Monday, March 26, 2007

Hush little baby

Well, the sleeping is getting better, as I've said before. However, as I think I also mentioned, she's falling asleep with a pacifier, which means that when she wakes up as a normal part of the sleep cycle, she notices she no longer has the pacifier and cries for it. So tonight I'm biting the bullet. Last night I managed to keep her in her crib all night, and even managed to get her to put herself back to sleep once or twice. I had decided that this week, while Ryan is away and I don't have to worry about keeping him awake, I would wean her off of the soother. I know that at 5 months it's not a big deal for her to still be on it, but it's not giving me any more sleep, it just means I don't have to nurse her to sleep. Tonight as I stood over her trying to keep the soother in her mouth, I decided this is the night. I'm not going to stand over her forcing it into her mouth when I'm just going to take it away soon anyway. So now I'm in the office, waiting 10 minutes before I go back in to try to settle her down without giving her the pacifier or picking her up. This has been my stumbling block in the past. I know I'm supposed to go back in after 5 min, then 10, then 12, etc, but without picking her up, she doesn't settle down or stop crying even when I come in, so how long do I stand over her trying to get her to stop?

Four minutes to go.

The other problem here is that I need Sammie and Hailey to fall asleep quickly, because they have to get up early tomorrow as we're going to London to look at flower girl dresses. I don't know how they're going to fall asleep with that screaming in the next room. And yet, for the first night in a long time, I haven't heard a peep out of them since I kissed them goodnight and left their room. Hailey didn't nap today so she's very tired, and they were outside riding their bikes after dinner, so maybe they're good and tired for once.

Two minutes.

I suppose I could go do something useful and productive like put away laundry or clean my room. Nah. If I have to listen to a crying baby, I'm at least going to do something I enjoy while I listen. I'm thinking for the next 10 minute stretch I'll have a shower or something. Maybe read a book - I've just started a biography of Pierre Elliot Trudeau. I've always been fascinated by him, even if I'm too young to really remember Trudeaumania.

Okay, 10 minutes are up.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Who's watching me?

So, if you ever read the comments, you will know that I've received my first comment from someone I've never met. I've wondered if there's anyone out there reading this other than my friends. I don't even know how many of them are reading. So, who's watching (or should that be reading?) me? Please let me know! I'll even make it fun for you. Please tell me:
1. Who are you?
2. If I don't know you, how did you find me?
3. If I do know you, tell me something about you I don't already know.

See? Isn't that fun?

Well, the sleeping thing is getting better. She has been consistently going to sleep without being rocked or nursed, but since I'm using the pacifier, I'm on a search and rescue mission every hour or so. But on the whole, I think it's working out well. She's happier when she's awake, she's going to sleep quickly, and I think we're getting more quality time when she's awake, because I'm making an effort to be tuned into her moods and needs, and making sure she gets lots of cuddles and love (my theory is that babies make a bigger fuss and demand more attention at night if they aren't getting enough affection during the day) Next step will be getting her to sleep in her crib, then getting her to fall asleep without the pacifier. Hopefully by the time I go back to work after Easter she'll be sleeping beautifully.

Because of the new sleep training program, I decided not to go to the first Kitchener Rangers playoff game tonight, so Ryan took Hailey. I just thought I shouldn't throw off Rylee's sleep patterns so early in the program, and I wasn't going to go and leave her here, because I know I wouldn't enjoy it, I'd just be wondering if she was sleeping or screaming or what. Sammie and Hailey discussed it at dinner and realized Sammie went with Daddy last time, so Hailey went tonight. Sammie and I cuddled while we watched Madeline's Winter Vacation, then played the Caillou memory game and had TWO stories before bed (unheard of when Mommy's putting them to bed!) It was nice, because as I said before, I don't get a lot of one-on-one time with Sammie where I can just enjoy her and let her be a little girl. So often she has to be the big girl and Mommy's big helper, when she's not quite five years old! So tonight we cuddled on the couch and on her bed.

I am very excited because today I made contact with one of my best friends from high school. I haven't seen her or talked to her in about 15 years (am I dating myself? I suppose it doesn't matter, pretty much everyone reading this knows exactly how old I am). She graduated a year before I did, and her family had moved away from Peterborough, so we lost touch. Now we've found each other again and it turns out she lives in Burlington! (for anyone unfamiliar with southwestern Ontario, that's less than an hour's drive away from me) Welcome Jo - I'm so happy to have you in my life again.

I think Ryan and Hailey are home so I will go help get her ready for bed. Assuming she's still awake.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

I do believe it's getting better...

Well, last night she fell asleep nursing at about 9 pm (I know - I shouldn't do that!) She woke up when I tried to put her down at 10, so I let her cry for about 5 min, then Hailey started crying and Ryan's sister was here, so I picked her up and let her sleep in my arms and on my chest. I tried to put her down around 11:30 so I could watch 24 with Ryan, but she woke up again. This time I was determined not to pick her up or feed her. Ryan heard the cries (hers, not mine) and came up. Between us, we talked and cuddled and soothed until she, to put it delicately, passed gas. A few times. Then she settled down and finally fell asleep on our bed. If Ryan hadn't been with me I know I would have given in and nursed her, and set up another terrible night. As it was, she fell asleep around 1 am (I think) and slept till almost 8 am with only one waking/feeding. She fell asleep in the car on the way to the grocery store this morning, and slept while we walked around. For her afternoon nap, I lay down beside her on our bed, put her bedtime blankie on and gave her a soother, and talked softly to her and let her hold my finger until she fell asleep. Incredibly, it only took about 15 min and let go of my finger on her own, I didn't have to pry it away from her. I've read that if you can just steel yourself to listen to the crying once or twice, these cry it out methods work quickly. Maybe it's true. I will try again tonight. I think I'm starting to figure out her wake/eat/sleep patterns too, which is helping.

