For the longest time, this used to embarrass me.
I was somewhat ashamed that my daughter who was 7 months old, 8 months old, 10 months old... (whatever stage we were at) wasn't sleeping through the night and was still waking to nurse.
She's still doing it. Still at almost 1 year old.
I thought I had come to terms with it and had made peace with my exhaustion. That was... until I went to a Mommy and Me sing-song class yesterday morning.
We had to go around the circle and say a "happy/sad" thing about our babies or our lives. You know... "We're happy because so-and-so is starting solids soon! We're sad because he hates his bath time!" Anyway. So it was my turn and I proudly claimed:
"We're happy because Anna's first birthday is on Friday. But we're sad because she's still not sleeping through the night". And then I waited for the nods, knowing smiles and murmurs of "I've been there" and "Tell me about it" or "Little Billy doesn't sleep well either".
Instead, I got awkward stares and the comment "That IS sad" from one Mom.
I was a bit shocked. My experience with fellow Moms so far has been almost completely positive. I haven't felt judged or like I was the only one who didn't know how to get their baby to sleep.
But yesterday I felt that embarrassment creeping back again. In my head I was thinking "That's it. I have to immediately get home and get this sleep thing under control."
So I rushed home, stood in my doorway looking at my baby smiling up at me, laughing and waving (her new favourite thing) and I realized that everything was okay.
My baby doesn't sleep well... and that's okay. She's happy and healthy and she loves her Mommy and Daddy.
We're doing just fine.
Of course, then I remembered the words of encouragement I've heard in the past from my amazing Mom friends. Things like "My kids never slept well... and the only thing that worked was to give them time to figure it out" and "We're in the same boat as you, Hez" and "I totally understand. My daughter/son didn't sleep well until she/he was 15 months old".
So I took a deep breath and picked up my baby who hates to sleep and gave her a big kiss. Then we went downstairs to play.