“I need you mommy”… these words are uttered by my youngest… a lot. Particularly when in her bed having waked for the day, sometimes whimpered in the middle of the night, whined when she is cranky and tired or mewed just when she feels she “needs” me for some toddler reason. She is two. We have taken away her nap for the most part because, as a SAHM, she doesn’t have to get up at the ass crack of dawn to be with a sitter all day and can sleep in until 8 or 9 in the morning. If she sleeps in and takes a nap she is difficult to get to bed before 10, and that’s no good for mommy or her. Some days I give her a half hour or 45 min because she just really stinkin needs it, and other days she may be fine. Sometimes if we are running errands she will catch a cat nap in the car. Today, in the throes of one of her fits while whining, crying and saying, “I need you mommy” someone said to me, “So you think you still aren’t making her insecure by sleeping with her?” I was genuinely baffled. “Why cuz she’s two and having a fuss fit?” “No- because she needs you.” My answer was quick and sure.”No.”
But now this lingering doubt is hanging over my shoulder… am I making my daughter insecure?
My 2nd daughter has always been a better sleeper than my first, but she did go through a phase where all my progress of her falling asleep on her own became lost, and for a window of time, the only way I could get any real sleep was to take her downstairs and sleep with her on the couch. Why I never thought to do that with my oldest, who was the real test as a sleeper is beyond me. With my oldest, I roughed the nights out on the over-sized, rocking recliner we had in her room and barely slept. Luckily, that phase has mostly passed with my youngest, but the other night she did it again and after an hour I gave up. My hanging out in the chair in her room til she fell asleep in her bed just wasn’t working. She does fall asleep in my arms each night, but I put her down as soon as I think it’s safe and she is sleeping mostly through the nights.
I’d have loved to let her “cry it out” and learn to put herself to sleep, but that just didn’t seem to work for
my husband our family. She was going to sleep on her own for quite some time, and after all the struggles with my oldest, I was really proud of that. The only way I was able to get my oldest to go to sleep by herself was because I had my second, and I would have to go and put #2 down, and the oldest usually just fell asleep waiting for me to come back to her room when I was done. I know there are a lot of things I do on a daily basis that are “wrong” according to someone somewhere, but the question of making my daughter insecure keeps looming over my shoulder. What about all the research that says co-sleeping is positive? What about the fact that on most nights and for most of her life she does sleep alone in her bed without me?
She is only two.
My head is a cyclone of what ifs, shoulds and should nots. The turbulence of my thoughts is enough to trigger the “take a seat” warning on any plane. As I pilot through this trip called motherhood, one which, may I add, no one can possibly give you enough information about, vaccinations for, or clue as to how it will utterly and completely change your whole world, mindset and everything else about yourself, I feel a need to call ground control and see what their view on my situation is. However, I drove myself nuts constantly researching with my oldest, and just don’t want to do that any more. So I’m hijacking this mommy plane and going to attempt to fly off the radar.
Every time I hear my baby say, “I need you Mommy,” I cringe a little now with a fear that lurks in the background, like a crazy politician over my shoulder. But beneath it all I just keep trying to remind myself that my daughter does need me. She is two, and she isn’t always going to need me in the capacity that she does now. She can and will grow into an independent, secure girl and woman whether it be sleep related issues or real world.
Mommyland Tower, United FlyMom2 with you on the localizer.
United FlyMom2, roger, cleared to land.
Cleared to land, United FlyMom2, but going to do so whether you permit or not.