Monday, March 31, 2008
Do I really NEED it? Or, do I just WANT it?
I've never been one of those "cry-it-out" moms and that's dictated a lot of the way I've dealt with night time parenting. It may have taken us a little longer to reach "milestones" like sleeping all night (what is that by the way?), weaning from the night time bottle, etc. But, I'm okay with that I've always felt we are doing what's right for our family and our child. People who choose to do things another way are just doing what they believe is right for their child as well and I really don't judge them for it one way or the other. After all, we all know our own children best and we parent them according to that knowledge.
Zach still "needed" his night night baba until he was two. We tried several times to offer a sippy cup instead since that is what he uses during the day. But, it made bedtime so traumatic and drawn out for us (he would throw the sippy across the room, scream BABA and cry for EVER). I realized he just wasn't ready to give up that last bit of infant comfort so I let him continue as I watered down the milk and tried to trick him into just drinking water. But now with potty training in full swing, I just felt it was a good time to try again. My theory was that doesn't want a sippy, therefore he didn't really NEED the milk and he would likely give it all up if he was ready to get rid of the baba. My theory was partly proven. I bought a special night night cup and he actually went for it this time, drank half the amount of milk and went to bed with no crying, no whining. Then a few nights he even refused the milk and said "I don't want it." I thought we had achieved total weaning bliss, then he learned how to use the words need and please against me.
Last night, Zach ate a great dinner (rare) and drank all his milk. He went upstairs willingly to the bath and then snuggled up in the recliner for books and songs before bed. I didn't even offer milk, since he has refused it the last three or four nights. He'd laid there listening for quite awhile and then said, "MILK, peas mommy." I told him that he didn't need any milk, that he'd just had some at dinner. Then he put on his biggest pout, took his pacifier out and said "I need it" in the best "I will wrap you around my finger" voice I have ever heard. He kept saying how he needed it and drawing out the word "need." Now I know he didn't "need" it; he just "wanted" it. So did I cave? No, I didn't; I just kept singing over him saying "I need it, peas mommy, I neeeeeeeeed it." OH my gosh the kid can make you feel like crap haha. He finally did go down, but not without a little fight. He moaned for nearly an hour after I left the room. Moaning and talking to his animals, turning his womb bear off and on, yelling for Davey (he's been refusing to say daddy lately) and Mommy. Davey went in several times and just put a hand on his back to try and calm him. But this went on ALL freaking night. I think it has something to do with his accidentally, ultra-long nap yesterday afternoon. (FYI, toddlers do NOT need to sleep more than 3 hours on a Sunday afternoon just because parents need to nap too.) David finally went in and just slept with Zach in the recliner, but no one slept well.
In my tired stupor this morning, I've been thinking a lot about need versus want and how much I actually "whine" about things in my own life. I NEED winter to be over (now there are some health issues involved concerning vit. D, but I digress); I NEED to move back to Texas or Oklahoma; I NEED ice cream; I NEED to get a perfect evaluation at work. This list of NEEDS can go on and on all day long, but how many of them, when I really break it down, really are true needs? Probably close to zero percent. Fact is, I WANT all of those things, but will I die if I don't get them? Probably not, although the winter one and moving home are hard to decipher at times!
I think I just need to learn to be more satisfied with what I have and quit worrying about what I don't have.