I dunno about the other mommies out there with toddlers but I feel used… Thomas (22 months) ONLY ever calls me Mama:
1) At night when he wakes up and needs a cuddle
2) When he really needs me – like to give him juice or an apple or something that Dad has refused to give him
3) When he’s been a brat and I ignore him a little.
The rest of the time, I’m Daddy or “ee ee ee”. Now I’ve put a fair bit of time, love and energy into this relationship and he still calls me Daddy? How does this work. He knows who I am… he knows what to call me when he really needs me and wants to butter me up, so why can I not be Mama ALL the time? It’s a bit like your current squeeze calling out the name of his ex in the throes of passion — SO NOT ON!
Another thing is kisses… He’s like a cat – love and affection on my terms, when I feel like dishing it out. My fave refrain is: “Kiss your Mama! – NO (with giggle), Kiss your Mama! – NO (with more giggles), Kiss your MAMA! – NO (with full blown belly laugh!). Daddy gets kisses whenever and wherever… I suppose the fact that I only spent 3 months at home with him and Daddy spent 18 months at home with him has something to do with it, hey? Blast… I’m so not doing the Superwoman/mommy thing next time around. But with my sort of luck, I’ll probably spend the first FIVE years with the child and it will still say Daddy first! Can’t win.
Yowzer – whoever ticked off the weathergods best make amends before tonight. Ek dink nie my swak hart sal nog ‘n woeste nag oorleef nie! I lay awake from about 02h30 fearing for my life, the house, the car and practically everything that wasn’t anchored down. It was wild here in the city, man! And guess what? Thomas slept right through all of this — weird how he wakes up if we flush the loo, which is next to his room, but last night’s armageddon type weather does nothing to him. Sod’s law at it’s best. I looked out the bedroom window and just saw buckets of water coming down with pellets of hail and lots of thunder and lightning. Was both amazing and scary.
Anyway just to be safe today, I decided not to wear an underwire bra — death by lightning conducted by your bra’s underwire doesn’t strike me as one of the most gracious ways to shuffle off. So I’m wearing one of my floppy feeding bras and my puppies are all over the place. Feels like I’m about to trip over them at any second now. And if you know me, you’ll know that I swear by underwire bras. They complete me, they make me what I am. Without them, I cannot walk upright and my knuckles drag on the floor! That’s how scary the lightning was… enough to make me forsake my blessed underwire. Which reminds me of a joke I love… You know it’s going to be a BAD day if you put your bra on backwards… AND IT FITS! Whaaaaaaaaaaaahahahahaha!
Have a good Monday and be safe!
My little sister’s valedictory today. Where has the time gone? She was 3 the other day!
My little sister leaves school today and starts her final exams soon.
Same sister has three bursaries/scholarships based on her excellent results.
Thomas is still sleeping like — dare I say it — a baby!
The MOB — even though no one seconded my change of venue to Santorini!
Spending time with my happy little family.
I saw the silly Vanilla Ice ad tonight and was relieved that Thomas’ generation will be spared that… but then there’s so much other icky music out there! *SIGH*
Thomas did a bit of a Vanilla Ice a while back. check these pics!
Baggy pants and hoody to boot!
Right. So before big boy bed there was family bed. BIG family bed but Mommy and Daddy slept on slivers of bed on each side and Lord Muck was in the centre. Not comfortable, not conducive to a happy, healthy marriage.
When we moved him to his campcot next to our bed there were lots of tears. Mostly mine! He would fall asleep in our bed and I would transfer him when he was asleep. Or he would fall asleep on my lap in the rocking chair and I’d put him in his cot. The second he woke up, he would stand up and scream to be let back into family bed. I allowed this to happen for far too long as I was tired and at night he only wanted ME not Daddy. We came very close to having a huge fight about this. But I knew I was the problem. Husband would try to soothe him and he’d persevere through all the kicking and screaming and punching but I’d be the one who couldn’t bear it.
Until one night when I was just dead tired and needed to SLEEP. I put Thomas in his cot, slung my one arm over the rail, patted and patted and fell asleep. Once I stopped patting he started howling but I was beyond my limit. Told husband to leave him and let him cry it out. He used to cry for anything from 5 to 15 minutes and I just let him. My reasoning was you’re fed, dry and not in pain… so sleep. And all he wanted was to get to my BOOBIES. Once he understood that Mommy had shut shop for the night, he quickly cut down his crying time as well. And so with a little less crying every night we got to where we are today. There were of course nights when I could hear it wasn’t just a ‘I want to be in your bed and under your boobies’ cry and that something was amiss. On those nights it was either the ear infection he had during that time and the last bits of his molars breaking through his gums. And on those nights I held him tight and had him in bed with us.
