Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Rocking to Sleep

Tonight, I rocked Jupiter to sleep.

I'm sure many people do not think this is an amzing statement. In fact, I'm sure many people would think it should read something like "Tonight Jupiter went to sleep all by herself." It seems like that is the parental goal; to have their kids go to sleep all on their own.

When Jupiter was a baby, nobody rocked her to sleep. She laid in her crib, and rocked her head or her entire body back and forth until she rocked herself to sleep. Rocking herself to sleep is her default setting. It's what she does. Even still, she rocks herself in her bed to fall asleep. Now she does it to music, and sings or makes up songs, and gives herself terrible bedhead, which is a pain to deal with because she also hates having her hair combed.

I always want to rock her to sleep. It's something I always imagined doing. But it's something she fights. Sometimes the more she fights it, the more she needs it. Lots of times I settle for a compromise, and we rock for five or ten minutes before she goes to bed. Sometimes two minutes, if that's all she'll tolerate. Sometimes, she's more receptive to being rocked in the morning, when I get her up.

But tonight, she didn't really fight it. She ended up being held in the rocking chair for screaming "I hate you!" at me. For something I don't even remember now. She whined about it, and begged to go back in her bed, but didn't fight too much about it. By which I mean she didn't try to bite me or scratch my face off. She whined a bit more, then snuggled down and lo and behold, went to sleep. So I rock her for 15 or 20 minutes, which is all I can manage before I fall asleep myself, and I'm very quiet, but inside I'm doing the victory dance. She let me rock her to sleep!!! Yipee!!!

I also spoon feed her oatmeal in the morning. Yes, she just turned five years old. Yes, she's prefectly capable of feeding herself oatmeal in the morning. But she lets me do it. She even wants me to do it. And as I told the social worker at the last post placement report, she won't want me to do it when she's 13. So I spoon feed her oatmeal. Happily, I might add. I hope that someday she'll want me to rock her to sleep too.

We went to vote today. Jupiter was very sad when I told her that I could not vote for Troy for president. Then she wanted me to explain how people get their names on the ballot so she could vote for him. The election results are starting to come in, and there's no way I can stay up to watch the whole thing. Sometimes, getting up so early is inconvenient. Sometimes, I would like to be able to stay up as late as grown ups.


FaerieMama said...

How beautiful! My daughter is sixteen, and I still ADORE those nights when she allows me to rock her to sleep, and mornings of spoon feeding her breakfast. We are such lucky moms in so many ways. Yes, our kids walk a tough road, but the sweet times are all the more sweet, don't you think? THank you for sharing that!

Lisa said...

This is so wonderful and I do know exactly how huge this is! I'm so glad I followed Faerie Mama over here.