Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Clean Sweep!

So, now that the musical I was doing costumes for is over I have a pretty ambitious to-do list for the next 10 days:

1. Clean this apartment - and I mean DEEP clean it. Scrub things, move furniture, wash curtains. Like...Spring cleaning only in August 'cuz I didn't do it in the Spring. Also...sorting, organizing, and PURGING all of our STUFF! Town wide garage sale - here we come!

2. Help clean out my husband's childhood bedroom.

3. Reorganize the community theater's costume closet so we can fit everything back in neatly at the end of the season. Oh, and wash and put away all the costumes I used.

10 days??? Ha...I know I am crazy. I know it won't all get done. Especially now that I am at the end of day two of trying my best at  #1 and I have a CORNER of my kitchen done. Yes, one corner. 
 (I still have real-life-normal-everyday-stuff to do like....baby, grocery shopping, watching kids, and so on...)
I am keep my goal of August 10th though...I need to keep motivated and that is my husband's birthday. I have to do all of this NOW while he is on summer break and isn't working his normal hours. When September comes it will be so nice to have this place under control and no big projects looming over me. :) Some girls dream of diamonds...I dream of knowing where everything is in my house and having most of it labeled. Sigh.

Here's what is slowing me down...this place NEEDS the cleaning and I am also simplifying as I go. Goodbye decorative coffee mug and vase...I need to put baby bottles there.
Goodbye clutter from a space that could be used to get more stuff off my counters!
Into the trash all food that I don't want to eat (junk) but have felt guilty for getting rid of up 'till now!
Move this here, try this there, wash, dust, get rid of it!
(Shhh...this is really fun for me. I think that makes me a huge nerd.)

Tomorrow we start to tackle #2. Husband's childhood bedroom...time to box it up, display it, sell it, or trash it, Honey!

(I am posting this mostly to hold myself accountable. On August 10th, I'll post an update of how I did!)

UPDATE! Ha. ha. ha. We did finish JJ's bedroom by the 10th and we gave a ton of stuff to a local church to sell in their lawn sale. I finished the costume closet on the 12th...the day the last show wrapped. A little touch up when all the show laundry is returned and it will be closed up till spring. As far as our apartment...I cleaned the kitchen. :)

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Because He first loved us.

It’s not hard to decide what you want your life to be about.  What’s hard is figuring out what you are willing to give up in order to do the things you really care about.” Shauna Niequist

I knew becoming a mother would be a change. A big change. I knew I wanted to prioritize. Make time for this new little person entering our world. I knew I would be his sole source of food for 6 months and his main source for another 6 after that. I knew babies took time. I knew they took your sleep. I knew life would be different.

And yet...I had no idea.

Preparing for him, I gave up directing the musical at my school. I made that decision before I even knew we were expecting. We just knew we wanted a child and that removing that stress from my life and our marriage was probably a good first step. It was a fairly easy change especially because I did get pregnant and spent all of musical season on the couch in the throngs of my first trimester.

When we were expecting, we talked a lot about my maternity leave.  We had discussed me staying home with children before we were even engaged so it was no surprise to me when we easily agreed I should take the maximum about of time allowed. It was scary to think about my life without teaching and I even blogged about my last day. Such a huge transition was a big decision but I was happy and content as I knew it was what we wanted for our family.

I have always helped with my husband's musical at his school. This year (with baby on hip) was no exception but we often looked at each other and knew that next year with Noah being then 1 1/2 I wouldn't be able to help. With rehearsals far away and a toddler it seems my role there will be cut down to almost nothing in the future. My husband has enlisted new help to do what I used to. This is a sad reality as I have always loved helping him create his shows. I will have to simply help him by caring for his son, his home, and his belly. 

Before Noah arrived I had agreed to manage the costumes for TMP's (our local community theater) two summer productions. After Noah arrived and I realized how much extra time and energy I didn't have. I backed out and asked if I could possibly only do one of the productions. It amazes me now that I ever thought doing both would be possible. It has been a struggle to manage this household and help Noah through all his changes just working on one show! The no dinner nights, the baby hand offs (my husband music directs the other show right after I finish with costumes), the messy house, the cranky baby, the phone calls of distress, they have all lead me to believe I really should not commit myself to any future productions. Until Noah is...oh, I don't know....6? 10? 25?

The two weeks before my sister's wedding I wanted to dedicate as much time as I could to her and helping at the house. This pretty much destroyed our apartment and I burned the candles at so many ends I ended up sick afterwards. (I wouldn't take this back and it was a short term - once in a lifetime thing - that I do not regret. It still shocked me how run down I became doing what I had done many times pre-baby with no problem.)

