Saturday, September 20, 2008


This is what I've been hearing since 7am. A whiny baby. A whiny baby who has decided to use my love for her against me and insist on ONLY sleeping if she is in bed with me. The crib is clearly beneath her and I should know it and she is doing a damn fine job of making sure I don't forget.

I'm tired, cranky, annoyed and I need to study.

Last night she wouldn't fall asleep until 8:30 because she took a 15 minute power nap in the car on the way home from dinner. What kind of person can stay up an extra 1 to 1-1/2 hours after a mere 15 minutes of light sleep? I'll have what she's having. PLEASE. She slept until 2:30am then was hungry. Okay, taken care of. She fell into a light sleep after the bottle, looking like an angel sent from heaven as I carefully laid her down in the Pack n' Play (we are still in SA). The MOMENT her Princess and the Pea-esque body touched the mattress her eyes popped open and she started to fake wail. I went and sat back on the bed, determined to wait her out. I put 5 minutes on the clock and counted every second. Her fake wail soon turned into a very real wail followed by giant crocodile tears that I found pooled around her ears when 5 minutes had passed. I picked her up and she immediately settled down, burying her face into my neck as I rocked her back and forth, back and forth, back and forth waiting for her breathing to settle.

Once I thought she was sleeping I tried laying her down again. Rookie move. The wail of the abused baby commenced. This time I put 10 minutes on the clock. 7-1/2 minutes in and Kevin asked exactly what I was doing. I told him he could pick her up if he wanted hoping maybe a change of person would do the trick. Five minutes later she was sleepy. He laid her down. She cried. I died a little [more] inside. I tried holding her hand, rubbing her chest, anything but nothing worked. Finally Kevin asked/demanded/begged me to bring her to bed. By this time it was after 3:30am. She slept like an angel right next to me before waking at 7am, far too early for her tired Momma.

From 7-9am I tried everything to keep her happy. Nothing worked. She wasn't crying or throwing a fit, just whining. LOUDLY. Eventually everyone was up. After a nap-inducing bottle I came up with an idea involving the PnP mobile and a sheet to block out the light in our room, hoping against hope I could get her to nap on her own, without me. The first 8 minutes she fussed off and on then spit out her pacifier and really let me hear it. 4 minutes after that and she was quiet. I want you to close one eye (because you need the other one to read) and create a mental picture of this scene:
  • Blue floral sheet draped over PnP.
  • Baby laid down to rest deciding whether or not to comply with this incarceration.
  • Ocean waves fill the room from the sound machine.
  • As silent as a ninja, Momma carefully climbs into bed and under the covers for her own nap ONLY during the loudest upswing of the wave crashing onto imaginary rocks. Move. By. Move. This takes approximately 3 minutes.
Sad but true. I will do whatever it takes to get her to sleep in her crib. Don't get me wrong, I love sleeping with her. Morning and afternoon naps have been my faaaaavorite part of the day, but she is abusing this privilege and it is all my fault. (Man don't you hate that?) She has taken our occasional nap together and slowly suckered me into an every nap, every night phenomenon, one which I have been trying to deny but the big bad bags under my eyes scream the truth.

She took a midday nap from 12:45 to 1:20 and now her afternoon nap is going on at this very moment. She's been asleep for 37 minutes - please pray that this turns into 1-2 hours. Avelyn is under the impression that she is happy go lucky with two 40 minute naps a day. She is severely mistaken.

Avelyn woke up at 3:55, exactly 40 minutes after falling asleep and 3 minutes after I so faithfully hoped against hope for a long nap. What is up with this kid? At least she was in a better mood. I gave her Tylenol and a bottle before her nap because I am pretty sure she had a headache and I blame the San Antonio cedar. She was rubbing her eyes with her chubby little fists at 5:30 so I know she wore herself out today. I gave the poor dear a bath and a bottle and after collapsing in my arms she went down easily into the PnP. A part of me missed our regular nighttime routine of listening to her CD and/or reading our books. But another part of me (the part that feels guilty about what it's feeling) was a little relieved not to fight the usual 30+ minutes it can take to fall asleep even when she's really tired.

Overall I read very little today, have A LOT to read this weekend and now I'm sad that I didn't spend more time with her... by that I mean ALL my time with her. Thus ends another educationally unsuccessful but emotionally fulfilling day. I can't believe how much I love this baby.

[Jennifer's Alternate Reality: Her baby is not whining. Or crying. Or refusing to sleep. In fact she never does these things. She is happy and perfectly content to play on the floor in short bursts by herself so Jennifer can read a few pages throughout the day. These short bursts of "independence training" are intertwined with looooong stretches filled with reading, dancing, singing, long walks, floor play and lots of cuddling.

I should probably mention that in JAR, Jennifer got sprayed with some sort of toxic waste product because now there are two of her at home! J-1 gets to spend all day just being Avelyn's mom, not that there's anything "just" about being a mom since taking care of a baby is a full-time physically/emotionally/psychologically demanding job with no monetary paycheck at the end of a hard day. J-2 can spend as much time as she wants just reading and studying and learning about all kinds of cool medical stuff - you know, the stuff the real Jennifer doesn't have time for. While we're at it a third Jennifer just appeared! J-3's sole purpose is to take care of Jennifer's hubby who, let's face it, is most assuredly feeling neglected and nostalgic for the wife that once was.

Yep, that JAR is one rockin' place. If you find the portal that might lead me there (as long as it isn't located in a creepy, dirty tunnel or someone else's brain) please call Jennifer and leave a message with VERY detailed instructions because the real Jennifer rarely answers her phone and probably won't call you back... add that to J-3's task list.]


  1. What a hard day! Several sleep articles out there now are saying that babies can't manipulate until they are into the 9th month. I bet it is just fine to sleep with her - she likes, you like it, and you both get rest. The majority of babies around the world sleep with their Mommies until toddlerhood and have no independece issues.

    Blessings! I know first hand how hard it can be. Do what works for both of you, not what the world or books or other people are saying is the "right" way to do something.

    PS- I love "The Baby Book" by William Sears. Lots of great info.

  2. I don't know who to believe! You say one thing - that I totally get. However, your daughter says "you know she's lying don't you?" with those piercing blue eyes!

    We have our sleep issues too. Although Elisa sleeps like a champ, she only sleeps in her bed. I see kids in strollers, car seats and in arms fast asleep and I think "ain't no way my kid would ever do that." I know it is hard, but hang in there. Today is one more day closer to normalcy.

    PS - we got the pictures in the mail on Friday. Thanks for thinking of us!

  3. Ohhhh, I can relate to you on this post. It's amazing how well they sleep when they're snuggled up with mommy and daddy! She is beautiful!


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