Veggie Chicken and Mushroom Pie
January 2, 2017
camera on wooden table
#ABloggingGooodTime Week 30
January 4, 2017

What Should I Do…

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Parenting would be a whole lot simpler if it came with a manual wouldn’t it? As much as I adore Dr.Google at times, he really doesn’t always have the answer and I am fast coming to the conclusion that neither do I and this is rather alarming. I have said many a time that we put too much pressure on ourselves as parents to get things right but the reality is that we will make mistakes, just like our children will, because it is how we all learn… but that is not necessarily and easy thing to accept, is it? Lately, I have found myself thinking a couple of times “What should I do? I don’t know what to do!” In particular, one situation when it comes to my little girl – it is more a mother’s worry combined with a little bit of parental guilt thrown in for good measure that needs addressing…

Alyssa and I cuddling and smiling looking at the camera

As parents we are supposed to have all the answers – or at least that is what it feels like. Yesterday, I had such a day of wondering whether or not I was a good enough mother that I actually posted something about it on my Instagram and Facebook asking if others had ever felt this way too and of course they had.

Young alyssa sleeping on mummys chest

The problem I have been having at the moment is to do with Alyssa’s sleep and her bedtime routine. Now, if you read my blog regularly you will know that just before Christmas, we did our own method of sleep training which worked marvelously and for the most part has completely changed our lives as we are both getting a lot more sleep and my shoulders don’t feel like they’re about to break (you can read about it in Sleep: We Did It Our Way!) However, part of that routine was for her to still have a bedtime snuggle with me on my bed and to drink half her milk there and to finish it in her cot where she would fall asleep. Over the Christmas period, I didn’t have a bed as we had family staying so I was forced to put her straight to bed with her full bottle and simply stroke her face and say goodnight as I always have… and it worked fine, she went straight off to sleep, or had a little chat with herself and then went off.

Mummy lying with baby stroking her face

Once the family had gone this put me in a quandary about what I should do – should I return to our previous routine of having her with me for a cuddle and then putting her down, or as it had worked should I simply put her down and say goodnight as I had been doing over Christmas. This may seem like such a silly and small thing to you but for me it has been a huge deal and I am still in two minds as to what I should do or should have done. If she goes to sleep when I put her down on her own, shouldn’t I be encouraging this as it is good for her to be able to go off to sleep independently? However, at the same time, will my daughter be upset or wonder why mummy no longer “wants” to give her a big cuddle before she goes to bed and what if she feels just a little bit sad about that? And what about me…. what happens if I am sad about it too?

It is so difficult isn’t it?! No matter what decision we make as parents it is hardly ever the right one for everyone, but I realised that I cannot really take into account my own feelings in this because it is about Alyssa and what she needs really. I did talk about it with my mum like I always do and some of my lovely friends and they pointed out that if she was upset or sad about going to bed without mummy then she would never fall asleep but more often than not she never cries out as she is tuckered out from all her adventures and is ready for dreamland. They have a fair point don’t they? I know that I can never sleep if I am too upset about something and as my little one seems to have no trouble dropping off, I guess the decision to let her get herself to sleep was the right one and we shall be continuing on this path it would seem.

Alyssa in a peach tutu and peach flower head band smiling

I have to admit, that I am a little sad about this and obviously I would never show that to Alyssa, but this is just another way that my little one is fast becoming not so little. She is a strong willed, independent little warrior princess who knows what she wants and I could not be prouder of her. I just hope that she doesn’t walk too much further ahead of mummy for a while yet… at the moment I can still feel her hand in mine. How about you? Have you had problems letting go of your little ones in someway?

58 Comments

  1. I feel you!! I have recently decided to stop rocking my now 2 year old to sleep because it’s been killing my back. We’ve done the gradual sssh sssh pat tummy/sssh lie down in the room / sit outside the room and now can get downstairs and just ssh from afar but it’s taken months! But on her 2nd birthday I rocked her at nap time and vowed it’d be for the last time. And I actually had a tear in my eye as I realised it’s all so nearly over. She’s a toddler now, and not my baby anymore. It’s hard for us mums. This week i am tackling nap time. On Tuesday she fell asleep upright in the corner of her cot!! Miss Belle wasn’t screaming for me, just whinged a bit then sat sucking her thumb and fell asleep. If she’d been hysterical I wouldn’t have left her. If Alyssa isn’t upset I think you’re doing the right thing. Stay strong! xxx