Once Thomas understood that A: It’s possible to sleep away from Mommy and survive and B: that when he wakes up Mommy WILL be there and C: Mommy is no longer falling for the fake crying that usually led to him being set free from his cot . . . things went a whole lot better at night. He started drinking milk formula for the first time at 18 months. Because the kids at creche still drink bottles he started asking for a bottle as well. It’s so funny now. He first asks me for ‘booby’ at night and when I tell him no booby, he then asks for bottie. And when we cuddle in the morning I still give him booby if he’s just too irresistable! So an ocean of tears later – some very fake tears too – I can say that my version of controlled crying and self soothing worked and I survived the snot and tears. And every bit of that “Oh I’m a crap mother” jol that echoes through those long, lonely and hard hours when they cry is all forgotten once they sleep through.
We also had fun getting his trike together. Decided to get one of these as they’re just so handy! Parents can steer and little one just has to sit there until they can pedal.
If you don’t have one yet, get one… really is a great buy and good for when they start getting tired of their prams. This way you still control where they go but they think they’re on their own!
So once the bed was assembled, the bedding was taken out and the curtains changed from baby room to big boy room, it was time for THE TEST. Will he or won’t he?
And you know what? The first night in his room, he slept from 7 pm until 11pm. Woke up and cried a bit because of the strange surrounds but a quick pat on the bum and he was down. Woke up again at 12, 1 and 3. When he woke up at 5 I was a bit moeg, so decided to family-bed again. That was the Friday night. On the Saturday night we did a fair bit of marching again, also had to fight a bit to keep him in the bed as he was pointing in the direction of our room. At first would not allow Dad to comfort him only Mommy could but I thought at this rate, Daddy was going to sleep in heavenly peace and Mommy was going to be a reck. So I told husband not to show any fear, let him know you mean business and that Mommy is not coming to bail him out. Worked like a charm. He quickly got the message and that was that. Sunday evening, he went down at 7 pm, and everytime he turned or moaned in his sleep the monitor would let us know. Had to do a few pats on bottom and cuddles here and there but Thursday night was the miracle night. He slept right through from 7 to 5 with the odd turn here and there but no need for us to get up and pat bottom or cuddle. He has a bottle of formula at bedtime, no dummy and only his hippo to keep him company.
Life is great! I now understand how people go for child number 2… Once you sleep properly again… you start rattling around in your bed and you think, Awww my baby is all big and grown and I feel like I missed out on most of it because I was all paranoid and insecure and sleep deprived… I’m going to have another one so I can be’present’ this time. But mmm I’m not that convinced yet.
Right, so I’ve been quiet… what with being on leave and finally puttinng my foot down and claiming my bed and bedroom back. Am so letting any subsequent babies sleep in their own rooms from the word go… NOT – I can so see myself wanting to keep a new baby close to me too.
So I was chatting to a colleague about a month ago about it being time to get Thomas into his own room as I suspect that his father’s snoring wakes him up and his room is ina nice quiet part of the house, not traffic noises, no dogs and cats fighting, no serenading bergies, etc.
My colleague said something terrifying. Said: We also had a midwife who advocated the whole family bed thing and we family-bedded my husband right out of the marital bed into the waiting claws of several volunteers! That was it for me. I love my son more than life itself but before l loved him, I loved his Daddy and I was not about to send my husband into the waiting claws of some volunteer! No siree. And besides, 20 months of being in our bedroom was enough family-bedding I think. He moved from our bed to his campcot at about 13 months, but he still did spend a lot of time in our bed.
So the big bed was bought and assembled two weeks ago and as you can see from the pics, he had lots of fun!
Found Daddy’s swimming goggles and decided to have fun.
Thomas has finally slept without waking, without needing a pat on the bottom, without a cuddle from 7 pm to 5 am. He’s finally moved out of our room. Is in his own room since Friday and we’ve been marching from north to south a few times every night but last night was the breakthrough. Will do a proper post on this miracle over the weekend, but for now… I’m becited (beside myself and excited) about the prospect of having uninterrupted sleep!
Thomas has finally really slept through at the ripe old age of 21 months!
No downs, no forwards… just living in the NOW!