So all this leads me to my question...how much do I have to give? How much of my old life gets put away (for now)? How much do I have to stop doing? Can I commit to anything outside of house and home without the whole thing falling apart? Not to sound cliche but sometimes it does feel like I am losing myself. If I don't teach and I don't do musicals and I can't power through a family wedding with gusto then well...who am I?

I am new. I am a new creation. The process is slow and the learning curve is steep but it is happening.
I no longer live for myself. I no longer can give to students, schools, or productions what I once did.
I have a new job life: Mom.
How much do I have to give? I have to give it all.
I have to give when there are no thanks. I have to give when there are no smiles. I have to work for no money and and take no holidays. I have to drastically change my to-do list and let someone else do theater. Love is not about making sure I have plenty of "me time" or seeking approval from the outside world (the world rarely gives approval anyway).
*Love is sacrificial commitment to the good of the other.
And it is a sacrifice but it is required.

We love because He first loved us.
We give all we can because He gave it all.
We die in small ways for others because He paid the ultimate price for us.

Motherhood is not a hobby, it is a calling. You do not collect children because you find them cuter than stamps.  It is not something to do if you can squeeze time in.  It is what God gave you time for.” -Rachel Jankovic

*Definition of love from Timothy Keller's book The Meaning of Marriage

9 upates at 9 months

Our baby boy is 9 months old! Wow! It is true what they say...it goes so fast. Our crazy summer lives have made this post several days late.

1. We are moving! Noah's "crawling" isn't proper crawling at all but the boy is on the move. He army crawls all around our apartment and I am trying to keep up with cleaning and baby proofing his path! He also is really working on pulling himself up to standing....he has done this already but only on rare occasions. Plus he kicks and squirms and dives all about! He is really good at sitting himself up after being on his belly and we have seen some glimpses of "proper" crawling on the way.

2. We are sleeping! We are night weened and sleeping 11 hours each night. Thank the Lord, The Sleepeasy Solution, and my husband for that. Every night is not perfect but we are all getting a lot more sleep.

3. We are eating! Eating a lot of baby food and baby snacks. Noah is nursing and eating more during the day now that he is not eating at all at night. He loves bananas and banana flavored "puffs". We have tried small bites of some "real food" as well. We have a hunch that "nana" may be Noah's "word" for wanting food...we will see in the coming weeks.

4. We are reading, and reading, and reading, and reading. The same books over and over. Our son loves Eric Carle. I didn't know it was possible for a 9 month old to have a favorite author but he does! Noah is great at turning pages and often demands books several times a day and several readings in each sitting. There are worse things.

5.We are clingy. Noah is a bit on the clingy side lately. It may be the night weening and sleep training we did. It may be that I left him for a whole night and most of the next day (He is now very suspicious of both his Grandma's houses) and also have been busy with the summer show which takes me away from him for a few hours a few nights a week.

6. Noah makes all kinds of noises and is getting good at letting us know what he wants. He is also getting good at throwing things he doesn't want and throwing little fits when he doesn't get his way. He has also mastered the art of going after the one item on the floor/table/couch that knows full well he is NOT supposed to have. Such sought after items include: the remote, cell phone, keys, land line phone, anything Mommy is using to eat or drink out of.

7. Besides reading Noah enjoys water (pools and baths), being outside, animals, music (but not musicals), and eating.

8. This month we had a family wedding and Noah met his 3 long distance second cousins who were all born this year as well. He also gained an Uncle. We really enjoyed spending time with Owen, Emmett, and Forrest. He also has been enjoying Daddy time during the day.

9. Apparently, Noah has the biggest head of any baby his age. Ever.

Love our boy SO much! Happy nine months sprout! 

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Goodnight Moon

Noah's Book Club: July 2012

Title: Goodnight Moon
An old classic.

Author: Margaret Wise Brown
Illustrator: Clement Hurd

Why Noah Picked It: The month of July was a tough one for me. Mom and Dad decided it was time for me to learn to fall asleep on my own. I really don't have a lot of fond memories from that time in my life except that they started to read me this book to me each and every night. I knew the time for sleep had come when they pulled out this book and yes...I cried through it many time because I knew the pack and play was next on their list but now...I love it. It is a comforting and familiar end to each and every day. I like to point at things in "the great green room". Goodnight book club. 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Diary of a Sleep Training Parent: The End.

