Thursday, July 8, 2010
Well, we did it ... and I'm only glad after the fact
Last Saturday was the day. We had been putting it off for too long, hoping that some research would fall from the sky that mimis (pacifiers) are actually recommended for kids over the age of 3.
Last Saturday was the day and I'm not sure who was more sad, me or Luke. Actually, I do know. It was me. I have yet to understand why I was so attached to these plastic things, but I was. I loved them because Luke loved them. And I didn't want to take away something that brought him so much joy and comfort. Maybe it's as simple as that.
Thanks be to God, Luke has handled this parting so much better than I ever expected. 10 days later and he hardly asks for them and we are back to him falling asleep by himself at night. I expected weeping and gnashing of teeth.
A few families shared with us their tactic of snipping the ends off the mimis, so that's what we did. Roger snipped it and then showed Luke, letting Luke lead. "Why is my mimi broken?" Once he said that, we ran with it. Rog explained that when mimis get old, they break. Then he asked him if he wanted to keep them even though they were broken, or if he wanted to send them away and get a new toy. Of course, not having full capacity to foresee future feelings, Luke picked the new toy.
We put him in his crib for nap/quiet time (we knew he wouldn't nap), and he happily played with his new toy for an hour in his bed.
At bedtime, we decided he could fall asleep in our bed for the first night without his mimis. He never really cried, but for about 30 minutes, he whined and whimpered and asked for them. He told us he couldn't do it and that "this was not working". We told him yes, he could do it and mommy and daddy were going to help him. And then? Then he fell asleep.
The next 4 or 5 nights one of us would sit in his rocking chair in his room until he fell asleep. But he would eventually fall asleep. It helped that he wasn't napping during the day, so he was more tired at night. He talked about it a lot while he tried to fall asleep, not yet confident that he could do this. But we knew each night he was gaining confidence and finding other ways to soothe himself.
By night 6, we were only staying in his room with him for 5 minutes and then leaving him to fall asleep on his own. Amazing. I really never thought it would go this smoothly.
Two mimi stories to finish up this post:
One afternoon he was down at my mom's house and I had asked her to try and nap him since he had gotten up so early that morning. After lying in bed for about 45 minutes, he got up and went to the drawer where my mom kept her mimi stash. Of course, she had gotten rid of them, but when he opened the drawer he told her, "Nonna, I can smell my mimis in here."
On Sunday, a week after we had tossed them, Luke was playing in our bonus room while I was in the adjoining laundry room. "Mamaaaa, I have a surprise for you!" he sing-songed as he came to where I was. He had something behind his back and a mischevious glint in his eye.
"Look what I found!" he said as he pulled out a fully-functional pacifier from behind his back. I had no idea what to do.
He put it in his mouth for a couple of seconds and then pulled it out. "It's not broken!" he declared.
"You're right, honey, but look how dirty it is! Yuck!" I placed it on the counter and prayed that would be the end of the matter. (Hey, there's no manual for this stuff! It was the best I had.)
And you know what? That was the end of the matter. He turned around and went back to playing.
So, here we stand. Mimi-less and doing okay. I may need therapy, but Luke is doing just fine.