Monday, September 29, 2014

Landry is SIX Months Old!

This little monkey turned SIX months old on Sunday, September 28, 2014.  What an amazing 1/2 of year we had.  First of all, this 1/2 year has been the fastest six months of my life.  Are you kidding me?  I had a baby SIX months ago?  Doesn't seem possible...feels like it was just yesterday I was bringing home my baby from the hospital.  Now here he is, in all his glory, sitting up like a big boy. 

He's the best.  There is no other way to put it.  I just love every second I get to spend with him.  He's amazes me everyday.  EVERY. DAY.  I'm so blessed to have him as a son, and so blessed to be his mother.

Once he has his well visit tomorrow at the doctors, I'll be back to update his "stats".  Until then, here are his monthly favorites and milestones:

- Landry is still loving his vegetables.  We haven't found a food that he has refused yet.
- Sitting up has become his new favorite position.  He still topples, but with daily practice he's going to be a pro in no time at all.
- He sits in his high chair for feeding times now.  No more reclined seating for this tatertot.
- We tried puffs, he enjoys them for sure, but he's not quite there yet with his motor skills to pick them up and put them in his mouth.
- He's in 6-9 month clothing.
- He still is not sleeping through the night.  We're working on it :)

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Why we are choosing not to let our baby "Cry it Out"

     It's simple.  I can't and I won't.  If Landry cries for even ONE read that correctly, ONE minute, I start to feel all types of panic.  The most time I have ever let him cry (I mean really cry, not whimper, like full on cry) was probably less than two minutes.  This feeling bubbles up inside me so quickly that my body reacts before I can even think, "let him cry."  I get up, and I comfort him my baby, and he stops crying.  He. Stops. Crying.  <----the goal, right?

     Landry is going to be six months old and he is not sleeping through the night.  Sometimes he even wakes every 2 hours.  People (mostly the ones that have let their child cry it out), tell me that it's habit that I have created, and that he doesn't actually need anything at all to make it through the night.  I can't justify that statement.  He's waking up and crying.  Babies can't talk.  What if he is waking up with a dry mouth and just wants a drink?  He can't verbalize, "Hey mom, can I have a sip of boob juice please?"  What if he just can't sleep from being over stimulated that day...we have all felt that way before.  He can't verbalize, "Mom, I can't sleep."  So until he can actually use words and tell me what is wrong, I will continue to get up in the night and comfort my child.

     To make myself feel better, I do what a lot of people do, and look for research showing why the "CIO" method isn't the right choice for us.  When I read articles about any parenting topic, I make sure to read the ones written by parents, people that actually have the experience of having a child.  I don't usually read research studies written by doctors or scientists, who think they know what it's like and use science to come up with a cookie-cutter formula that will work for all babies.  However, I will do what everyone else does, and find research that backs up what makes me feel better.  Maybe that's where I differ from a lot of people, I'm not afraid to admitting that I do that, especially when it comes to controversial parenting topics.  As many articles exist about why the CIO method isn't a good choice, there are the same amount if not more articles written as to why the CIO method does work, and that it creates independence.  Those articles were also written by people that have chosen to let their child CIO.  So yes, each article you read is most likely biased, but that's the point, right?  To read something to make yourself feel like less of a failure.

So, if you choose to, you can read the reasons below as to why I chose to let my child NOT cry it out.  And I have great pleasure in saying this...DO WHAT WORKS FOR YOU.  I don't care if you let your baby cry it out or's not my baby, and I'm not their mother.  Do what is your best interest for you and your baby, and I'll do what is in my best interest and what's best for my baby.  By no means is it to make you feel guilty if you have chosen to let your baby cry it out.  It's meant to make us mothers who choose not to let their baby cry it out, feel better, when a half a year later, are still getting up every two hours for their child.

Caution, reading these reasons might piss you off if you disagree with them.  And you can take your anger out on your laundry that needs folding, or floors that need sweeping...don't leave your negativy spewed out in the comments section.  It's a pure waste of energy.  Thank you.

(Many of the reasons were taken from

10 Reasons Why I will not let my baby "Cry It Out"

1) I'm awake anyway. 

      - I hear him crying, I'm awake.  Why sit in another room torturing myself with guilt when I can simply just go comfort him for whatever he needs and go back to bed?

