There are gems to be found in that mountain of treasure. Take for instance the article reprinted in my next post, “Letting Babies Cry a Bit is OK” by Andrea Petersen.
Of tremendous interest to “mwaaa”…me, that is, the information contained in Petersen’s writing reminded me of my husband’s least favorite bedtime story.
Our family had recently returned from visiting relatives in Hawaii. Our daughter, then a toddler, had difficulty returning to her routine of sleeping alone in her crib. Bunking with mom and dad while away from home was probably to blame. We had no choice in the matter since space was scarce in my mother-in-law’s already overcrowded home.
I’d read in a book that was my parenting bible at the time, that I shouldn’t remove my child from her crib when she cried, begging to sleep in mine. Rather, I should return to her side in 20-minute intervals to comfort her until she fell asleep. This had worked before our vacation; I was certain it would continue to work again.
My husband was not as convinced. In fact, he was adamant it wouldn’t.
That was one of the very few times I angered my husband.
In utter disgust and disbelief, he stormed off saying he’d rather sleep downstairs if I didn’t give in to our daughter’s pitiful cries. And they were pitiful. Trust me. They were.
However monstrous I might’ve seemed to my loved ones at the time, I knew the long-term result would benefit our child. And it has.
My daughter has confidently traveled the country and Canada since she was 14, pursuing the dance career she now enjoys. She slept in dorms with strangers as roommates. Since she was 18 she has lived on her own, 3,000 miles separating her from us.
She still dreams of living abroad some day.
And as for our relationship?
I don’t suggest it’s my way…or the highway. Parents need to do what feels instinctively right in their guts.
…and my instincts suit my guts…just fine…