Crap. She's awake.

edited to add: Yay! I got her back to sleep again the same way, without picking her up or anything!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

A meme!

I've never done one of these in my blog before - I don't even know what a meme is, really. Anyway, I got this from Daph's blog - thanks Daph!

Comment and I will:

Tell you why I friended (befriended?) you.
Associate you with a song/film.
Tell a random fact about you.
Tell a first memory about you.
Associate you with a character/pairing.
Ask something I've always wanted to know about you.
Tell you my favorite story about you.
In retort, you must spread this disease in your blog (well, you don't have to do that).

I was actually just going to post to share this story - we were just looking out the window trying to decide if it's snowing or if that's just snow from the ground blowing around, and trying to convince Hailey that the snow isn't actually melting at this precise moment, and certainly not in amounts that you can actually see. Sammie told her the snow looks the same every time you look at it, and that it's all sparkly. Then she said, "It sure is beautiful when it's sparkly. It's like God put glitter on it."

Last night was terrible, then better. At one point I was sobbing almost hysterically, begging Rylee to go to sleep, or at least stop crying. Strangely, it seemed that the more hysterical I got, the quieter she got. And of course she didn't start any of this until Ryan left to play hockey, and stopped about 2 minutes before he got home.

At least I had a yummy breakfast. Ryan came up and told me there was breakfast on the table for me, and when I got downstairs, the kettle was on, too. What a good man :)

Sunday, March 18, 2007

130 baby!

Ryan and I watched Test the Nation on CBC tonight and took the IQ test. We had a few different answers, but ended up with identical scores - 52 out of 60, for an IQ of 130! And that's with a crying baby in my arms for most of the test!

Now, as a teacher, believe me, I know standardized tests are not the be all and end all. I know they are somewhat questionable as actual measures of intelligence because they are culturally biased and because people from lower socio-economic strata are at a disadvantage. I know all about multiple intelligences, and that it's all about not how smart are you, but how are you smart. I KNOW all this. But at the end of a sleep-deprived week, when I'm feeling like I can't do anything right and I'm not doing a good job at anything in my life, that 130 felt pretty damn good.

Rylee has just been so fussy lately. She cries a lot through the day, is very difficult to get to sleep day or night, and wakes up every 2-3 hours at night. If I don't just bring her into my bed, I'm up for at least half an hour with her each time. I get to the point where I just need my sleep so I'll do whatever it takes, which is usually bring her into my bed and feed her, which then perpetuates her being reliant on that to get to sleep. I'm at the end of my rope and don't know what to do anymore.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Who needs sleep?

Apparently not Rylee! Yes, for all my smugness a couple of months ago, the child has turned into a non-sleeper. She has been waking up every 2-3 hours at night, and insisting on eating each time. She's been quite fussy during the day too, which is why I haven't posted in a while. A public health nurse suggested it was related to her being sick a couple of weeks ago, and that it was temporary. I sure hope so. Things were looking up on the weekend but last night was bad again. Tonight, however, she fell asleep without nursing and when she woke up an hour later, I was able to get her back to sleep without nursing again. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that it lasts, and just in case it doesn't, I'm going to bed now.

Saturday, March 3, 2007

New Blog!

I have started a new blog, one that's just for fun. Check it out and let me know what you think - Thanks to Daph and her poetry blog for inspiring it! Daph - I think I even copied your template - I didn't mean to, it's just the one I thought suited the blog.

Thursday, March 1, 2007

If a four-year-old gets it...

Sammie saw my book on the kitchen table the other day and asked what it was called. I told her it's called Shake Hands with the Devil. The cover has a picture of Romeo Dallaire and she asked if he was the devil man. I told her no, he was a good man, so she asked if there was a bad devil in my book. I explained that there wasn't actually a devil, but some people doing bad things. She of course wanted to know what the bad things were, and who wants to explain genocide to a four year old? Not me, thanks, so I told her that a group of people was hurting another group of people just because they were different. She frowned and said, "But they don't have to hurt them just because they're different. They don't all have to be the same. They can still just be friends even if they're different." Here's hoping she never stops thinking that way.

More words of wisdom from Sammie: I had Hailey in the bathroom yesterday trying to get her to sit on the potty or the toilet and pee, which she still refuses to do, despite the fact that Sammie pees on the toilet and these days Hailey can't even decide what to drink with lunch until she knows what Sammie's having. So Sammie pops in and tells Hailey, "Peeing on the toilet is good. You get to have some time by yourself to just think about things." Is that why it takes her so long in the bathroom?

Sammie is getting frustrated by Hailey copying everything she eats, drinks and does, so she's taken to whispering her requests so that Hailey can't hear and therefore can't copy her. Yesterday she asked for apple juice, and just to be sure I'd heard her correctly, I asked, "A-p-p-l-e?" Since this is one of the words she can spell, she recognized it and nodded. Today at breakfast the same thing happened. Then I asked Hailey what she wanted to drink, and she replied, "Ay-pe-pe-pelly" or something like that (it's difficult to put in writing!)

Apparently my grandmother's lymph nodes are shrinking, which is supposed to be good news, I guess. She's been moved to another hospital for rehab on her hip. However, the doctors drained more fluid from her lungs last week and the oncologist said she didn't like the look of it, so she sent it for testing. The results should be back today. The oncologist said she has suspicions but doesn't want to say anything until the results are in.

Enough for now - I think I'll try to get a shower in while the baby is sleeping!