|Could you let that sweet face cry?|
Arya is almost 5 months old (crazy right?). The window for sleep training and the need for it are quickly approaching. All of the pseudoscientists and parenting authors seem to agree that the ideal time for sleep training is between 4-6 months, any sooner and your kid will probably develop some sort of attachment disorder and carry a blankie around with him until puberty. Any later and your kid will probably become some sleep deprived sociopath. So you see, there's really only a small window for a child to become a productive member of society and I don't want to miss it.
But guys, I really don't want to sleep train.
I suppose I should clarify because there are a ton of ways to sleep train without crying: pick-up-put-down, drowsy, but awake, bedtime routine. Sleep training is really just teaching a baby to go to sleep on her own. I just don't know if I have the heart to let her cry. I don't mind letting her fuss a bit or whine a little in her crib before I go in and get her. I mean that full on crying where they lose their breath, so sad to me.
I used Weisbleuth's method of Cry It Out (CIO) with Isabella when she was 6 months old and it worked wonders. Isabella was a keeper, but not a sleeper. Within three nights she was sleeping through the night. The first night she cried for 20 minutes, the second and third barely even 10. But she was up 3-4 times a night every night. She really needed it and I knew she did. Arya's not that bad. She's not that good, but she's not that bad.
Here's the thing. She's my last little baby. Our family is finished growing and I don't want her to cry for me in the night. This time I know how fast it goes. I know that the days are long, but the years are short. I know that one day she won't want me in the middle of the night and there will be nothing I can do to keep her fears away, but right now I'm all that she needs.
A part of me selfishly wants to keep her dependent on her mama because I see how independent Isabella has become. How sometimes I'll ask her if she wants me to make her lunch and she'll just go to the fridge and grab a yogurt all by herself. I'll ask her if she wants me to take her to the bathroom and she just says, "I can go by myself." So proud and so sad at the same time. I wish I would have lingered over her babyhood a bit more than I did, instead of rushing it to the next milestone.
I know that Arya needs to sleep, and honestly we do too. But I'm just feeling really conflicted about letting her cry. I know Andy is all for it and I always was a big proponent for it as well, but it just doesn't feel right this time. Not yet anyway. Maybe I haven't hit my breaking point yet. Maybe I'm a different type of mother this time around, a bit softer. Maybe what they say is really true and no two babies are alike. We'll have to see, but for right now I'm shelving the cry it out. It doesn't feel right to me right now and that's what I'm going on.