Tough love – update #4

17th October 8.10 pm

Lily is getting the point quite quickly.

She didn’t wake until 1.30 am this morning, and although she did cry and protest for around 15 minutes or so, she never came out of her room or indeed her bed. This is becoming the norm, and ok, she still isn’t sleeping through, but that’s fine.

She was quite upset with me, as after I had been in to comfort her, I did not go back in, despite her increasing protests, which to be honest were more tantrum that pain! As I said, she continued for around 15 minutes or so. Allan had to get up for something, and he popped in and gently asked her to settle down, which she promptly did. If I had gone in she would have no doubt, squeezed a little tear out and begged for cuddles and kisses. The little minx knows exactly how to tug on those heart strings!

She was awake-ish for around an hour, as Allan had heard her mumble from her room a couple of times, but again she remained in bed, calm and peaceful. Amazing!

The next time we saw her was around 7 am, when she came in to our room with her cheery, “Good morning mummy. Good morning daddy”, we couldn’t help but be happy and return the good tidings.

I’m not going to have a flawless child. I wouldn’t want that. I love her sparkle and cheeky manner, her wonderful charm and terrific sense of humour.

I just want things to resemble normality for all of us. For any of us not to be so tired, that our days are affected so badly that we are griping and moaning at each other, day in and day out. It isn’t out of purely selfish reasons that I want her to sleep more. Lily’s life is being affected too.

18th October 8.30 am

Lily and I have been up since 7 am. She came through to our room, chomping on her dummy, her hair all tousled and said, “good morning mummy”. The fact that it was 7am is wonderful.

The last time either one of us saw her awake was around 10.30 pm when she woke, a little upset. Allan went to soothe her, and to put her back to bed. There she remained until she popped her head round the door this morning.

I scooped her up in to our bed for a cuddle for 10 minutes before we got up, ensuring she was praised, and praised for sleeping all night. Lily acknowledged that she was indeed a good girl and promptly asked for a treat for being so good! She loves going to the cafe, so we took her there for lunch.

Despite the fact that I’m still sleeping in ‘waiting for Lily to get get up,’ mode, that’s by the by. As long as Lily is getting her much needed rest, I know she will have a better day for it, and the likelihood of a tantrum, or lack of sleep fuelled whiny day, is almost nil.

10.30 pm

Lily came to the top of the stairs. She was a little disorientated, but I picked her up, where she cuddled in to me, before I put her back to bed. She neither acknowledged me or complained about being put back to bed. I cuddled in to her for a few seconds, then left the room. She won’t remember getting up, I know, as she was still half asleep.

Our day today was lovely. Just seeing her play so patiently without getting frustrated through tiredness was great. We even role played a little this afternoon. Usually by the afternoon she is so grumpy and tired, that it is very difficult to keep her amused.

I’ve noticed that Lily is eating better at dinner time too. Less tired and able to enjoy her meals perhaps?

For the doubters, and I have some. It’s working for us. It’s working for Lily, which is more important.

I don’t care if she wakes every single night. I want her to be comfortable being on her own. To fall asleep independently. We’ll happily go to her – once – to settle her.

I don’t want several hours every night of her being awake, exhausted and demanding. I don’t want her to sleep in our bed, or on the floor.

I want Lily to know that boundaries are a good thing. That consistency is important.

That we love her very being, and will do whatever we can to show her this every single day.

That’s it. A week of ‘tough love’. It’s not been as tough as I expected, and the results have proven to be positive.

The fact that I have a happy little girl who finds joy and fun in her day is testament to that.

14 thoughts on “Tough love – update #4

  1. I’m so annoyed (as if it’s happening to me!) that there are some who are leaving you rude comments about this. As her mother, YOU know your daughter more than ANYONE else in this world, especially those who claim to be “experts”. How we bring up our children is no ones business but ours. Honestly people! … Anyway, so glad things are working out for you and Lily! Know that I’m thinking of you guys and cheering you on.

    • Thanks Dean. The comments were not on my posts but directed at me on Lulastic’s post she wrote this week. I said that I was following a tough love method, but agreed with others on the post that the printed advice sheet Lulastic had shown on the post, given to someone about sleep training your baby, was harsh. People just assumed Lily was a baby, and that we were pretty much abandoning her to a whole night time of screaming and shutting the door and ignoring her. The two ladies who were quite mean, really should have made the time to read the blog in it’s entirety before making assumptions.
      I’m not hurt at all by the comments, just flabbergasted by one dimensional opinions.
      P.S Lily slept all of last night too 😉

  2. Glad to hear that you have found what works for your daughter and your family, and hopefully soon you will be able to get some sleep yourself too. Thanks for commenting on my blog, it’s good to hear from someone who is making it through to the other side of the sleepless nights, hope it continues for you

    • Thank you. It’s been a roller coaster 20 odd months (and some…it’s all a blur) 😉
      It’s been much easier than I ever thought I imagined it to be, and wish we had done something sooner. I’ve not been consistent at all, and no wonder my poor girl wasn’t sleeping properly!

  3. Tough love is certainly something children need from time to time. The do need consistancy and routine and as you say boundaries. Boundaries are very important and I’m glad your week of dishing out tough love hasn’t been as a tough as you thought!!

    Thanks for linking up with #MMWBH xx

  4. My son never slept through the night until he was 9 months old, and even then he didn’t do it every night. I was an exhausted mess, so I can imagine how it is for you with your daughter at 2.5 years. I think at this stage you are entitled to try to get her to sleep through, and your methods certainly sound gentle to me.

    • Thank you.
      I have had some negative comments (via another blog) which were made without reading any of my posts.
      I am confident my girl will succumb to a full nights sleep more often in the days and weeks to come.
      Small steps and all.

  5. LagosMum says:

    Am only just catching up on all this. Good for you. Am so glad it’s working for you. You are a stronger lady than me! Consistency is one of my problems too. I need to get my butt in gear and start making some changes!

    • It isn’t easy at all. I still struggle. After an epic 40 minute tantrum yesterday, my heart was racing and I could feel my temper rising. I sat her in my bedroom and told her to come down when she had finished! She did eventually.
      Consistency is quite difficult to follow when you are being hounded persistently by errant toddlers!

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