Monday, September 27, 2010

Cry it Out

Several months ago at Maggie's 9-month check up at the doctor, the subject of sleep came up. For several months I had been getting up with her multiple times a night. Mainly because in my mind it was easier for everyone for me to nurse her back to sleep and be back in bed 10 minutes later. However, I was really starting to feel the toll of getting up two or three times a night. Our doctor strongly encouraged me that we needed to "sleep train" Maggie, saying that she thought that it would only take a few nights of crying it out and she would be cured. Sure enough, it only took one night and a rough bedtime and she was sleeping through the night like clockwork!

Now, after an extended period of time traveling back and forth to Cleveland and also being very sick last week, we are unfortunately now at the point of needing to re-train her again.

Is there anything more excruciating than listening to your child cry and intentionally NOT going to comfort them?? As I lay in bed at 2 a.m. Saturday night thinking about this, I thought about how many new and different emotions and responses parenthood produces. Then, I started thinking about something I read in my Bible Study this week about us being God's children. And suddenly all of my feelings toward Maggie took on a whole new meaning. God loves us as his CHILDREN. Just like I love my daughter.

As I pondered this refreshed view of God in a new light, my mind was suddenly brought back to the moment as I listened to Maggie crying. It seemed so WRONG not to go in there. Yet I lay there continuing to tell myself, "This is for her own good."

Then I started thinking about our current situation with Gary's job and living in different places, etc. There have been a lot of hard days in the past two months. It occurred to me that this is perhaps a season that God is using to "train" us, and even though it's hard, it is for our good. We just need to cry it out. It doesn't mean that God doesn't hear us or care about our house selling, but as our Father, he knows best, and we need to trust that his love runs deeper than our day-to-day comfort or happiness.

Things are always worse in the darkness of the night. But morning always comes.

I hope that through this time we learn to sleep deeply and peacefully through the darkness of the night, secure in our knowledge that our Father is there - sometimes right outside the door - and will be there in the morning. What a comfort to think about God being there even when we can't see him. How reassuring to think about him crying with us, longing to comfort us, but not doing so out of his deep, deep love for us.

Hopefully, we will grow to be more like him and a little more at peace next time the darkness comes.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

So Proud

Even though she has no idea what it means, doesn't she look So Proud? Except for the last one, where she looks like she is way too cool for school and totally ready for the photo shoot to end.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Happy Day

The weather has taken a turn for the fabulous recently. We took advantage and walked to Dunkin Donuts for breakfast this morning. As you can see, it was a big hit.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

The Art of Conversation

Every night my mother-in-law goes walking with her neighbor. Maggie took an exceptionally late nap today, so it was decided that she should go with on the walk tonight, too.

Having dinner alone with Gary was only about ten million times better than I thought it would be. It was amazing to have a conversation that consisted of more than, "Do you want more [blank]?" "Do you want more water?" "More?" "MORE??" "What DO you want?" "DON'T YOU THROW THAT ON THE FLOOR!!"

Granted, I love having dinner together as a family. I love how our meals our filled with laughter at the funny things Maggie does.

Sometimes it's just nice to remember how to talk to each other.

Labor Day Weekend

We had a fabulous Labor Day weekend, made even better by the fact that my sister-in-law and her husband were here! It was a full, FULL weekend...marked with a wedding open house to celebrate the Happy Couple, the Cleveland Air Show and the Joffrey Ballet.

The Air Show was particularly fun and memorable. Maggie surprisingly kept her earphones on without a fight, and even fell asleep during the Blue Angels - the loudest part of the show!

This post is direct evidence that I need to be a little more intentional about my documenting...considering that I don't have pictures of anyone BUT Maggie. Hm.

Baby vs. Grinch - Eleven Months

Is it just me, or is the Grinch started to look small-ish??

Eleven Months

Considering we are only about a WEEK away from Maggie's birthday, I figured I should probably post her 11 month pictures/update.

This has been a weird couple of months for our family. We continue to split our time between Chicago and Cleveland in order to maximize our time together as a family while also maintaining our life (and our house) in Chicago. It's been neat in some ways to go back and forth since the grandparents in the respective areas notice SO MANY changes in Maggie even when we've only been gone for a week or two. And it's true! She's changing so much.

She continues to be more and more mobile. She's not walking yet, but continues to come up with creative ways to get from place to place.

Her comprehension is going through the roof. We are suddenly realizing that she understands a LOT of what we say. It's been really fun to start to communicate with her verbally. And frustrating when we know that she is deliberately ignoring us. :) She has several "tricks" that she will do for us - "so big," "shimmy shake" (looks like she's shaking her head no), and is getting better at waving.

Opening and closing things continues to be a favorite thing to do, and can be almost guaranteed to amuse her.

She is also showing a sudden interest in books - even handing them to us to read to her (and she'll actually listen!), and can occupy her almost longer than any toy on our long car trips in the car.

She still loves dogs, and has also started showing extreme interest in babies - baby dolls, pictures of babies in books, babies we see when we're out and about, etc. I have no idea where that came from. Guess it is just part of being a girl.

I anticipate the next couple of months will be full of landmark changes - walking, talking and molars. Oh, and hopefully moving.