Friday, March 27, 2009

This Means War

"We make war that we might live in peace." Aristotle
"War is Hell" General William Tecumseh Sherman
"The quickest way of ending a war is to lose it." George Orwell

As you all know, I was Cruela Denise and took Emma's bottle away on Monday night. I knew it was time but she was very attached to it, more so than my other kids ever where. In the end, it was my own selfish desire to finally sleep more than 4 hours at a stretch (if I was lucky) that finally made me become mean.

So Monday night we had our first skirmish when I told Emma her bottle was all gone. Then Tuesday afternoon Emma declared war by peeing on my lap. But you know that already.

Mommy 1: Emma 1

What you don't know (unless you have been reading my Facebook updates) is that war was on full force. Emma began trying to wear me down and she had many tactics.

Guerrilla warfare: She dumped a box of Reese's cereal on the floor.
Which the puppy ate some of and then proceed to vomit and poop diarrhea all over my carpet. Double bonus points for Emma.

Mommy 1: Emma 3

Next came bedtime and nap time. If you remember from the video last week, Emma slept in the twin bed and Ryan slept in the toddler bed. In the past, Emma would get out of the toddler bed whenever I put her to bed in it, but the twin bed seemed high enough that she never tried to get out. Until this week. The first night of her crying/fit she slid herself out of bed and it was a whole new ball game for the child. We were up until midnight every night, with her ultimately sleeping in my bed.

Mommy 2: Emma 6

The good news there is that the last two nights she actually slept through the night. The bad news was she refused to take a nap.

Until about 5:00 on Wednesday and Thursday on the living room floor, which then perpetuated the staying up late. Talk about a vicious cycle. And a cranky mommy. Mommy needs her nap time, not personally-- although that might be nice, but her babies nap time so that she can spend uninterrupted time on Facebook get important things done. On Wednesday at nap time, I must have put that child back to bed about 30 times. I finally gave up. Pick and choose your battles, wise words spoken by a war battered general, or a really tired mommy. Same thing.

The final straw was last night. I rocked Emma to sleep and put her in her bed around 9:30. I came downstairs and was in the middle of writing a blog post gloating stating that Emma was asleep before midnight for the first time all week and I was going to take a bath and read a book when Ninja baby showed up.

This must have been her 5th trip down the stairs. I was tired and I considered giving in but I held firm. And although Emma has a bottle hanging out her mouth here...

It's an empty bottle, not even a liner. I just tell her the bottle's all gone.

Mommy 3: Emma 6

So let's recap, shall we? So far Emma's not gotten a bottle full of formula since Tuesday afternoon. In the meantime, Emma's peed on Mommy, spilled cereal, caused the dog to poop and vomit all over carpet, Emma refuses to take a nap and made sure that Mommy has absolutely NO alone time from 6:45 am until midnight, now sleeps in Mommy's bed and clings to Mommy practically all day long.

How is this a good thing again? Oh yeah, I get 6 hours of consecutive sleep. Although I don't really because I'm so used to her waking up in the night I keep waking up wondering if she's okay. Ugh.

But this morning I got an epiphany. Emma wasn't sleeping because she could escape from her bed. If she couldn't escape then she might go to sleep. Since tying her down didn't seem like a good option, (seriously, who has time for a DFS investigation?) I moved onto Option #2.

I converted the toddler bed back into a baby bed. The real trick was convincing Ryan that the big bed was a better choice than the now baby bed. After I showed him the cars and trucks on his sheets, it was go.

{Yes, Ryan was sleeping in the purple butterfly and flower toddler bed while Emma slept in the car and truck bed. Get over it already, Ross.}

Only someone forgot to consult Emma and she was not for this switch. At nap time I put her in the crib and she screamed and cried and cried and screamed until about 30 minutes later, it was quiet. (I had been going up and checking on her and reassuring her every 10 minutes or so) I crept upstairs to investigate. For all I knew she had figured out a way to climb out and she was in my bathroom playing with my makeup, which she had done the day before when she got out of bed at nap time.

