Thursday, January 12

a little bit of independence

The first time my baby falls a sleep in their bed with out me rocking them, it's always difficult for me.

I don't know what it is but there is something about rocking my sleepy baby and having them give in to the weight of their eyelids, hearing that heavy sigh of total relaxation as their bodies and minds drift off to dream land. I know it's not for everyone, to allow a 15 month old to need me rocking him or her to sleep before putting them in their bed. That's ok.

Ever since I held my daughter in my arms for the first time I knew that I would hold her, rock her to sleep for as long as she allowed me to. They only stay little for a short time. I never wanted to look back and think I should have rocked her to sleep longer. Or regret rushing her into a little bit of independence.

And when my son came along, I decided that any way that I could I would do the same with him. I would rock him to sleep until he didn't want to be rocked to sleep any more. It's been much more challenging having a toddler running around the house who needs my supervision pretty much all the time still. But we have managed and I've been able to rock him to sleep for bed and for naps.

Today was different. I didn't see it coming, I didn't with his big sister either. Lately my little 15 month old son will fight going to sleep, even though he is too tired to keep his eyes open. He fights with them shut. If he resists me by arching his back then I simply lay him in his crib and tell him 'night-night' and leave the room. Usually I return when the sound of his tears turns to a sound of surrender and I pick him up and rock him to sleep.

Today he resisted and I laid him down, but he never cried. He talked and moved around and stayed content. So I left him in there. I knew I would go back in if he began to cry enough that I knew he was ready. It wasn't long though, before I couldn't hear him moving around on the monitor. I listened closer... nothing.

Being the panicky worrier that I am my first thought is he's dead! and I swiftly but quietly crack open his door to check. He's asleep. He's asleep!.... He's asleep... no crying, no fussing... no rocking.

And don't get me wrong, it's bittersweet. With the birth of our third baby around the corner I've been {secretly} praying that he would get to this point. And just the way his sister did, in the eleventh hour of our third child's birth, he gains a little bit of his independence. And I'm proud of him.

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