad habits, or that I’m not showing him who is in control. He’s 10 months old; of course he’s in control. Although perhaps “control” is not the right word. As a young whippersnapper, I always resisted the idea of being controlled myself, and I don’t feel any great need to “control” Sam. Plenty of advice givers from the great pool of *They* would advise me to put Sam in his crib and let him “cry it out” to sleep. It’s 9:48. He doesn’t seem to be slowing down.
So my options are 1) Place Sam, who is wide awake and full of energy, into his crib and his energy will drain from screaming. Granted, perhaps it is our fault that he is wide awake. Scheduling for the day was off, bath-time got started very late, etc. I suppose sleep-training proponents might argue that there wouldn’t be any screaming because by 10 months old, Sam would know better than to pointlessly scream. Oh wait, but he would still be filled with unspent energy then, wouldn’t he?
He paused in his jumping…it’s 9:54. Maybe he’s done… nope, there he goes again, still jumping.
Option 2) Place Sam in his jumper. He’s happy. He’s using up that energy. He’s tiring himself out. Sure, the noise from the springs is loud and annoying, but not nearly as awful to listen to as screaming and crying would be. Once he’s done jumping, I’ll give him some more milk, put him to bed, turn those soft lullabies on, and most likely he’ll fall asleep before long. This option seems like a win-win situation for tonight. Then tomorrow I’ll try to do a better job of physical play and meals and evening scheduling, etc.
With such a choice analysis, I’m not sure why I would even consider option #1 cry in crib. Except of course that that is what *they* say I should be doing. (There’s always a faceless, anonymous They to be telling you what you ought to be doing). At least I’m fortunate enough to have some friends who also eschew the Ferber sleep training method. I have to say though, when I first heard about it Sam was only maybe 6 weeks old. I was informed by a friend to start sleep training at 3 months. I thought I would, because I thought that was what you did. It sounded like a good idea; make bedtime a smooth and quiet affair. My husband, Jack, was the one to refuse Ferber methods right from the start, saying that we could still have a happy baby that would sleep at night even without being trained. I’m glad he did. We’ve definitely seen our share of some difficult nights. And as I write that, I think to myself that “difficult” is an understatement. There were a few nights that I wondered if I would have to resort to letting Sam cry it out. But those aren’t common. For the most part, Sam’s bedtime is very pleasant for all involved.
It’s 10:07. He’s definitely slowing down. Now I can feed him and hopefully he’ll sleep. Then I can proofread this blog, publish it, and maybe figure out how I can get spammers to stop showing up in my site stats. Oh yeah- and grab a glass, pour a drink, and savor some smooth and sweet Baileys Irish Cream.