Monday, April 11, 2011

Chronicles of Cry It Out - Day Three

This brings us to last night. Charlie had been in so much pain during the day that we were worried about putting her down, but we knew that if we weren't consistant, the last two nights would be for naught. So, we put her down when her eyes started getting droopy, and the crying started immediately. We hunkered down on the couch and listened carefully to her cries, worried that she was in pain. There were a lot of breaks in her cries, and we didn't know if that was because she was so sleepy, or if she was just catching her breath, but it worried us. So, 20 minutes into it, Tim went in to give her more gas drops. We knew this would work her up, but we were so concerned that she was in pain. Sure enough, this made her furious, that he would have the audacity to come in and leave again without her. So, her cries amped up for a few minutes, but subsided again pretty quickly. Even with the interruption, she cried less than 45 minutes before falling asleep. Progress! She woke at midnight, and I fed her and put her back down. She fussed a little, so I gave her her pacifier and she calmed down. At two she was up again. I fed her, rocked her and put her back down (asleep), but she woke up screaming a few minutes later. I didn't know what to do, if I should let her cry herself to sleep, or just go get her. It didn't seem fair for Tim to be woken up by crying in the middle of the night, since he's working a 12 hour day today, so I went and got her, and she spent the rest of the night next to me. Her pain seems to have subsided, and she was pretty chipper this morning. She's now napping in her crib. We'll see what happens tonight. I'm hoping for twenty minutes of fussing...I'll let you know.


  1. Oh Erin, hang in there!! I remember so vividly how difficult that process is and will be there again soon with #2. But having done it once, we will definitely do it again, even though it was hard. The payoff is SO SO worth it. You know your baby and her cries, so go with your gut! If you think she's in pain, there is no guilt in taking care of her, but I think you're so right in being as consistent as possible! I remember being surprised by the cycles of crying... right when she quieted and I started to breathe easily, she'd start the whole fuss-cry-wail-fuss-whimper-quiet cycle again. Every baby is different but for us it only took about 3-5 days of the process and then she seemed to "get" that we weren't at her beck and call and that she could learn to go to sleep herself. But I remember feeling like I was going to go crazy and even cycled through stress, anxiety, anger at her for being such a stinker! haha I think that's normal. Just remember that Tim and friends/family are your biggest help when you're going nuts. I always felt the same about trying to keep Lyddie quiet and that I was responsible for it all on nights before Jesse had to work, but eventually I really understood that he WANTED me to tell him if I was at my wits end, even if he was going to be totally wiped the next day. I realized that I couldn't do it all by myself, and that I was also working a 12 hour day as a momma the next day. So if Tim's anything like Jesse (and I bet he is!) he wants to know if you need help, if you need even 30 minutes with the pillow over your ears while he keeps his ears open for her to fall asleep in the next room...
    And as a word of encouragement, I am SO glad we stuck with it, no matter what "contemporary parenting" wisdom says... the payoff is significant for us. Lyddie has easily gone down to bed for months and months without crying (although there are occasionally developmental stages where she will "test the limits" again for 2-3 nights, so be ready for those a few months down the road, but they're much easier than the first go) and goes down for naps regularly and bed at a reasonable time, allowing Jesse and I time to have consistent devotions and prayer together and time to talk or time for me to read and knit, or whatever! I have friends who don't "believe in" cry it out and their toddlers are up all hours until "they're tired", which is fine for them, I suppose, but I know as a mom, I NEED that time desperately and our family functions so much better this way.
    So all that long comment to say... stick with it, hang in there, have someone you can call, either Tim or a friend or someone, if you're feeling crazy... you can do it!!!

  2. We are going through the same thing with Ashlyn. And with her being our fourth, you think it would be easier, or we would just be used to it. She was sleeping through the night on her own at 4 weeks, but that only last a short while and we started dealing with her breathing issues. There were nights that her wheezing was so bad that she was right next to me so I could hear. Now that her breathing seems to be better we are working on getting her to sleep through the night. Our ped told us that I should put her to bed with the other kids and then I could get her up to feed her once before midnight but nothing between midnight and 6 am. You can take that info or leave it. For us, Ashlyn cried for 45 min than slept for 45 min. Cried for 45 min, slept for 45 min. She went through that cycle until I finally gave in at 3 am and got her because I needed the sleep to be able to function for the other 3 kids. I had to wait until there was a night that Travis could help. That just happened to be Sat. night. So we are on night two of 'sticking with it'. I was very glad that this cycle did not start like the last and she cried for about an hour and then slept with only a couple cry outs during the night. Last night she cried for 45 min but woke up at 3 am and cried for 15 but fell back to sleep so we will see how tonight goes. For me, I have to turn the baby monitor off when we put her down and just turn it on occasionally to check her cry and breathing. I just can't listen to 45 mins of straight crying and still be sane. You have to just find a way that you are comfortable. You are not a bad mom for letting her cry. She will still love you in the morning. I know all this, but it is still hard for me and there are times where Travis has to almost hold me down so that I don't give in. Each one it has been like this. I say all this to know that I understand completely and am struggling through it with you right now! You are not alone. I will be thinking of you tonight while Ashlyn is crying and pray that you will be able to get through this and that Charlie won't be in any pain! Hope the meds are working.

  3. Bravo Erin!! You guys can do it, and Charlie will do it. I think there is a pervasive attitude today that parenting is "fun" or shouldn't impact a person's life too much, and both those thoughts are bold face lies! While much of parenting is fun, some is not, and the not fun parts can start as early as 6 months with the cio method. All four of ours cried it out and I think they are all either fully functioning adult members of society or teens well on their way!!! It seems like an eternity now, I know, but it will get better and everyone will be the happier for it. I am thinking of you right now and sending up a little prayer for strength and stamina for you!