A good friend recently said to me that with the second child, you realize not every technique you read about will necessarily work for your child. And it's okay. It's okay to acknowledge that fact.
A few weeks ago I started sleep training my eight-month old baby because I was tired and frustrated. I tried the controlled crying method, in which you go to your infant at short intervals, providing comfort and reassurance without actually picking him up out of the crib. It has worked successfully for other people.
I tried this method for a few days.
Then, on the fourth day, he was up at 4 a.m. I stood over his crib, rubbing his back, saying soft words to soothe him as he cried. All I could think was, he is my baby, he wants me to pick him up. I want to pick him up. And then I thought.
Screw this. And picked him up.
And that, my friends, was the end of sleep training and the end of my plan to regain through-the-night sleeping for who knows how long.
What the hell is coffee for anyway?
The truth is, as I was standing there, over his crib at 4 a.m. I thought to myself, he is probably my last baby. My last baby who is already eight months and growing (too) fast. Soon he'll be crawling, then walking, then he'll be a toddler and he won't want to be picked up - he'll want independence from his mum.
And so I said screw it, and I held him, and I enjoyed the warmth and closeness of my baby, who won't be a baby for very much longer.
And it may be that I don't sleep through the night ever again. Okay not ever again. I'm being dramatic. But it could be another six months, or longer.
But I will pick him up, I will go to him, and I will sit and hold him and rock him to sleep at 4 a.m. because that's what feels right for me. For us. And I have an oddly confident feeling that he'll grow out of his night wakings before too long without the sleep training anyway.
It feels good to admit something didn't work and I'm okay with it.
Ask me if I feel the same next year and I may give you a different answer.