Well, Catherine and Shannon got here at 4:30 yesterday, and we left around 5:00. I had typed up some info about E for them: dinner and bathtime and bedtime stuff. He'd continued the trend of taking only two thirty minute naps (at 9:00 and 1:00 yesterday), which meant he was going to crash at 6:00. So I figured dinner would be at 5:00, bath at 5:30, etc. Everything went according to plan, and it sounds like they all had lots of fun, at least until bedtime. He wouldn't take the bottle (no surprise), and then Catherine took him back to his room and read him a book and rocked him. He was quiet but not asleep when she put him down, and he laid there quietly for several minutes but then started to cry. I had said that if he cried for longer than ten minutes with no pauses, they should go in and rock him again and then just keep repeating. The ten minutes was somewhat arbitrary on my part. I felt like I should give a certain timeframe that they could follow, and I didn't like the thought of him crying hysterically and being left in there for long. On the other hand, if he was just crying a little before falling asleep, that would be okay. Since they haven't heard him cry all that much, they would have no way of distinguishing how upset he was. So I settled on ten minutes. I honestly didn't think it would be an issue because I knew how tired he would be, and I was sure he would crash without too much trouble. Boy, was I wrong! When we called at 7:45 to let them know we were on our way home, he was still awake! They had done everything they could, but eventually brought him out and were just holding him and trying to keep him happy. When I walked (okay, ran) up the stairs, Shannon was holding him on the couch and he was watching the swing go back and forth with his eyes half open. Bless his heart. I proceeded to nurse him and of course he fell asleep within minutes. It's so very sweet, and I love nursing him more than anything (ANYTHING!), but it makes it hard for other people to soothe him, and that can be frustrating.
Anyway, this taught us quite a bit about him, I think. TJ and I were wondering beforehand if he knows other people yet (like his aunties and Gwen). I guess it's impossible to tell, but he obviously knew something was different last night. Duh, his boobies weren't there. That was probably clue #1. And it's no secret that the boy hates to sleep and struggles to fall asleep (whether we're holding him or he's in his crib). Maybe I should've figured that his not sleeping was a possibility. It also tells us (in a sort of backwards way) that our work over the past month to establish a routine has paid off. But what happens when the routine is disrupted? Are we creating a child who can't adapt well? How can we work on leaving him with other people when the opportunities to do so are so few and far between? And when he's still so dependent on breast milk? I honestly don't feel the desire to work on this with him right now, but I feel for the people who have to try to put him to bed on those rare occasions we go out. Maybe it'll get easier the less we nurse? (I'm pretty sure that's not true.) At least he's not totally dependent on nursing to go to sleep at night right now. It happens about 75% of time, I'd say. The rest of the time he's rocked and put down awake. I know the sleep training people would say this is how he should be put down every night.
The next time we have plans to go out is on May 30. Gwen's going to babysit. There's also the possibility that our friends Kay and Joel will babysit one night next month along with their baby, Jonas. They follow attachment parenting, so I don't feel comfortable asking them to let Eamon cry, even for a few minutes. They also don't use a rocking chair, so that would be totally foreign to them. They'll probably put both babies in Ergo carriers and go on a walk. And you know what, that's probably the best way for someone other than us to get E to fall asleep. Huh. Maybe we should've had Catherine and Shannon do that as a last resort. I hadn't thought about that, since it's not part of our nighttime routine.
In any case . . . it makes me happy when E gets to spend time with the people we love, and they get to know him better. He loves being around people and I think it's fun for him to be exposed to new ways of playing and being held.
This post seems very new mom-ish to me. What can I say.