  2. Lucy At Home says:

    Oh it’s so tough – as parents, our whole job is to prepare our kids gently to be ready for the “big wide world” which means that we’re constantly encouraging them to be more independent, even though what we really want is to keep them in our arms forever. I really feel for you. But I agree – I’m sure Alyssa will have had lots of cuddles and snuggles with you through the day, and she will understand that now it is just time for bed. #ABloggingGoodTime

  3. It can be so hard to know what to do when it comes to sleep. I think you made the right decision – anything we can do to encourage them to go to sleep on their own is a good thing! That being said, the Popple still gets a breastfeed before bed, and I have to admit that I’ll be a little sad when she doesn’t want that anymore – my baby growing up and all that. #ablogginggoodtime

  4. It’s so hard not to second guess yourself at every turn isn’t it? I’d say if she’s going down fine then she’s not upset so you’re obviously doing everything right. I found a good routine to get into around this age (if you don’t already) is to cuddle up and read a story before she goes to bed, you get the cuddles and closeness you both need and she gets a nice calming lead into bedtime which although she doesn’t need it now it could be invaluable as she gets a bit older. This is one of my most treasured parts of the day. At the end of the day though, you just need to follow your instincts and trust that as her mummy, you really do know best x

  5. Becky says:

    Our routine sounds near identical to yours and as Rory’s now older he too has his entire bottle in bed. As it was me missing the cuddle and left feeling sad I’ve introduced a story and cuddle just before his bath. It gives him time to have a wind down and gives mommy time to have a much needed squeeze!
    It’s normal to doubt yourself but you sound like your doing amazing!
    #ablogginggoodtime

  6. Aww this really struck a chord and I could have written that let paragraph just about my teens. I have so many ridiculous emotions about Georgia turning 18 this year and the exciting life she has ahead of her – I need to let go – an I will do – but bloody hell it’s hard! Just like the sleep my lovely there are so many aspects of children growing that tug and tug at your heart strings all along the way. We have to make sure that we ae strong enough as mothers to let them go – oo there’s the title of my next blog post! #ablogginggoodtime

  7. I must say… I don’t know how you do it. Maybe with all the faith, and courage. But that’s parenting, wright?
    I, for one, not wanting to go through this transition, I trained my baby to sleep in his own cot since he was a newborn.
    Now, at almost four years old, I snuggle with him until he falls asleep 😉
    #ablogginggoodtime

  8. I constantly worry that I’m stopping my little one from becoming more independent because I don’t want to lose my baby! I spend most of my time as a mum doubting my decisions!!
    I hope you had a lovely Christmas

  9. Wendy says:

    Aww I remember this feeling all too well, I felt so sad when my oldest started going to sleep without the big cuddles. It is so good for you that your little lady is so happy to drop off by herself now, even if you feel a bit sad about it for now.xx #ablogginggoodtime

  10. Dad says:

    I felt like asking a midwife for a manual when we were in hospital with our daughter. Turns out they often have their ways of telling us what they really need. Sounds like your little one is saying that she’s ready for the change. Good luck! #ablogginggoodtime

  11. It is so hard. I struggled with all 3 of mine and used to end up letting them fall asleep on me and then taking them to bed. As they got older it obvs got easier but sometimes I still struggle with my 5 year old! I now read to him and wait in the room until he’s asleep, this seems to be working. Good luck. Sarah #abloggingoodtime

  12. Anna says:

    As much as I love the little steps towards independence, I hate them too. It’s always lingering ‘this could be the last snuggle, the last hand hold’. I fret that if I try to make it last I’ll baby them too much but if I try to encourage this growth I’ll force them to grow up too fast! My son is 2 1/2 and he doesn’t like me to do his bedtime routine anymore, he chooses Daddy. I try not to look upset but I’d love to read Each, Peach….. to him just once more. #ablogginggoodtime

    • Mummy in a Tutu says:

      oh bless you sweet that must be so tough. We become less of a novelty after a while but just remember if he needs you he will come running xx

      • Anna says:

        When he’s having a tantrum it’s easier to get over 🙂 you’ll be required for bedtime snuggles and cuddles again in the near future I’m sure. Maybe not every night but those nights when only mummy can make everything right at bedtime x

  13. Oh you poor thing. As you know, I saw your FB post and did wonder what was up but it didn’t seem polite to ask. I definitely get why this is difficult for you. I’m having something similar with Baby. She didn’t used to be able to go to sleep without mummy cuddles but now she’s a little bigger she wants to lay down most nights and squirms if I try to rock her to sleep. I know this is best for her and I want her to grow into a independent little human but part of me wants my little baby to stay a newborn who wants to be cuddled all the time and gets terribly sad every time she becomes a little more grown up. #ablogginggoodtime

