Monday, May 18, 2009

Blessed Sleep

I've created a monster. Well, two monsters to be exact. Here at our place, we have some bed time bad times. I wish I could say that our only bed time problems were 100 rounds of "Can I have a glass of water?" or "I have to go to the bathroom again." But no, they're a bit more severe.

So...I call myself an attachment parent-er (I don't think that's a real word), but really, I lack commitment. I LOVE the feel of a tiny newborn snuggled up to me in our bed, nursing peacefully to sleep. And (for the record) I have felt myself called to this kind of mothering.

We ALL sleep really well this way for the first ten months or so. Then the honeymoon wears off. All the sudden, that sweet little newborn turns into a prowling lion, pouncing on his prey and exploring the savannah of our bed in the middle of the night. Seriously. Plus, they take up A LOT more room than they used too. And then I start to think I was CRAZY for letting them sleep there in the first place.

So now, I have two recovering attachment sleepers trying to encounter the world of sleeping alone. Not successfully, as a matter of fact. They sleep in their own beds, but bedtime is a looooooonnnnnnngggggg process. I used to lay with them to go to sleep. An hour and a half would pass and John Paul would finally drift off and Joey would finally sing himself to sleep. An hour and a half!?! These kids are supposed to be tired! Not so. I'm gradually getting myself out of the room...first at the foot of the bed, now on the floor. John Paul is nearly four years old for goodness sake!

Ever so stealthily, I'll work my way to the door. But Joey has a set of lungs that just won't quit and if he even has a hunch that I'm headed out, he'll let us and every neighbor within a three mile radius that his needs aren't being met. So tonight, I'll sit by the closet and meet those beautiful little needs, praying that I don't scar his little soul by saying "So help me, if you utter one more word, I will call your Daddy in here and he will mail you to China! TO CHINA, DO YOU HEAR ME?!?!?!"

Hopefully Our Lady will sit next to me, reminding me that although these nights seem long, too soon they'll pass and I won't be able to keep these kids from sleeping! And then, I'll go to my own bed, and snuggle my little newborn Maria in next to me, because some lessons are hard to learn. :)


  1. We're attachment parents, but my last baby was the worst. He didn't make it into a crib sleeping through the night until 15 months old. I promise, this too shall pass. My first piece of advice is go slowly. Try putting the crib next to the bed as a side car to allow her some room of her own. And when she's closer to a year old.

    Once she's a year old, there's a great article by Dr. Jay Gordon (a proponent of attachment parenting) who has written a great article on getting babies to sleep through the night. You can read it here:

    Good luck, Mama. And of course you know (since this isn't your first go-round) that this too shall pass. And all too soon!

  2. hi we had a similar pattern imerge but i put the 2 youngest in the same room i read a story give them both a kiss and a cuddle play a little music and about 15 minutes later they go too sleep i just bit the bullett and went for it but i feel as long as they go to there own bed and i have a few hours sleep head start i dont mind them joining us and feel that it will be something that we will grow out of naturally i love your blog by the way : )

  3. Oh, Krissy! I have sat through that 1 1/2 hours in a room just waiting for a little boy to go to sleep. That is a lllloooooonnngggg 90 minutes, isn't it??? Blaise acted like it sounds like Joey is. (Did you tell me once that he's a sensitive child or a melancholic or something? All I know is that he sounds like Blaise in several ways, though I haven't seen a strong will from him like Blaise has/had.) I thought I would never get out of the room before 1 1/2 hours were up. Then one week, the boys were at my parents' house, and Blaise just decided he would go to sleep all by himself without my mom in the room and came back home able to fall asleep by himself! My mom must have the magic touch! And you know what? He was 2 1/2, almost on the dot! Hopefully Joey will take after him in that regard! Maybe he should spend his half birthday with one of your parents?! :) And hopefully John Paul will get it easily too. But you're right... this too will pass, for all your kids. Can you imagine a 16 year old boy needing his mom to sit in the room for 1 1/2 hours until he falls asleep??? That image cracks me up!