We had an absolute blast with Everly for her first Christmas. I honestly can not remember a Christmas that has been more fun or meaningful for me. Every single thing was new and magical again. Seeing the reflection of the lights in her eyes and watching her tear open gifts and laugh as she played with the B*ll*s*it button (oops, lol), was awesome, I am grinning from ear to ear now just thinking about it. Everly was very lucky and received so many generous gifts. I think that we probably have double the amount of toys in our house right now, which is okay because half of them are ready to be packed away anyway because she is too old for them- so these Christmas toys could not have come at a better time 🙂 Our family is very blessed and for that we are so thankful.
The holidays were also eventful. Everly started to say mama with meaning, clap her hands, wave bye-bye, sign for more and she began to get on the move by crawling and pulling to stand. When she was born, my dad said that Everly would be crawling by Christmas and he was right. She doesn’t have the most graceful crawl and sometimes she still face plants but boy does she move! The pulling to stand skill is more recent. Once she realized that she could go from her hands and knees to sitting and from sitting to hands and knees, she spent an entire day perfecting the art. In this perfecting, she found that while on her bum, she could get on one knee somehow and if there was something close to grab, she could pull herself up- now she tries to pull herself up on everything that she can reach. My dad also said the she would be walking by my birthday (March) and as much as I don’t want to stunt Everly’s development I kind of hope he is wrong because I want her to be a little baby for just a little bit longer!
During the holidays we all took a break from life as usual. We let our routine go and just rolled with the punches… and now we are getting punched for it! Now that isn’t to say that I wouldn’t have done what we did, I totally would have and would do it again, it was worth it; I wasn’t about to let schedules and routines get in the way of the holidays and having fun! Everly had a great time too! She got to stay up past her bedtime for many nights in a row and she was nursed to sleep because by the time she was going to sleep she was so overtired and cranky it was the only thing that would work! Oh the holidays were fun.
Now that the holidays are over, we tried to resume life as normal and as you could have probably guessed it didn’t really work. Last night was our first attempt at bedtime as we used to know it, well she would have no part in it, she wrestled with us the whole time. I ended up rocking her to sleep in the rocking chair, which only took a swift 45 minutes. B voted that we put her in the crib and let her cry it out again, that lasted 5 minutes and I decided that I couldn’t take it anymore. If we can avoid all that crying again I really would like to. I can’t honestly say that it worked all that great because once there was a change in routine we had to start all over again, so it feels like she really didn’t learn anything at all and just got used to it. This realization made me feel kind of crappy, kind of like wow, she just gave up on us coming to get her so she went to sleep. I don’t know that I want her to feel that way, but I also want her to know how to self soothe and put herself back to sleep. Is there a way to do both? I have no clue but I have decided to try to learn.
When I started the sleep training research I read quick outlines of the different theories out there. Most of them said that they involve some crying, but the way in which you let the baby cry differs. So, after much deliberation we went with the Sleepsense Program and well if you have been reading this blog you know how that worked out! After nearly 60 days in the Sleepsense Program we realized that it wasn’t working, if it had worked we would have used it again now! Honestly I just can’t see putting Everly and I through that again. As a result, we have decided to revisit some of the other theories and possibly give them a chance too. Or maybe, combine many different sources and come up with something original that works perfectly for us. I know that you are supposed to choose one method and stick with it, so we don’t intend to flip flop, we stuck with Sleepsense for 60 days afterall! So after the reading, it will be time to make choices. The choices I refer to will be based in reality, none of this nonsense about her sleeping 12 hours uninterrupted every night without fail. If she does end up doing that, well that’d be great, but really, I don’t mind getting up once a night to feed her. I realize that in the grand scheme of things she isn’t really that challenging though the night, more than anything I just want to be able to lay her down in her bed, say goodnight and have her asleep contentedly. I want to watch her peacefully drift off to sleep, feeling secure and happy. In the end, I don’t want this to be about anything other than Everly and her parents getting a good night’s sleep and going to bed happy! So here begins that journey.