Friday, September 16, 2011

Winding Down

4:23. I'm getting the impression that most babies respond well to routine. Every parent probably has a particular way to aid a baby from wakefulness to dreamland and they follow that pattern because it works. What works for my baby bear?

We take it easy in the afternoon since mornings are generally pretty stimulating with the activity gym, belly time, and regular photo shoots. She was sleepy right after her 3:30 meal so I took her into the nursery, checked her diaper, and bundled her in the swaddle. After that her eyes brightened right up so we sat in the glider and I mimicked her facial expressions and gurgles. She loves this and I can tell her next big trick will be blowing raspberries since she watches carefully with shock and awe when I do it. She has already mastered blowing bubbles, making kiss noises, and of course sticking out her tongue. Although her smile is captivating, she makes one expression I can't match, which I can already tell will become her "get out of jail free" face to her Dada. Ah but here's the yawn. We're ready to work on snoozing!

I tiptoe over with her and shut off the light, put her on my shoulder and pat her back while making shhhh sounds for ten minutes. She takes this surprisingly well and relaxes deeply until she calmly allows me to rest her in her crib. I continue shushing, sit back in my chair, and prepare to wait five minutes to make sure she gets to sleep. We're almost there, Mama is relaxing, and then... she pees. So I change her and we start all over. Except this time the sweet shoulder patting has turned into the snuggle olympics. She writhes, climbs and flails in her snuggle time snooze sack but she does calm enough to take a 20 minute snooze.

And so, we do this in variations seven times each day. Even with the repetition, every day is still a new day. In fact, I think she just sneezed and did a raspberry at the same time.

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