Sweet Camden, my little six month love that still cherishes his middle of the night feedings. Yes, that was plural on purpose. To be honest, a part of me loves seeing his little face in the middle of the night too. He however no longer needs those middle of the night feedings.
Adam and I have processed the different approaches. Set a date that this is the week to make the shift. Initially, I was going to stay at my sisters when Adam and Camden weathered the cry it out method. Slight change of plan. We ended up settling on The Sleep Lady's Good Night Sleep Tight.
So here I sit, next to Camden's crib as we embark on day one of his sleep training regimen. It's nap time. He ate awhile ago (no more falling asleep nursing for him), I sang to him and put him down drowsy, which quickly turned to this- wide awake and bouncing as though his crib is more of a trampoline than a place to sleep.... Who knew the power of the springs on a baby mattress?!
I have been shooshing him, limiting eye contact and have a chair right at his bed side. He continues to wiggle and crawl right over the bars and stare at me. His pacifier has never seemed so interesting to him. He's covered literally every centimeter of his crib.
He will lay down for a second and then it's almost as though he instantly remembers he was supposed to be fighting the sleep- And boing up pops the baby to resume bouncing and babbling.
When discussing this plan with the pediatrician she emphasized consistency. One must be consistent and stick with it. Check, check, that I (we) can do! My only concern at this point is that my little dude has the dedication for this to last indefinitely and I will have to call a SOS of a friend to make my afternoon sessions.
This is not entirely about the sleep training though. It's about the need to release expectation and pressure. Each baby, animal, person is different and requires a different approach and tending to. Plans change. Visions change. Life is fluid and we are constantly in a state of needing to readjust.
How do we have grace with ourselves and acceptance for the choices we make? With intentionality, we know what is best for ourselves and our families. We are connected and aware. There is not one right way. There are a variety of different approaches for every decision in life. How do we trust ourself to make the decisions that are best suited for us? How do we support others in making the decisions that are best for them? How do we allow the differences to coexist with love and tolerance?
Camden eventually fell asleep. It took him 40 minutes. But he's sleeping. Day 1: I changed the imperatively consistent plan- I left his room before he was asleep. I stood up from the chair and let him be. I watched him from the camera. He continued to wiggle and babble. He fussed a little, started to cry, I went to his room put the pacifier in his mouth patted his back and he was out! He drifted right into a sweet slumber!
The SOS however was needed. Because waking a sleeping baby just did not seem feasible. Getting him to my friend/sitter was not in cards today. My beyond generous sister came over (with her one year old) and played while Camden slept (which only ended up being about a blinks worth of time post my departure). Sara and Sophie saved the day again!
We are the holder of our own answers. We first must ask ourselves the questions. Know our intentions. Be connected with our process. And most importantly, trust ourselves. Not because it's the right way but because it is the way that makes the most sense for ourself.