  14. Ellen says:

    Oh bless you. I definitely think sleep and bedtime are some of the most stressful parts of parenting small ones – as you know I’m not exactly rocking that area myself!! It sounds like she’s ready to go to sleep on her own and that is a good thing but obviously you will miss the cuddle time. Hopefully you can make up for it with cuddles downstairs beforehand or something? It’s hard as they grow up and move away from us! #ablogginggoodtime

  15. Crummy Mummy says:

    I think you just have to trust your instinct – I know what you mean about being sad about it though! #ablogginggoodtime

  16. Cut yourself some slack, parenting is hard, we all know that but sometimes it’s those emotional ‘Mummy Moments’ that can break your heart – like realising they are growing up! Why else do we cry buckets on their first day at school? It’s not because we don’t want them to progress (or don’t want the hours to do something else!) it’s because it’s the end of something special- but it’s always the beginning of something special too! Please don’t feel guilty at all, it’s wonderful that she is growing and completely natural that things will change. I find a good old cry helps and then I remind myself it’s a privilege to be around to see those changes and watch them grow. Sending you a big Mum hug xx #abloggingoodtime

  17. mummyitsok says:

    It is so tough! Bedtime routines are especially hard as its easy to stick with what works! I think it’s great she is learning to sleep by herself though it will help her development and it’s good for them to learn a little separation from mum is OK! #ablogginggoodtime

    • Mummy in a Tutu says:

      Thanks lovely. Yeah deep down I know it is the right thing but its not necessarily the easiest is it? xx

  18. I totally get where you are coming from. Parenting is so difficult sometimes, I often question what I have done even though at the time I did what I thought was best!

    #ablogginggoodtime

  19. Rach says:

    Amen to the person who said trust your instincts. They’re there for a reason is what I always tell myself. #ablogginggoodtime

  20. Emma Reed says:

    Having had a bad sleeper and having rocked until all the baby weight came off! heehee I can say I am happy that he is now three and goes into his own bed at night… shame he doesn’t stay there! #ablogginggoodtime

  21. I have the same issue with my 2 yo. I have to climb in bed and pretend I am sleeping 🙂 Luckily we have just moved her into the same room as her sister. So they have conversations until the fall asleep. I miss the cuddling but am enjoying the few extra moments to myself. #ablogginggoodtime

  22. Glad to hear that your approach to getting Alyssa off to sleep is working well even though you are missing the cuddles. I’m inclined to agree that if Alyssa was upset about not getting cuddles, she wouldn’t be settling so well. It is hard though when there’s a little shift in that direction and you realise that your little one is becoming more independent and you have to learn to let go. The fact that you worry about being a good mummy definitely suggests you are though – we all have those doubts and those moments. It would be nice sometimes if parenting did come with a manual but every child is different and every parent is different and different things will work for each of us. It doesn’t make parenting any easier though! #ablogginggoodtime

  23. there are always going to be challenges and we are all just doing the best we can. Lately my 5 year old has taken to sneaking into our bed in the middle of the night. After three years of having no problems she’s decided that she doesn’t want to sleep alone anymore #blogginggoodtime

  24. I swear the second we get one kid to stay in their beds- another enters this phase. My husband is ready to sleep in the damn basement. Our kids are nighttime ninjas.

    This has been going on for about ten years straight.

    #ablogginggoodtime

  25. Twin Pickle says:

    Awww… baby cuddles are wonderful but you both need good sleep. Good luck with finding your new routine. She’s a cutie!! #ablogginggoodtime

  26. Jaki says:

    Ah jeez. It’s hard. So hard. My little one turned four just before Christmas. So certainly not so little anymore. It feels like everyday he needs me less and less. Now I know that’s not strictly true because of course he needs me, but in comparison to how much I have had to do for him over the past four years, the independence thing is hard to get a grip on. He is growing up in so many ways and I know that now is the time to treasure the little moments where he wants me there. Like right now – I’m sat on his bedroom floor while he falls asleep. This is one thing I know he will grow out of, so for as long as he wants me here. That’s where I’ll be. Lovely post. #ablogginggoodtime

  27. Laura says:

    Lovely post. I think we basically just make it up as we go along. As long as you follow your instinct you will do what is right for your family. Hope everything falls into place with the new sleep routine now x #ablogginggoodtime

  28. It’s always so tough. For me it was always a feeling of “I don’t want to miss a thing.” And letting go of different things as she’s getting older just makes me say “Ugh” all the time. (she’s now 10 and rolls her eyes at me)

    Can I say though, It shows your daughter feels her mommy has created a safe & happy place for her that she’s shifted into this next phase. So great job to you there. =)

    #ABloggingGoodTime

  29. Aw so sad for you. My daughter is 2.5 and me or my husband still have to snuggle up with her in her bed in order for her to sleep. I love it!

