I've officially lost control of Madelyn. I imagine this is probably how you feel when you watch your naive teenager pull out of the driveway for the first time. Or when you become "that mom" with the screaming flailing child in Target.
A bit helpless. A bit bewildered. And lost in the wonder of why parenthood is so darn hard sometimes.
Exactly 48 hours ago Madelyn learned how to get out of her crib and nighttime has since become a disaster of EPIC proportions.
Last night it took a full hour and 15 minutes to get her to go to sleep. She got out of bed screaming and thrashing like a rabid animal every time I put her in, she kicked and shook the baby gate at her door, she spit and hit me, you name it, she did it.
I had no idea what to do and I found myself walking through what felt like the steps of dealing with loss and guilt. I denied it, thinking she'd tire and go to sleep. I bargained, promising her a milkshake if she would please-dear-God-just-go-to-sleep. I got angry. I fought back tears. I tried everything. I was at a complete loss and eventually just started praying for strength and wisdom and I listened to her cry in the other room. It was horrible.
Eventually I just held her door shut so she couldn't get to the gate and somehow she got back up into her crib and went to sleep. At 5:30 this morning she woke up saying "mommy get me, get me!" which was good because she didn't get out on her own, and in a moment of pure sleep-deprived weakness and guilt for maybe being too hard on her, I let her come sleep the rest of the morning with me.
I have no idea what's going to happen tonight. Obviously I realize it's time to move her to a big girl bed so we're working on that, but until it's ready we're going to have to tough it out together.
Being a parent is hard and last night was by far the hardest night I've had so far. Never have I felt so clueless or so infused with self doubt. I realize this is the first of many battles we will likely fight over the course of her precious life, and I am not naive enough to think that they're going to get any easier, but I do hope I can find within me some shred of inner confidence that I'm doing the "right" thing--whatever that might be.