Tuesday, November 1, 2011

mommy instincts

Since Luke was born, I've become obsessed well-versed with parenting theory.
Attachment.  Baby Wise.  On-Demand.  By-the-clock.
Cry it out.  Extinction.  Graduated extinction. 

Luke is a great sleeper.  Has been for quite some time.
He goes to bed around 7:15, wakes up around 6 in the morning, nurses, then goes back to sleep until 7:30 or 8:00.  Amazing.

He's also capable of soothing himself to sleep.  We've worked hard on this, and although he's not totally consistent, he's pretty darn good.

Last night, he woke up at 3:00 am.  Very uncharacteristic.
I let him cry for 15 or 20 minutes, the crying got louder, so I went into his room.

No fever.  No poop.  No vomit.  Room not too cold.  Not too hot.
I put his paci in and rubbed his back.  He was quiet.  I left the room.

We repeated this entire process again just a few minutes later.

And then, on the third round of crying, and I mean, crying, I began to pray.
Lord, bring peace and calming and comfort to this baby.
Protect him, soothe him, love him.
Give him exactly what he needs to go back to sleep.

And then, there it was.
The still small voice, whispering.  I created him to need you.  

Really, God?  Because I've read some books by some pretty big wig M.D.s that say he should cry himself back to sleep.   

Again.  I created him to need you. 
It was unmistakable.

I went into his room, picked up my baby, gave him a paci and wrapped a light blanket around him.
He put his head on my shoulder (which he never does!) and whined just a little bit before he was quiet again.

I held him like that for several minutes.  Told him I loved him, rubbed his back, and laid him back down in the crib.  He was asleep.

Dr. Weissbluth, Baby Wise fanatics, friends with solid opinions:  I did the right thing.  For my kid.  In that moment. 

My friend Kathryn once told me, listen to your mommy instincts.  It's the single best piece of advice I've ever been given. 

I've failed one hundred times and I will fail again.  But when I listen to the One who gives me mommy instincts, I can only get it right. 


  1. This is so what I needed to hear today after a night up and down and second guessing everything. So amazing how God can guide you to what you need to read or hear. Thank you for this.

  2. I agree with traci :)
    You are mommy, and only you know what he needs. Nobody else. That's what I tell myself anyways...

  3. SO true! The best one to care for a child is it's mother! God designed it that way...trusting in that truth helps me even as mine are older.