  30. Rhian Harris says:

    Just as you think you’ve nailed something, they change and make you question it all over again! It’s all part of the job, I guess 🙂 #ablogginggoodtime

  31. Parenting moves through so many endings and beginnings… sometimes things end before you have had the chance to prepare for the fact they have run their course – like realsiing that your kids haven’t had you read a bedtime story to them for a long while or that they have stopped jumping into bed for a morning cuddle…our kids don’t stay the same but as they get older new things open up and that’s wonderful and exciting. Best wishes #ablogginggoodtime

  32. Popping back from #ablogginggoodtime x

  33. Ooooo yes I understand this quandry – I still have cuddles with my 6 year old before he drops off but sometimes wonder if it’s more for me than him….One of the twins just says cot and goes straight down, the other says ‘cuddle’ and we sit in the rocker for a bit together…. I suppose they’re all individuals and it’s back to whatever works for them (and you!). So pleased Alyssa is continuing to sleep well. xx #ablogginggoodtime

  34. It’s so difficult isn’t it. We just have to trust our instincts in the end. Sleep would be good right now!! Please never doubt yourself you are doing a good job xx #abloggingoodtime

  35. We all have doubts and all wonder what harm we are doing. It’s time we flip that around and look at the good we are doing. You have taught your wee one to self nurture and sleep on her own. As one with two extra in the bed, ages 6 and 8, that is something to strive for! Celebrate the success. There will be many more challenges to come. You are a beautiful parent! <3 #ablogginggoodtime

  36. It sounds like you really struggled to get your head around what was best for little lady, but i agree that if she was settling with no tears, then she had already adapted to the new routine. Enjoy the extra time to yourself, i feel your pain with the adjustment as im off to work tomorrow for the first time so I dont like this change either!!! #ablogginggoodtime

  37. Tammymum says:

    That pic at the end is so cute! It’s tough isn’t it I find myself battling my inner monologue trying to work out what is ‘best’ . I also struggle when they gain that little but more independence from me as it’s just a reminder that this is the most dependant they will ever be and they are only ever going to get more and more self sufficient from thei mummy. Waaaah…goes off crying into pillow. #ablogginggoodtime x

  38. Brandi Puga says:

    This is something you will struggle with until she is much older! I still struggle with with this, if my son wakes in the middle of the night, i know i should soothe him back to sleep without picking him up and bringing him to our bed…but I also just want to LOVE him as much as possible….parenting is a rough gig!

  39. Brandi Puga says:

    forgot this #ablogginggoodtime

  40. Oww honey, you are amazing but I know how you feel. Now Leo is five there are only tiny glimmers where I feel he actually needs me in the same way he did when he was smaller. Every now and again he wants to cuddle in my bed to go to sleep and I want to let him because I want it but I also don’t want this to mess up his usual routine as he likes things the same or he gets stressed. Wanting to do right by her means you are an awesome parent, I have never been actually sure of any decision I have made..parenting is uncertainty but you are certain you love her and that is most important xxx #ablogginggoodtime

  41. Oh lovely, I totally get where you’re coming from and we are in such a similar position. For months now, I have been kind of crippled with even more sleep deprivation than I thought we could handle…Emma has been up 6,7,8 times a night, so when we returned from Australia I decided we’d have to start our version of sleep training. It’s been great and slowly she is sleeping through, but this morning when I woke at 7am, I felt sad that she hadn’t called out at 3am for us. It’s a good thing (I think), it means Alyssa is happy and ready for a bit of rest…it means she has so much fun and love from mummy in the day and more importantly trusts that you are there, even if you’re not by here side. You’re amazing, lots of love to you! Thank you for hosting #ablogginggoodtime x

  42. I understand your struggle and I did read your previous post about your sleep training. It sounds like your little girl knows how to go to sleep on her own. If you want to give her lots of cuddles before she falls asleep, then do it. You only live once. xxx

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