Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Let it go

This season of life has proved to be one of my favorites. Everything about what I get to do everyday just makes my heart swell up with happiness.
It wasn't always this way.
in fact, i wanted my mom more than anything for a long time.
Don't get me wrong, I adored staying home with Lux from day one. It just wasn't always easy.

The first couple months especially. I was trying to get Lux to follow a sleep schedule, eating schedule, etc. She cried, I stressed, she'd sleep while nursing, i'd freak out and think she's gonna have to be nursed to sleep til she's in college. 
All the books discourage nursing babies to sleep.
I tried sleep training with the advice of others.
Lux wouldn't have any of it. 
While it worked for many, it didn't work for us.
She woke up twice a night at the least, for 6 months
Books also say not to let the baby sleep with you.
Ah, well, i broke that rule.
and i loved every second of it.
They say to let babies cry to sleep...
hated that.
I picked her up.

Finally, I just let it all go.
Let go of the books, the advice, the obsessive online research i was doing to make her sleep.
I just quite relying on all those sources and decided i just wanted to stop stressing out and enjoy her.
if she didn't want to sleep, i wasn't gonna make her.
if she woke up at night, i'd pick her up, feed her, snuggle her, put her back to sleep.
I didn't want to do whatever everyone else said to do.
 If the only way to help her nap was to lay down and take one with her, thats what i did.
I just followed my instinct as a mom and decided what I was gonna do with my child.
My little girl isn't every other child in the country that books talk about. 

And after I let all that go...
I started to enjoy her in a whole other way.
I didn't stressed over her not sleeping at a certain time.
I let her just, well, be her.
and when she was ready to sleep, then great!
I took naps with her, snuggled on the couch a few times a day while she took short naps.
I stared at her chubby cheek pressed up against my chest as she took heavy breaths and her eyes fluttered.
I held her hand and enjoyed the beauty of her as she slept on me.
and I enjoyed her. 
When I didn't stressed over her sleep, it totally lifted the heavy burden of thoughts that'd flood my mind,
"What am i doing wrong?"
"What's wrong with my baby that she won't sleep?"
"How is it that every other baby I know is sleeping through the night?"

I stopped doubting myself as a mom.
I embraced her alertness and got used to her being awake more than asleep.
I did chores around the house while wearing my baby.
I placed her in a bouncer/swing/excersaucer/walker in the room that I was working in.
Eventually, things changed.
But on her time, not mine.
I realized what an energizer bunny I have and I'm so totally more than thrilled with her.
I cherish that I realized early on to just let go of what everyone else was saying and to enjoy her no matter what she was doing, sleeping, playing, eating, etc.

That was 5 months ago. 
She now sleeps through the night.(and yes, i let her cry it out, but waited til she was older 6.5 months).
She takes great morning naps and afternoon naps.
She can sleep anywhere at all, no matter how loud the place is (a Jr. high basketball game was the loudest place that she napped at...buzzers, whistles, shouting, and clapping were all present!)
She's doing wonderfully with sleep.

Now, to be fair, the baby books have worked for so many of my friends.
In fact, if it's something that you want to try, then go for it!
But know that it doesn't work for everyone, and it's okay.
Even when you follow it to the tee.
You aren't failing as a parent if your baby isn't sleeping through the night at a month old.
Or even at 12 weeks (which is what I was told many times).
You're doing fine and you know your baby.

It's okay to just enjoy and snuggle my baby while their sleeping.
It's okay not to do what everyone else with babies are doing.
It's great to embrace my time with her this little...because we can't ever go backwards in time.
It's not okay to stress out and wonder whats wrong with my child.
Because, in the end, she isn't every other baby that statistics or books talk about.
She's mine.
and I know her:).

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