on the advice of many, i attempted to leave leon to settle himself. over six months of sleepless nights and overly wakeful days has taken a toll on us. the fact that i am the only person who can get him to fall asleep (via nursing in bed) has made it difficult to share the work of parenting.
so i nursed him, snuggled with him for 15 minutes in his side-car crib, nursed him again, patted him on his back until he closed his eyes. and then i crept away. the crying began immediately. a loud, angry, jagged cry. i kept the door cracked open so i could watch him. he passed his lovey from one hand to the other, his cries continuing. i looked at the clock. 1 minute. 2 minutes. 3 minutes. the cries intensify. 4 minutes. i go into the kitchen for a glass of water. when i return, he is crawling from his crib across the mattress and toward the pillow barricades. the cries are moving from protesting to truly hysterical. 5 minutes. i decide to go in.
he's face down in vomit, the bed is covered in a mixture of sweet potatoes and milk. i feel sick and angry with myself. i pick him up, take off his clothes, yank the sheet and mattress cover off. in the bathroom, i gently wash his face off and look for new sheets. when i put him in the crib so i can put the new sheet on, he begins wailing inconsolably. i pat him, pick him up, put him back down. the sobbing starts as soon as i detach myself from him. it's as if he believes i'm going to abandon him again.
not all babies cry so much that they vomit. i didn't realize it could escalate so quickly. i figured babies who throw up from crying it out are the ones left alone for 30-60 minutes or more--which i refuse to do. but 5 minutes? i feel like a terrible person.
not to mention he fell off our low bed this morning--hence the new barricades. i was napping with him for over 2 hours when i decided to make a quick bathroom run. in the 30 seconds that i was gone, he managed to wake up, roll 4 times and onto the floor. THUNK. and then wailing. he's fine. i've been watching him like a hawk, and so far so good.
but still. i am at the end of my rope. nearly 7 months of sleep issues, an intense temperament, and an inability to do my own work (which really needs to be done if i want a job come august). i give up. it'll sort itself out eventually. i'm tired of trying to make it happen before he's ready. the only thing that matters is that he gets quality sleep. even if that means nursing him til he falls asleep, napping beside him, and putting our mattresses on the ground.