About a month before going back to work, I decided to give Caris a dummy.
So what is wrong with that you may be wondering? Most moms give their little darlings a dummy from the moment they first arrive in the world. The problem is, I hate dummies. I don’t think they are cute, and I certainly don’t think that 4 or 5 year olds with dummies permanently in their mouths are cute. But before you judge me, I do believe that if they work for you and your baby, then that’s awesome, but I’m still not a fan. (They are called “pacifiers” for a reason, right?)
I tried to give Alex a dummy when he was a wee one, ‘cos that’s what everyone does, right? But he was not interested. He also wasn’t interested in drinking milk out of anything other than a boob, but that is an entirely different story. He wasn’t a fussy baby, so not having a dummy to pacify him wasn’t a problem, he was happy to be cuddled or rocked. And I was a happy camper; no nasty dummy to get rid of later. (One of my friends is still trying to get rid of her son’s dummy habit, and he’s four.)
So, to get back to the issue at hand, I gave Caris a dummy in an attempt to make the life of my child-minder easier when I went back to work. Just a little something to help her fall asleep etc. She was a very happy thumb-sucker. From tiny, she would put her little thumb in her mouth, and fall into sweet pleasant dreams, no rocking, no fussing. I would sometimes hear her stir in the middle of the night, and before I could even get out of bed to go to her, she would pop her thumb in her mouth and go back to sleep.
She didn’t want a dummy either in the early days, so I never pushed it. Up until a month ago. My little cherub has decided that she quite likes the dummy now: she smiles at it when she sees it, and grabs it and pops it into her mouth when it is within reach, and most importantly falls asleep with it. Mission accomplished. So you are probably still wondering what the problem is with that, other than my inherent dislike for the horrible things? But sadly my “sleep-easy” plan has backfired. IN A BIG WAY. She is waking up about 4 or 5 times at night wanting the blasted dummy. Gone are the days of my sweet thumb-sucking, self soothing baby. I am such a dumb(my)ass! (And I can just see myself having bargaining sessions with her at 3 or 4, to please give the dummy to the fairies in exchange for a Barbie / Dora / whatever flavour-of-the-month toy her little heart would desire. )