But instead she had fallen asleep. Success! Emma may have won more battles but Mommy won the war. Mommy always wins.

If you want to be my friend on Facebook you can find me under Denise Grover Swank. And be sure to join a group I created, just this morning, titled More Housework, Less Facebook! Don't worry, it's just our cover story. We say we are going to do more housework while we really spend more time on Facebook. I can't leave my group unattended now, can I?


Carey-Life in the Carpool Lane said...

Oh, Denise, I so feel for you. We are having sleeping issues here too. No fun...and sometimes it really does feel like a war with tactically moves and all! Who would have thought it would be so difficult to outsmart our babies!

Good for you for sticking with it. Here is hoping for more and better sleep tonight (for us both)!

The Gotch 5 said...

Dang I thought you were going to say you gave it back!!! We are still up at least once a night all week long. I do not have the strength you do we just throw the bottle in and walk like a zombie back to bed at this point. I'll get there one day but not today!!

The Gotch 5 said...

Dang I thought you were going to say you gave it back!!! We are still up at least once a night all week long. I do not have the strength you do we just throw the bottle in and walk like a zombie back to bed at this point. I'll get there one day but not today!!

Heather said...

Yay you won! See I knew you could do it. And you better not leave our group unattended ;)

The Johnson 5 said...

The sweet sweet smell of victory!

Anita said...

Oh my goodness Emma is just too cute! Glad you are winning the war!, how did last night go??

AmyK said...

These pictures are just too funny.

Party of Seven said...

Way to go Mom!!! Hope it continues to go well. She is a strong little one. :-)

FranticMommy said...

This is an awesome story! Cribs=containment. Containment is a beautiful thing! We have Ninja Baby too (she is 3)and I thank my lucky stars every night she still thinks her crib is her private "lair"!

RamblingMother said...

Too funny!

Xazmin said...

Go mommy! Those little stinkers can be so stubborn, can't they?

I like to think their strong spirits are a trial for us now, but will serve them well in the future!!


Lindsey's mom said...

Im right there with ya on the sleep! Lindsey goes down LATE! I get maybe 6hrs and that is a good night. Of course I am up at midnight on the computer while L is sleeping! I need my "me time" :)

Jill said...

Oh that Emma has some serious GUMPTION!!!!

I say MOMMY WINS!! A very SMART Momma!!! You go girl!

Lorie said...

Wow, congrats on winning the war, you may recall if it comes down to it, I can recommend a great crib tent when she decides to climb out of it.....haha

Good luck on the sleeping, BTDT, and it's no fun.

Margaret M said...

I laughed through the whole post. I also wonder just what she is "dreaming" up next as that sweet little angel sleeps. Sadly, I don't think your war is over just yet (takes 2 weeks to change a habit). I am anxiously waiting for the post on round 2. Hope there is minimal damage for both parties!

Brandy said...

Baby ninja..LMAO! It looks like she was just as exhausted as you but just not ready to give up the fight.

How did the weekend go?

Shari U said...

Yeah, yeah, she's sleeping there, but she may be dreaming of other ways to show you who the real boss is. Don't count your chickens too soon, this little girl looks very, very cleaver and now she's rested and ready to go at it again. Good luck!

Double Dipped Sweets said...

Dropping by from SITS. good for you for fighting the battle! I know how hard it is on both of you! Good luck!

Sassypants Wifey said...

I look up to you for so many reasons... I have yet to break the nursing of the small one. I need to, I just havent yet... Oh someday sleep will find me again.

Anonymous said...

OH, to get to win the war w/ my 2yr old... or the 5yr old... I'm just too tired at 3am to get up and put them back into bed! I take the lazy route and just swoop them inbetween hubby/me, turn around, and go back to sleep. I wish now we'd bought a King size bed...

Kristen said...

Ouch! At least she finally took a nap. I like how she has the truck pillow in her flower bed.