One week ago today, I sat in this very same place (smack dab in the middle of our couch because for whatever reason, I enjoy sinking down into the space between the two cushions on either side of me) and I talked about how it sounded like Abigail was being tortured in the other room (read “Letting her ‘Cry it Out’ (Sleep Training)” here). Those nap refusal sounds came directly after a night where I listened to her cry for at least 20 minutes as I held myself back and told myself that it was for the best.
And you know what? It was.
I don’t want to get too used to all this sleep I’ve been getting (and I think 7x7xDaddy would agree), but I think it’s safe to say that so far “sleep training” is working! (of course, now I’m afraid that since I’m verbalizing this and sharing it with all of you, Abigail will wake up from her nap and start crying “maaamaaa”)
I wanted to share this update because I will be the first to admit the following:
1. listening to your baby cry is quite possibly the hardest thing about parenting when all you want to do is console them and make them happy
2. grabbing your baby in the middle of the night and bringing them into bed when you know they’ll fall asleep the second they’re next to you is easy
3. as parents, I think we lie to ourselves sometimes and make excuses because we’re not ready to make a change (ie: she “NEEDS” us right now; she just wants to snuggle with Mommy and Daddy; she misses us; etc…)
4. I have a sneaking suspicion that those first two days were much more difficult on us as parents than on Abby
I know some parents worry about letting their kids cry it out because they’re afraid their babies will be emotionally scarred. I think subconsciously that was one of the reasons we didn’t want her to go through this. Then we realized something.
She doesn’t feel any less loved, or safe, or secure. She’s actually been happier, more energetic, and quite simply, extremely well rested.
Knock on wood, but since that first night of letting her cry it out, she’s slept consistently through the night without a peep from 8:oopm – 7:00am…EVERY night. More than that, she’s been going down for her naps like a champ. She’s cried before 3 of them (out of 14 naps) for at least 10 minutes, but other than that she’s gone down without any hesitation (or fighting).
We haven’t had this much consistency (or rest) in a few months. That being said, we’re going to stick with our new routine (which I need to update you all about as well) and hope it continues to be a success.
I know different things work for different parents and babies as every parent and baby is different, but I just have to say that this is definitely working for us…and I’m so proud that we finally had the strength to go through those tough crying sessions because the outcome has been well worth it.
Have a great day!