Friday, November 20, 2009

Crying It Out

Sam didn't quite cry for an hour before he fell asleep tonight. Almost, but not quite. It is so, so hard to make him just sit/lay/stand in his crib and cry! I never, ever thought I would have a hard time with it. I have never been really soft-hearted. I've always been more tough love-ish with kids, until I had my own. It's SO different. When he cries, my heart breaks. It's almost 2 a.m. and he just quit crying. He'd been at it since a little before 1 a.m., and this is an early night! Before you begin feeling too sorry for me, don't, because I can usually sleep as late as I want to, since I'm a stay-at-home mom and he is my only child. So, as long as he's sleeping, I can sleep. He goes to bed late, he sleeps late, hence I get to sleep late, which I love. So, what the real issue I'm discussing is that every night he wakes up and cries. Usually he cries 30 min. to an hour. We should have broken him of this long ago you're probably thinking, and the truth is, we did.

See, when he was first born, I was SO tired (bet you're surprised). Sam wanted to stay up every night until at least 3 a.m., and finally J and I had enough, and started putting him in his crib when he was tired, and making him "cry it out". It worked, and soon, he just went to sleep when we put him in his crib without much crying at all! :-) Then, we moved. Not only did we move, upsetting his routine, but we moved in with my parents. This home is a small 3 bedroom double-wide mobile home. My parents both work, and because I was afraid if we just let Sam cry it out it would keep my parents awake, and thus make us living with them a trial, I started putting him to sleep every night. I either rock or breastfeed him until he falls asleep every night. Yes, present tense. This is not actually the problem. Most of the time I enjoy putting my baby to sleep. The problem is that 8 times out of 10 he wakes up when his sweet little angelic face touches the crib sheet, and the crying begins. I used to take him out and rock him to sleep again every time this happened, but I finally had enough. Now, when he wakes up I just go ahead and leave the room. And he cries. Sometimes, he doesn't wake immediately. It'll be 15 minutes later or so, but it happens almost every night.

So, as he cries, I try to ignore it, but I worry. I worry that he feels like his parents don't love him, that we've abandoned him. I'm sure he cannot understand why we don't come to get him like we do when he cries from his crib during the day. I worry that because it's so dark, it scares him, so I leave on a little light. Then when he stops crying I worry that he's pulled the blanket over his head and he's suffocating. So, I go in to check on him, and about half the time that wakes him up again, and the crying commences. Sigh. He won't take a pacifier. He's stopped sucking his thumb. Staying in the room with him only makes it worse. I absolutely cannot take it when I am in the room with him. I have to distract myself with something else. So, that's my experience thus far with crying it out.

The blessings that I'm so thankful for today are: 1. That my husband finally got a job, even though it's temporary, it may turn into permanent, and the pay is better than unemployment! 2. That my husband was unemployed. I know, that sounds strange, but my husband had been unemployed almost since Sam was born, and he was SUCH a help! I do not know how I would have made it without him! Some weeks we didn't know how we were going to make it through, but God always blessed us, we made it, and none of our bills were ever late! 3. That we paid off our 4th credit card today since starting on "The Total Money Makeover" plan by Dave Ramsey. We are determined to turn our finances around and get out of debt and I'm so glad that we're getting it done!