2) It can cause harmful changes in a babies brain.
     - Babies cry. They cry to let us know that they need something. And when we don't respond to those cries, it causes them undue amounts of stress. Science has shown that stress in infancy can result in enduring negative impacts on the brain. Prolonged cries in infants causes increased blood pressure in the brain, elevates stress hormones, obstructs blood from draining out of the brain, and decreases oxygenation to the brain. Excessive crying results in an oversensitive stress system (likened to a faulty burglar alarm in one book) that can lead to a fear of being alone, separation anxiety, panic attacks and addictions. Harvard researchers found that it makes them more susceptible to stress as adults and changes the nervous system so that they are overly sensitive to future trauma. Chronic stress in infancy can also lead to an over-active adrenaline system, which results in the child using increased aggression, impulsivity, and violence. Another study showed that persistent crying episodes in infancy is linked with a 10 times greater chance of the child having ADHD, resulting in poor school performance and antisocial behaviour. However, if you consistently soothe your child's distress and take any anguished crying seriously, highly effective stress response systems are established in the brain that allow your child to cope with stress later in life.

3) It can result in decreased intellectual, emotional, and social development.

     - At an American Academy of Pediatrics meeting, infant developmental specialist Dr. Michael Lewis presented research findings demonstrating that “the single most important influence of a child’s intellectual development is the responsiveness of the mother to the cues of her baby.” More specifically, other studies have found that babies whose cries are ignored do not develop healthy intellectual and social skills, that they have an average IQ 9 points lower at age 5, they show poor fine motor development, show more difficulty controlling their emotions, and take longer to become independent as children (stay clingy for longer).

4)  It can result in a detached baby.
     - Researchers have shown that although leaving a baby to cry it out does often lead to the cries eventually stopping, the cries do not stop because the child is content or the problem has been alleviated. Rather, they stop because the baby has given up hope that a caregiver will respond and provide comfort. This results in a detached baby. Detached children are less responsive, appear to be depressed or "not there" and often lack empathy.

5)  It can make a child insecure.

     - Children whose caregivers are not consistently responsive and sensitive, often become insecure. Long-term studies have shown that secure individuals are more likely to be outgoing, popular, well-adjusted, compassionate, and altruistic. As adults, secure individuals are likely to be comfortable depending on others, can develop close attachments, and trust their partners. Insecure individuals, on the other hand, tend to be unsettled in their relationships, displaying anxiety (manifesting as possessiveness, jealousy, and clinginess) or avoidance (manifesting as mistrust and a reluctance to depend on others). Parents that use the cry it out method often do so because they are afraid that their children are becoming too dependent. However, an abundance of research shows that regular physical contact, reassurance, and prompt responses to distress in infancy and childhood results in secure and confident adults who are better able to form functional relationships.

6)  It might not even work at all.

     - Some babies will not give in. So instead of whimpering a bit and then drifting off to sleep as some supposed sleep experts would have you believe happens, they end up sobbing and sobbing and sobbing for hours on end. Some end up vomiting. Many end up shaking so hard and become so distraught that once their parents realize that CIO is not going to work, the baby is shaking uncontrollably and hiccuping, too distressed to sleep and too distraught to be calmed down even by a loving parent.

7)  Even if it "works", chances are you will have to do it more than once.

     - I can't imagine putting my child through one or several nights of inconsolable crying to get him to sleep and I certainly can't imagine having to do it over and over again. However, that is the reality for many parents. I hear people tell me that they always let their child cry for thirty minutes to go to sleep. Or that they have to start the CIO sleep training process all over again after each round of teething, each growth spurt, each developmental milestone.  No thanks.

8)  I struggled to have a baby.

     - Four failed fertility treatments later, I finally received the most precious gift God can give you.  Do you know how devastating it is to struggle to have a child?  You don't, unless you, yourself, have been through it, first hand.  So when my miracle is screaming in the next room, for me, you can bet your ass I'm running over there.  I'll never take my baby's presence for granted. 

9)  It won't be like this forever.

      - I know that it might be a long time until I can say my baby is sleeping through the night.  But he eventually will.  It's not like I'll have a 9 year old who wakes up every two hours and wants to be fed.  I can wait this time out.  I was designed to respond to the needs of my child.  And I will honor that, and be grateful that I'm able to have this time with my baby.

10)  Because who wouldn't wake up to this: