It's like a lame joke: How do you night-wean a two year-old toddler?
Why, very gently.
Madeline and I have made good progress with the weaning project. The night-time nursing sessions have been gone for over a month now, and I'm feeling so much better. And we're both sleeping better, which is also a good thing.
I did this on my own, and thus prepared myself to face hours of inconsolable wails. A few days before Night 0, I told Madeline that very soon I wasn't going to have any milk for her at nighttime, but that she and I still could cuddle. On Night 0, before tucking her into bed, I told her that if she woke at night, I wasn't going to have any milk for her; night-time was for sleeping, but that if she was hungry she could have some Cheerios, or if she was thirsty, she could have a drink of water.
Sure enough, Madeline did wake up shortly after midnight. She howled in my arms for about six minutes, but then asked for water and Cheerios. I tucked her back into her crib, and I didn't hear from her again until morning. I was shocked. I guess that sometimes it *is* possible to reason with a toddler!
The second night was similar, except she was angry for a much shorter amount of time. These days, Madeline usually wakes up once and calls for me, but it's a quick bed-side visit. Most of the time she merely asks for her cup of water to be refilled or a cuddle, and then she rolls over, taps her Ocean Wonders Aquarium on, and re-assumes her sleeping position. Two nights ago, she actually slept from 8:30pm - 7:15am without requiring my attention at all. Amazing!
Friday Links: The Carseat Version
- I stumbled upon Kids in Safe Seats, which is a volunteer organization promoting the safe use of carseats in the province of Newfoundland. Their information about the importance of staying rear-facing longer isn't up-to-date, but they do hold free seat checking clinics (and the schedule is on the website). The neat thing about this organization is that they've been keeping stats on correct and incorrect installations since the fall of 2000. Thus far, only a little over 6% of parents are using their carseats correctly when brought for inspection. I'm stunned.
- One of the other parents on the parenting forum I'm a member of posted a link to Top 10 Cars for Kids in Car Seats, and it's a really good article! To date, I've installed Madeline's Marathon in an elderly Ford Tempo, a Toyota Camry, a Toyota Tercel, a Chevy TrailBlazer, Mazda Proteges of both the sedan and hatchback varieties, a Nissan Altima, a Mazda 6 sedan, a large Lincoln something-or-other, a Chevy Malibu Maxx, and now, a Ford Escape. Let me tell you, bumpy seats, oddly angled seat-backs, and protruding headrests are the bane of my existence. I agree with the article naming the Malibu Maxx to their Top Ten - the rear seatback reclined so I could get a better fit with Madeline's carseat, and the entire rear bank of seats could be adjusted back so that there was plenty of room. My next fave would be my Tempo back in Calgary. It's too old to have anything other than a plain-jane backseat.
- Car Seat Safety with Winter Coats is another timely article about how to check that your child's warm winter gear doesn't compromise the performance of their carseats. Everyone knows that thick coats are a no-no, right? Even if you live in Alberta and it's 48 degrees below zero with the windchill factor it's a no-no :) Jokes about my traditional winter home aside, please read this article and make sure your little person will be safe in a crash. Keep the thick and puffy coats in the car in case you need them, but they don't belong in a carseat.