Thursday, January 31, 2008
Mommy Learns Lesson
Lately we've been having problems at bedtime. Yes, yes. This is another Bunny Boop story.

So, the past three or four evenings, despite being obviously tired and ready for bed, Bunny has been adamantly reluctant to retire. She wants to cuddle. She'll stay in her room if I'm there, but she won't lay down. She screams. She rattles the gate on her crib. She gets irate.

For the first couple of nights, I put this down to her still having a cold and perhaps sleeping allowed the mucous to settle in her chest, or something.

Last night - EUREKA! - I finally figured it out.

Bunny Boop has developed a fear of the dark. This is why she doesn't mind rocking in the dark if I'm holding her and why my leaving the room is cause for panic. At least, this is my best current hypothesis. Last night I told her I wasn't going to play her game all night long. I left her in her room, turned on the bathroom light across the hall, and mostly closed her bedroom door, leaving a 2.5 inch gap.

This appeased her in a way that nothing else would. She plopped right down, cuddled up with bibi, and went to sleep.

15 minutes later I turned out the bathroom light. Seriously? She's never been afraid of the dark before, so this never would have occurred to me. And, before you think me horrid, she does have 2 nightlights in her room. It is just that she can't really see them from her crib, positioned as it is. They are the glowy sort that have a very flat profile (so that she won't play with them) to the wall.

Anyway, problem solved. It probably took me longer to figure it out than it should have; proving yet again that I am not an exceptionally good mother and reinforcing the fact that most of her problems are caused by me.

Crap. I am a bad mother.


posted by Phoenix | 11:55 AM


At 10:08 AM, Anonymous Dave said...

You are a good mom, Phoenix. Every parent has to learn the ropes -- though it would be nice if babies came with a manual.

My wife and I were clueless 17 years ago when our first child was born. Now we still are clueless while parenting her as a teenager. And our second child is completely different from our first one . . . so the things that worked for the first do not work for the second.

I'm not sure parenting is ever going to get comfortable. That's why we pray a lot.

Don't despair, though. As you already know, the blessings far exceed the work, worry, and fatigue.

You're doing just fine.


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