The Comfort of Night
Here I sit in my sweats, clacking away on my keyboard as babyjama sleeps away the troubled night that she had. It wasn't that strange of a night to begin with. We spent the evening with my parents, eating dinner and then watching the vice-presidential debate.
By the time we left my folks house, papajama and I were in agreement that we would take the long way home and give our sleepy-head time to fall asleep in her car seat. After laying her down, papajama continued our endless conversation about how much space his mother should take up in our marriage. I hate and love talking about that subject at the same time. I hate it because we never get anywhere, and I love it because I am always hoping that we will.
After a wholly unsatisfying exchange both of our eyelids were drooping as we crawled into bed next to our little one. We snuggled, all of us together under the covers.
About an hour before the alarm rang I woke fully. Realizing that I'd been restlessly dreaming, and also realizing that babyjama had been thrashing most of the night and somehow on autopilot I had been comforting and nursing her all night long. She whimpered and kicked the covers again. Searching with her tiny mouth for my breast. This time I decided not to give in.
I'm happy to comfort babyjama whenever she needs it, but somehow it clicked that my comforting her was actually distracting her from sleep. Within moments she settled herself down to sleep, and I got my one solitary hour of uninterrupted sleep for the night.
I'm not saying that I'll never nurse her at night again, but I'm amazed that that was the solution to the problem last night. Granted I'm pretty liberal in my views about nursing (meaning that I think that the breast is best used liberally...e.g.: tired? how about nursing? hungry? I think you should nurse. Did you get hurt? Would you like to nursie?), but I'm also aware that there comes a time when it's no longer useful. I have been wondering when I would notice that time nearing, and if I would be able to read the signals.
Like so many other things, this is an unexpected change, and I'm once again on uncharted territory.