Yesterday was not a good day for Little Man A. Yesterday, I was the meanest mom ever and didn't give him back his pacifier for his nap. You see, for the past 2 or 3 months now, Little Man A has been throwing his pacifier and his lovey (we lovingly call "Jeffrey" because he's a giraffe) and his wind up music stuffed giraffe (no I don't have a thing for giraffes - it just happened that way) overboard while taking a nap. He thinks it's a real hoot to have mommy come back in, collect all his valuables off the floor, and look at him in a stern way. Which does not work at all, by the way.
Little Man A doesn't use his pacifier throughout the day, only when he takes a nap. And he definitely does not use it at night. That was one thing I wanted to make sure of when we started putting him to bed awake. Actually he did it more himself the first couple of times. He used to fall asleep with the bottle and we would gently put him to bed after he burped. One night, he decided to wake as soon as an inch of his skin toughed the mattress. Since then, he's been putting himself to sleep every night. Sometimes he'll lay there and talk for a few minutes and toss and turn, just like anyone else does before they get comfy for the night.
But, yesterday, I knew he was thinking it was a game and with him fast approaching the year milestone, I knew he knew what he was doing. So after checking on him to make sure he didn't poop his diaper, I left the room without giving him his pacifier. I left it under his bed where he threw it, more so he wouldn't drape himself over the side of the railing because he could see his beloved pacifier abandoned in the middle of the room.
It took him about an hour and a half before he finally settled down and fell asleep. Yes, I know - I'm the meanest mom ever! Of course when he woke up, he was upset as well. So I tried to comfort him by rocking him, but he probably thought I was trying to put him back to sleep, so that made things worse. I finally took him out of his room and to a living room window to show him the leaves blowing outside. Once he calmed down a little and started to smile, I warmed up his bottle and got him fed, which obviously all that crying made him really hungry.
While I was holding him, I started to feel really guilty for what I had done. I've heard of parents letting the child have the pacifier until the child is ready to give it up, not the other way around. And since Little Man A only gets to have it while taking his naps and in the car, I wasn't too concerned about him weaning himself away from it later. But when I saw how excited and funny he thought it was for me to come back into the room while he was suppose to be taking a nap, I knew he thought it was a game.
I started to think, "Does he realize I would do anything for him? Does he realize how much I love and adore him?" This is a human being that I NEVER thought I would be holding and caring for and for that matter loving probably even more than I love my own husband (sometimes). So I really hope he does. And I hope I show him every single day and every single minute that I love him with all my heart.
They say the sooner you make them give up their pacifier, the easier it will be and they won't remember a thing. So far today, besides the fact of waking up at 5:45 am (I really can't start my day any earlier than 7am), he seems to be in a good mood. And on top of that, while I was feeding him his oatmeal with fruit breakfast, he signed "more" before opening his mouth! I have been working with him for the past 6 months with a few signs, "more', "milk", "please", "food"... and he's finally signing "milk" and now "more"! I felt so proud!!