Waiting it out
Right now I'm cooking oatmeal, though it's been so long I've completely forgotten HOW to cook oatmeal, and then I'm going to feed it to Emma before bedtime because I need to feel like I'm doing SOMETHING about her rotten sleeping habits. Actually, "habits" is not the right word since she's completely unpredictable. Two nights ago she slept through, last night she was up from 2:30 to 4:30. Fun times!
I won't bore you with the technical details of the unpredictable sleep - you've read them all before, and probably in this very place. SNORE. (Ha! There is no snoring around here! Not from ME anyway! *eyes Phillip maliciously*)
We are STILL swaddling her and I KNOW but THAT IS HOW WE GET HER TO SLEEP. Phillip wants to do some sort of unswaddled boot camp this weekend and I am, of course, dreading it. I've taken a sort of hands off approach to sleep, mainly because, with all three of my kids, nothing we did seemed to have any effect. We did have Jack cry it out around seven months, but I remember having to redo it three or four times afterwards. Molly was our best sleeper, but you remember me writing about how she refused to GO to sleep until midnight? Horrible! But there was nothing WE could do. My big strategy for things like this is Wait It Out.
But you can't wait out unswaddling. That is something I actually have to do. LAME.
Phillip, if you are interested, takes an opposite approach. LET'S TRY ALL THE THINGS. (AND FIGHT ABOUT THEM IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT.)
I think one thing that's been hard about Baby Number Three is the fact that Babies Number One and Two were decidedly NOT babies anymore. We were completely out of the baby stage. I didn't think this was a big deal, as I adore babies and loved the infant stage and wept over my babies getting older each month. BUT IT IS REALLY STINKING HARD. Abiding by the nap schedule (well, what little nap schedule we have), the separate feeding, the immobility, the waking up all night, even the stupid bucket seat - it's hard to go back. I'm just saying. There's definitely a part of me that thinks this would have been easier had we had Emma a little sooner, when we were still in the thick of baby/toddlerness and still used to the drill. But then I might have had three under three or three under four and I have no doubt that would have entailed a whole different set of parenting woes.
GO EASY ON YOUR POOR MOTHER!
I'm also having somewhat of a rough time with Jack and I can't figure out what to do about THAT either, except Wait It Out (And Attempt Consistency In The Meantime). I'll be the first to say that I am a less than stellar disciplinarian. I'm bad at consistency, I forget what I said before, I'm not too methodical, and every time I send him to a corner it's a DIFFERENT corner which I think is pretty indicative of my discipline practices right there. CANNOT DECIDE WHAT TO DO! WILL TRY IT ALL!
But lately it seems like Jack just flits from one thing-I-don't-want-him-to-do to another-thing-I-don't-want-him-to-do. Don't manhandle Emma. Don't bang on the piano. Don't throw pillows at your sister. No, you can't have a snack. Stop shouting. Don't jump on the couch. Don't hang on the chair. Don't tip the chair back. Don't sit that way in the chair. Clean up the markers. No, you can't have the iPad. ALL! DAY! LONG! Even on preschool days, the minute he gets home he's causing problems with his sister. (Who, I have to admit, has the sensitivity of the Princess and the Pea and is constantly in tears ANYWAY.)
Today I instituted some Snack Rules, which I know I should have done a long time ago I KNOW, because I cannot I CANNOT! deal with the incessant asking for snacks. He responded pretty well to that, so now I'm wondering if I should go around Instituting Official Rules for everything. Except I thought we already HAD rules about manhandling babies and jumping on furniture. So maybe not.
Sometimes I think I am just dealing with a case of Five-Year-Old [Noisy] Boy and there's really nothing to be done about THAT. Sometimes I think I need to give him more to do, more projects and activities, more structure. Except HECK NO, KIDDO. The last thing I want is Jack following me around all day demanding I provide him with his next ACTIVITY. He already does that with my mother.
Phillip came home a whole hour early today and all three rushed him and left me alone, so there's really no need for all this self-pity.