i'm pregnant and it's going to be a rollercoaster

Level of understanding – babies ‘get’ a lot more than I give them credit for August 11, 2010


So. Last night. I was ready to go to uni and was just giving you a breastfeed before running out the door. You’re totally used to the night-time routine, so you knew what was going on. Sometimes if I’m too slow (running behind schedule), you come into the bedroom and get on the bed and tell me, “boobie, boobie, boobie” with your sign language to let me know that it is time for boobie. And then when you’re done sometimes you let me know that you’re ready for the next step (going to Daddy to say goodnight), by signing “Daddy” and saying “DaDa” then signing “Goodbye” (waving). So you’re totally on-top-of-it generally. But last night just blew me away.

As we’ve been away a lot recently, and have had a cold/flu that has mutated at least 3 distinct times over the past 3 weeks, your sleep routine at night has got a little outta whack. You’d had a few months of sleeping right through again from 7pm to 7am, but when we went to Sydney and you got sick, you started waking, and because I was by myself, at someone else’s house, tired as I was sick, wanting you to get as many antibodies through my breastmilk as possible, and finally wanting you to just put on some weight due to the whole failure to thrive thing, I started feeding you in the middle of the night again to settle you quickly. And it was cold, so snuggling in one bed with you and co-sleeping again was nice (though yes, I didn’t get that much sleep as you are a little wriggly sleeper). Anyway, you’ve continued to be sick, we’ve gone away again, and it’s been cold at night, so the thought of going through the three nights of pain it would take to train you not to wake in the night again (we’ve been through it a few times now. It works, it takes 3 nights, but it’s still a hard 3 nights) wasn’t that appealing. So we haven’t done it yet.

Last night however, I thought I’d let you know as you were finishing your bedtime feed that I wanted you to sleep right on through.

Me to you: “Come on, have a little bit more boobie.  Because tonight I want you to have a big big big sleep.  No waking up in the middle of the night.  You need to eat some more boobie now so you can sleep all the way through the night and not get up until the morning.”

You: Pull off the boob.  Look at me.  I can almost see your thought process through your big eyes.  Then, signing, “Raining, Sing”.  “Raining, Sing”.

Me: “Yes, it is raining, can you hear the rain?”

You: looking a little frustrated. Trying again, this time with more vigour.  “Raining, Sing.  Raining, Sing”.

Me: “Ah, got it!  You want me to sing the ‘It’s raining, it’s pouring’ song.  Ok.”  I sing the song.  Then get to the last line “He went to bed and bumped his head and couldn’t get up in the morning“.

Then it dawns on me, you’ve managed to put two-and-two together and find an association with the word “morning” to let me know that you understood…  You do this a lot at the moment, randomly walking up to adults talking around you when they say a word you know (maybe in passing conversation with another adult, not to you) and signing the word like mad to let them know you were listening and understood (like “Bush Turkey”. You’d be surprised how much this comes up in conversation, but it does, and you let out a big roar and make a sign every time, chasing them like your dad taught you).  But this association of a song and a word is the first big leap I’ve noticed.

You: totally excited, smiling and laughing, knowing that I got it.  You madly sign, “more, more” when I finish the song.

So we sing a few more times until I let you know that is enough, and you tell me that’s ok by signing, “Daddy, Bye”.  So we go out and say goodnight to Daddy, I put you in your cot with your muslin wrap comforter, then close the door saying goodnight.

And you sleep all the way through to 5:45 am, when you wake up for a feed before sleeping again until 7.

What a perfect child!

Let’s hope it lasts!!!!

love you



2 Responses to “Level of understanding – babies ‘get’ a lot more than I give them credit for”

  1. dad Says:

    Bliss!!!!!! Sleeping through the night is a wonderful thing. Keep up the good work Mr. B.


  2. […] to think straight) of trying to get you back to sleeping right on through the night again after a period of not doing so (yes, it was a one-off that […]

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