Wednesday Night: The End.

Tonight marks the third night of Noah going to sleep very quickly on his own. He sleeps 11 hours each night. He is night weaned. I would call the whole thing a success except for naps and the fact that he is rather upset through most of the bedtime routine. So, I will call is a somewhat success and be grateful for the increase in nighttime sleep for everyone in this little family. Since we've seen little change in the past three days I am wrapping up this little blog-a-thon.

What have we been reminded of along this journey?
Parenting is hard. Summer is hot. Change is sometimes necessary yet painful. Not everyone will agree with your decisions. We love our baby very much and he is growing very fast. God is good.  

The End.

(last in a series)

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Diary of a Sleep Training Parent: Joys!

Tuesday Night: Joys!

After the hour long scream-a-thon that was Noah's morning nap I was about ready to throw in the towel.

However, two joys to share that have lifted my spirit a bit:
1. Noah's afternoon nap was a success. He cried but did eventually put himself to sleep and napped in his pack and play for about 45 minutes. That hasn't happened since last Tuesday.
2. Tonight is the second night in a row of Noah falling asleep almost instantly at bedtime.

Those are both very encouraging!

(14th in a series)

Diary of a Sleep Training Parent: Going Rogue

Monday: Going Rogue

This morning I had the brainiac idea that Noah would nap if he thought we all were napping.

This simply resulted in JJ and I being trapped in our bed for an hour listening to Noah scream.

(13 in a series)

Monday, July 16, 2012

Diary of a Sleep Training Parent: Sleep Tight

Monday Night: Sleep Tight 

Last night (#6)- again no night feedings, Noah slept his 11 hours :)
Today (#6)- napped twice in the car and screamed through out attempt at a 3rd nap :(
Tonight (#7)- after a heroic effort by a friend of ours to keep Noah awake until bed time, a bath filled with tears, and 4 story books, Noah conked out almost immediately :/

Feeling good about the night time sleep. Feeling bad that Noah screams through the bedtime routine because he doesn't want to go to sleep. Feeling terrible and dreading every single nap (unless we are in the car).

Happy One Week!

(#12 of a series)

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Diary of a Sleep Training Parent: Seriously?

Sunday: Seriously?

I was not prepared for this to be such a roller coaster. One night bedtime will go awesome...the next it will go terribly. Last night (night 5) was rough. Noah was up on and off a lot. However, he always got himself back to sleep and I didn't nurse him at all. He woke up around 7:30 am ready to eat!

Today is Sunday so naps went well because we were in the car a lot. He napped on the way to church, on the way to the store, and on the way home. No screaming naps in his pack and play. It was nice.

So far night 6 is not going well. He screamed through his bath and got very upset when we finished the last book. It has been about a half hour and he is still awake in the bedroom. I am starting to get worn out and I am tired of hearing my baby cry. The fact that Noah is night weaned is incredible, the fact that once he falls asleep he sleeps for long stretches is tremendous, but I thought the first night would be the worst and every night after that would get a little better. This has not been the case for us.

I start to wonder if we are doing something wrong. We are trying so very hard to be consistent. I was going to have one of our Moms watch him tomorrow night and do bedtime. Not happening after tonight...I can't ask anyone else to do this right now. It is bad enough we are teaching him that he has to fall asleep alone...I can't ask him to do that knowing we aren't near by.

My brain is a tug-of-war about what is best for Noah. 
Seriously? Being a parent is tough stuff. 

(11th in a series)

Diary of a Sleep Training Parent: Night 5

 Saturday: Night 5

Sooooo...night 5 is not going so well. Isn't it supposed to get better each night?
Noah has been up on and off since 8:00. He hasn't really been crying just making enough noise to let us know he is awake...we are not supposed to go check in on him if he is doing this whining kind of behavior. It makes us both so sad tonight. After visiting with babies all day we just want to go and hold and cuddle our little boy!

(10th in a series)

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Diary of a Sleep Training Parent: The Nightmare on Nap Street

Saturday: The Nightmare on Nap Street

Day 4 brings more attempts at Noah going to sleep independently for naps. Currently he is trying his 8th nap with the new routine. I say "trying" because he is crying and part of my Mommy gut says he is going to cry his way right through this nap hour....just like the first 7.

We have until Tuesday to see improvement...there are a lot of naps between now and then (Oh Lord, maybe as many as 11). We are trying different nap times to try and find the right fit for him. We have tried everything from 2 hours after he wake up to 3 1/2 hours after he wakes. We wait for "sleep cues" and continue to try and put him down when he seems to need to nap (This deviates slightly from The Sleepeasy Solution). It is crazy how well he is doing at night compared to how awful he is doing with naps. I really don't understand it.

On the upside! Night 4 (last night) went well...Noah fell right to sleep and had a few minor little wake ups throughout the night. We didn't hear him at all between 1:00 am and 7:30 am. This is so.much.better than a week ago when I would be up with him 4 or 5 times and sometimes for as long as an hour during those hours.

(9th in a series)

Friday, July 13, 2012

Diary of a Sleep Training Parent: TGIF

Friday: TGIF

1. Last night (#3) went well. He slept about 12 hours with 2 minor and one longer (25/30 minutes) "wakings".

2. Naps are still not going well. Nap #1 today...an hour in the pnp...no sleep. Nap #2...same story. To allow him to nap I loaded him in the car and drove to the farm/my Mom's. He slept for a good hour and 15 minutes at least. I am a little concerned that I am just replacing one habit with another...but the kid has to sleep!

3. I am slightly concerned that Noah is cutting a tooth. Teething while trying to sleep train is not ideal to put it mildly.

4. We are thankful for Friday and not having to be anywhere today. My husband will be home all day and night to help with all the naps and bedtime. Hooray!

5. Just put Noah down for bed (night #4)...the room was silent within moments of us leaving the room. Wow. We'll how the night waking goes tonight...we are almost done with the weaning process (tonight is the last night).

6. I still have my doubts about the nap section of this process...as Noah has screamed his way through 7 naps (7 hours) in the last 3 days. I have to call the night time progress an almost complete success. Noah can definitely tell when we have started the pre-bed routine and he does NOT like it. He cried through his bath and changing/song time. He whimpered through his stories and barely nursed before he went down. However, he fell asleep almost instantly.

On to the weekend...on the other side of it is the one week mark of this process and (I hope) promised improvement.

(#8 in a series)

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Diary of a Sleep Training Parent: By George!

Thursday Night: By George!

There is a scene in the musical My Fair Lady in which the three main characters are all exhausted and Henry Higgins asks Eliza Doolittle to say it again...and she repeats the phrase clearly.
"The rain in Spain stays mainly on the plain."
 A moment of shock and disbelief....and then they brust into jubilant song and dance.

"The rain in Spain stays mainly in the plain! 
   I think she's got it! I think she's got it!
The rain in Spain stays mainly in the plain! 
   By George, she's got it! By George, she's got it!
Now, once again where does it rain? 
On the plain! On the plain! 
And where's that soggy plain? 
In Spain! In Spain!" 

This is what happened in our living room tonight when I realized in less than 10 minutes Noah was sound asleep. The dance and everything (I played all three of the parts).

Two side notes in the midst of my celebration: Our baby is too smart. He now has the bedtime and nap routines memorized and starts to get upset as soon as he realizes it has begun. I managed to trick him into enjoying some of it tonight until I picked up the 3rd (and last) book to read. Hopefully he will settle into enjoying the routine at some point. 
Our baby is quite determined. I pray God will tame and use that spirit for His good.

(7th in a series)

Diary of a Sleep Training Parent: We All Fall Down

 Thursday: We All Fall Down

This family is tired.
It is an odd thing that the very reason we decided on sleep training was because of an exhaustion that was slowly creeping into every moment of every day. Odd because...today my husband and I are both beyond exhausted. I literally could not keep my eyes open for a portion of the morning. Thank you God for coffee.
I am honestly getting more sleep (in one stretch) than I have in a long time but my body basically shut down on me today.

Last night (night 2) ended up going well overall: once Noah fell asleep he stayed asleep until 6:30 am with only ONE night waking all night long. That is a huge improvement.

Today (day 2) has been a struggle. They warn us in The Sleepeasy Solution that naps will be the hardest and Noah is proving them correct. We put him down for two naps today and after an hour of protest for each - it was 1:00 in the afternoon and he was exhausted and hadn't slept a wink since that morning. The system warns not to let your baby fall asleep in your arms or nursing during this process but with a firm resolve that my baby needed to sleep I go to plan B. So, I put Noah in the car and then in the stroller and he napped there for about 1/2 an hour...better than nothing. This got him to sleep but didn't "send mixed messages" that sometimes I will hold him or nurse him to sleep and sometimes I won't. I may use this again in the coming days. We tried a third time in the later afternoon - one hour of whining - little cries and squawks - and quite a bit of talking to himself - no sleeping. Another little cat nap with Grandma Betsy in the stroller....so yeah, naps are NOT going well.

My husband through all of this is a rock. He hasn't wavered on carrying through even when I want to quit. If the old way of doing things was bad for me it was terrible for him...it was to the point where Noah really wouldn't sleep unless I was with him. One of the goals of this process is that Daddy will be able to put his son down for a nap or for the night. A worthy goal, I think.

So, we carrying on...with a commitment to each other for one solid week of this system. So in to night 3 I venture...

(6th in a series)

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Diary of a Sleep Training Parent- Can We Have A Do-Over?

Wednesday Night- Can We Have A Do-Over?

Oops...miscommunication and a summer schedule not conducive to sleep training leads to the baby being put down to sleep at 7:00 without his real bedtime routine and without a good plan as what to do next.
5, 10, 15 min. check ins.....crying, crying, more crying.
Now here's the thing...The Sleepeasy Solution says that if the baby is " calming, crying intermittently, or whining" to stop the check-ins and only start them again if he starts to cry hard.
So, that is where you currently find me Reader...listening to my son cry on and off...not sure whether I should do a check-in and cause perhaps harder crying...or if this is "intermittent" at all? It's been going on for 40 min. Instead of cleaning (my escape last night) I am writing.

And I hate it.
So far I have not seen the lovely pay off of any of this. My baby was upset most of the day and we parents are trying to do-it-all-right but feel like we are doing-it-all-wrong. Right at this moment I have no idea what to do. I know if I go in and pick him up I will lose all the "hard work" we have already done and yet that is.all.i.want.to.do.
I want my son to trust me, to know I am always there, to not be sad or frustrated or crying for...well over an hour now. Right now it feels like all he is learning is that when I walk out of the room I won't come back. that he is alone. worse. that he is on his own.

How long do I let this go on? And as I type that silence. Thank you, God.

Well over an hour and not at the correct bedtime but our Love is asleep.
Now, in all this I have the added joy of waking up Noah when he IS asleep to nurse him. This will decrease on a weaning schedule (set out by The Sleepeasy Solution) over the next few days.  Several times a night I have to actually wake the poor boy up after he has worked so hard to fall asleep to nurse him for a few moments. I just did this...and as I laid him back in his pack and play his eyes popped open and he began to protest. His little hand grabbed mine. His grip tightened.

And I pulled away.

Why on Earth am I doing this?

 Maybe I'll remember in the morning.

(5th in a series)

Diary of a Sleep Training Parent- Naps Gone Wild

Wednesday- Naps Gone Wild

First nap- cried for an hour...no sleep (The Protestor)
Second nap- cried for 30 min. slept for 30 min. (The Procrastinator)
Third nap- fell asleep in car slept 45 min.

"The Protestor" and "the Procrastinator" are terms used in The Sleepeasy Solution to describe how some kids behave at nap time. Kind of gave me confidence that they knew what the heck they were talking about.

But naps did NOT go well...frustration was mounting all day.

(4th in a series)

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Diary of a Sleep Training Parent- A Hopeful Beginning

Tuesday Night- A Hopeful Beginning

We had our plan. The bedtime routine that I had been doing for several days was ready. Nighttime weaning schedule - check. My husband and I went over the rules of the night. It began.

Bath, changing, songs, books, white noise, nursing, elephant, pacifier, Mr. Bear music box, "I love you baby boy" with a few kisses and into the dreaded pack and play he went.

He was screaming before I left the room...before he was in the pack and play really. I left.
His little face as I set him down broke my heart but I was resolute. We all need this.
5 min later I "check-in" and said all the supportive positive things I could in the allowed 30 seconds. My baby boy was up against the corner of the pack and play (closest to the door) having an all out fit. Honestly, it helped that he was using his tantrum cry...not his sad, hurt, or hungry cry. Something in my Mommy ears heard that tantrum cry and knew this was an OK lesson for him. I left and checked again at 10, 15, 15...then at 52 min. silence. 

I felt a little victorious I'm not going to lie.
And- the kitchen got cleaned...oh, I cleaned the heck out of it.

Besides his scheduled night feedings he only woke once at 12:30 for about 25 min. According to The Sleepeasy Solution Noah was to stay in his crib until 7:30 am. He woke at 6:30 am and cried for an hour. We did the little verbal check-ins but this was...without a doubt...the WORST part. There I lay...2 feet from him (if that) and I couldn't reach out and pull him into our bed and snuggle him back to sleep as I had been doing for months. I lay there and he cried and the whole thing felt very unnatural but I wanted to play by the rules (for now).

