Most of you know that back in October, we went Ferber in this house. Things were going super awesome, until issues like teething, the 8th month sleep regression and cats relentlessly chasing lost Christmas ornaments around the house at midnight began. Just after Thanksgiving, Miles decided that every night at midnight, it would be party time. Jumping up and down in the crib, singing to the ceiling, babbling at the cats…until 2am. EVERY. SINGLE. NIGHT.
“Oh, it’s teething,” I thought to myself for the first two weeks, until I realized there were no more teeth coming at this moment. “Oh, it’s a developmental sleep regression,” I convinced myself, after reading WebMD, Wonder Weeks and “What to Expect: The Toddler Years” at 3am (What to Expect spoiler alert: expect chaos). “Oh, it’s the stupid cat with ANOTHER JINGLE BELL ORNAMENT,” I hissed at 2am for three nights in a row before I banished everyone to the garage and told them I’d never feed them again if they didn’t settle down.
And then, my late night WebMD-ing finally struck gold: he was awake, and it was my fault.
Miles has reached an age in which he understands object permanence (that things can disappear). I know, fancy terminology that essentially means, “WHERE THE HELL IS MY MOM?!”
You see, our normal bedtime routine lasted from 7:30p-8p. Miles had started falling asleep during the rocking chair/concert portion of the evening, and I didn’t think much of it, other than it was super cute and I finally got a chance to snuggle him as if he were a widdle tiny baby again! But, this was actually disrupting his sleep, because when he would normally sigh and roll over at midnight, now he was waking up realizing I was gone. Object permanence. Cue WTF crib jumping and yelling.
And so, because we are gluttons for punishment, we reintroduced Cry It Out (CIO). Yes, it sucked, but you know what? From the first night of CIO Part Deux, Miles slept through the night. THE ENTIRE NIGHT. This meant that now we get to sleep all night. All of the hours, mine. I can hog the bed, roll up in the covers like a burrito, and not have any anxiety over when we’d be up…because we aren’t. Cue the “Hallelujah Chorus.”
The first night, he cried half an hour, and I had to take a shower to keep myself from barreling in the nursery to scoop him up. The second night, 15 minutes. The third, 5 minutes. The fourth, he was done by the time I made it to the kitchen. And now? NOW, he is awake when I put him in his crib, but he just rolls over and goes to sleep. This is worthy of a parade.
Now, CIO: Part Deux couldn’t be completely uneventful, because if it were I wouldn’t have anything to write about. So let’s talk about Night Three. Sometimes kids cry; and sometimes, they cry so hard they throw up. Parents and teachers, you know exactly what I’m talking about. Miles went to sleep (after yelling for 5 minutes), and after 20 minutes, I went in to do my usual bed check. He was snuggled up, butt up in the air, peaceful as could be. I did the PJ check. It was then that I realized he had managed to cough up some broccoli-carrot-cheese onto his PJ pants (that smells as delicious as it sounds, by the way). This meant he needed to be changed. On night three of CIO. Jesus, take the wheel.
I went to the living room for reinforcements. Evan and I managed to get the broccoli ridden PJ pants off, and got him into the new, clean PJ pants. This was so successful, we quietly congratulated ourselves and had a celebratory victory dance I the nursery. And then, I decided Miles needed his big, fluffy blanket (polar vortex, remember?) So I got the blanket, and tossed it on the kid. Success again! Evan started to leave the nursery, and told me to follow…the look in his eyes let me know that he saw the look in my eyes (no, not that look)…the blanket was crooked. People with OCD, you know what I’m talking about.
I fixed the blanket. And, of course, because I touched the corner of his blanket ever so slightly, Miles woke up. It was then that we made the Spy vs.Spy move that all parents make at least once: we jumped down and hid at the end of the crib (his has solid panels at each end, thank you, Ikea). Miles sat up. He cried, he talked, he moved around. He got quiet. I tried to peek in, and he’d start moving and talking again. We were stuck.
Each time I attempted to crane my head around the corner to catch a glimpse, I would most certainly hear him flop onto his butt, or bang on the crib slats. Evan would chance a peek over the top of the crib, only to collapse instantly on the floor because Miles was just sitting there staring at the nursery door.
This lasted an eternity (ten minutes). Finally, Evan nosed around the side of the crib and confirmed the target was sleeping. He then ordered me in a whisper-yell to get out of the nursery. I compulsively checked Miles’ blanket yet again, then Army crawled into the hallway. Once I was in the clear, Evan followed suit.
In a few minutes, I will go into the nursery for the last bed check of the evening. I will make sure his feet are covered, and I will kiss his sweet, fuzzy noggin, but I will not straighten the blanket.
Note to self: Additional nursery essentials include deck of cards, bottle of wine, picnic blanket, extra pillows and an old Us Weekly. Just in case…
Red Team Go,