My first born slept through the night very early on.
She slept right through diaper changes, door creaks, and daylight savings—she just loved her crib and loved her sleep.
Does this mean she was a “good baby”?
That’s a ridiculous question people asked moms.
Does this mean I was a “good mom”?
Nope. Not at all.
It only means this was part of our story—part of our sleep story.
And it doesn’t have anything to do with whether or not we are “good” people.
And it also doesn’t have anything to do with whether or not other moms and their babies are “good” either.
My daughter liked to sleep in her crib.
She liked her lovey.
And she liked to play and babble in her bed for as long as she desired before dozing off on her own.
My son and I have a different sleep story.
He liked company.
He was a cuddler.
He was always happier to go to sleep when someone was close to him.
And so, he and I did things differently.
Of course, as motherhood would have it, just when he started sleeping through the night, she started waking up.
She called for me; he slept through it.
She wanted me near; he reached for his crib.
She wanted to snuggle; he rolled over.
And so then, she and I did things differently.
I didn’t really read the sleep books—they gave me anxiety.
I didn’t really follow a method—none of them felt right.
I didn’t really consume myself with trying to understand the changes, the differences, the subtleties—I just couldn’t handle that.
Instead, I tried really hard to pay attention to what they needed.
I tried really hard to trust their instincts—and my own—and to take their lead.
I tried really hard to give up expectations, relinquish my control, and accept our simultaneous ongoing and forever changing sleep stories because that was the best I could do.
And if you’re trying to make sense of this whole sleep thing and find some peace inside your heart, I pray that’s all you need to do, too.
I am certainly not a mom expert.
And I am obviously not a sleep expert.
But I can share with you what I’ve learned:
If you do what works best for you and your baby,
and if you recognize, allow, and respond to changes within the dynamics of your own home and your own children,
you will always be able to believe in your heart that you simply did the best you could in every moment.
And I promise you that, to your children, this will always be more than enough—
and that is seriously all that matters.