When the clock hit 7:30 we threw on the lights and showered Noah with love, praise, and cuddles.
I am sure it was (mostly) in my head but it didn't seem like he looked at me quite the same way through breakfast. We were happy with how night 1 went...and hopeful about the rest of the week.

(3rd in a series)

Monday, July 9, 2012

Diary of a Sleep Training Parent- The End of an Era

Monday Night- The End of an Era

Monday night I put Noah to bed as I had for months...with nursing and staying near to him until he drifted off. He woke up 5 times throughout the night each time needing to be nursed and held back to sleep. There was a "nice" stretch from 3:00 am to 4:00 am where Noah laid on each and every part of my body trying to get comfortable. By morning I had one stretch of 3 hours of sleep and the rest of the night had been in dribs and drabs. The night was very typical and yet very special. I was keeping track of Noah's wakings and feedings so I could begin night weaning and so we would have a starting point for our program the next night. It was a hard night because I knew that we had decided that this would (hopefully) be the end of this behavior. I had posted on facebook about our plans to sleep train and received gabs of supportive remarks. I appreciated each one but also knew many of my fb friends did not support sleep training but were respectfully remaining silent on my wall. I felt pangs of guilt for abandoning a philosophy I had clung to and shared with others for many months. In some ways putting it on facebook made it official and now I couldn't back down...maybe that's why I posted it in the first place.

Goodnight sleeping with Noah tucked between us. Goodnight little hands stroking my arm as sleep took over. Goodnight rocking, and rocking, and rocking. Goodnight laying with Noah until the pacifier fell out and his eyes slowly closed. Goodnight, my newborn. I loved every moment of it. 

(2nd in a series)

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Diary of a Sleep Training Parent - Why write it?

Why I am blogging this experience...
I wasn't going to sleep train. No, seriously, I had read all the books...searched on-line...talked to other parents. I had heard all the theories and ways of doing it. It wasn't for me. It wasn't for us. At least, not for the first 8 months.

Hard Thing About Being A Parent #26- Admitting when what you are doing is not working and trying something else. 

It wasn't working. The philosophy I loved of giving Noah a positive sleep experience where he would enter sleep with no tears was failing me. My husband and I would do and had done anything Noah needed to help him sleep.
White noise, bouncing, swinging, walking, singing, shushing, swaddling, nursing, rocking, laying with him, even having him sleep in our bed with us. Waking up. and waking up again. again.
For many months it was a good routine and it was something we believed in and felt good about. However, for the last six weeks, the months on end of getting hardly 3 hours of sleep at one time was beginning to wear on all of us.
The sleep exhaustion was...well...exhausting. I mean that in every sense of the word. We had no energy. We had no reserves. Noah even seemed crankier and crankier as the weeks wore on of being up sometimes every 45 minutes throughout the night. The lack of sleep was affecting our home, our health, and our marriage. We had to admit that this wasn't working but I could not be convinced to do anything else we had read or heard about. An appointment with our pediatrician and a coinciding conversation on facebook lead us to The Sleepeasy Solution. This is a variation on Ferber's methods of basically "crying it out" with timed check-ins by the parents.

We read and watched a DVD. I was ready to try it. Not without tears of my own. Even thinking about making such a drastic change was upsetting to me. I felt like a failure and a small part of me still hung on to wanting to help Noah get through his nights even if it meant an extreme schedule of small amounts of sleep with no end in sight. I cried thinking about Noah not laying next to me in the bed or stroking my arm as he fell asleep. This was a hard decision for me. I didn't want to sleep train Noah and I could certainly find evidence to support my feelings BUT our life was being undone at the seams by the fatigue that started to define every moment of our days.

Learning The Sleepeasy Solution I began to feel like I could do this. How can so many people be wrong? We might as well try it. Give it a go. We watched and read and planned. and prayed.

I am writing these blogs as a diary. As a record. It will be honest. I hope you, Reader, will give me the grace to go through this journey with all the ups and downs I may express here. If we fail then maybe others can learn from our mistakes. If we succeed maybe it can encourage others. Maybe no one will ever read it and it is really just for me...to process and work through (as only writing can help one do). Either way it is a record of this Mama leaving one decision and trying to embrace another way of doing things. Because her husband needs her to. Because her home needs her to. Because she needs to know it is OK to let go of what you thought would work or of what was once working and give something else a fair and fighting chance.

(1st in a series)