2011 is going to be Emerson's year. At least that's what Clay and I told her the morning of January 1st. This is going to be the year she kicks her bottle and suckie addiction, learns to pee in the potty and starts sleeping in her own bed. I asked her if she was excited about all these Big Girl changes and she said yes. Well, she whispered yes with an apprehensive look on her face but that still counts, so full-steam ahead.
First up- bottles. I honestly didn't mind the nighttime buhbah routine but washing them? Yeah, no; dishes suck. So one morning in early February, I started the water in the kitchen sick to wash the bottles and thought, I don't even want to do this. I looked at Em and asked her how she felt about throwing these baby bottles away.
Narls, who can't hear me ask him to put on his shoes when I'm standing right next to him, came running in from a floor and a few rooms away to ask why in the world we'd throw away Emerson's bottles (I have my eye on the boy; he has hoarding tendencies).
I explained that Em is a big girl and she drinks out of cups anyway and these baby bottles are just cluttering up our cupboards so let's trash them. Em said ok, and tossed the first one in. We turned on the radio and danced around and shouted BUHBYE BUHBAHS! every time we added another bottle to the wastebasket. We called daddy at work to let him know there are no more bottles in the house and set the trashbag by the road on our way out the door that morning. Buhbye buhbahs!
During bedtime that night, Em asked about a bottle and I reminded her we threw them away and I prepared myself for a tantrum. But she said okay and fell asleep. Never asked for another one again. AND THAT WAS THE END OF BOTTLES.
Too easy, right?
Fast-forward two weeks to the end of February when I was cleaning Emerson's room. I pulled off her crib sheets to wash them, since Snowmeow - who has claimed ownership of the otherwise vacant crib - prefers freshly laundered bedding, when I got the brilliant idea to covert the crib into a toddler bed. I removed the side rail, lowered the mattress and it was love at first sight the minute Em saw it. "MY BIG GHOOUL BED!", she shrieked.
Now I had no intention of moving Em to her own bed quite yet- I hadn't done the research! I hadn't googled all the techniques and I wasn't armed with tactics! Em has been sleeping with Clay and me for the last year (per her "request", read: 'I'm-going-to-stop-breathing-and-then-throw-myself-head-first-out-of-this-crib-if-someone-doesn't-come-get-me-right-FUCKING-NOW') so I knew it wasn't going to be as easy as throwing up a new bed. But now there was this new (well, converted) bed so we had to strike while the iron was hot. Clay and I worked diligently the rest of the day pumping her up about how awesome her Big Girl bed is and how fabulous she'd sleep in it and ohh emm gee, isn't this fantastic? This fantastic new Big Girl bed?
That night I braced myself for the impending tantrum as we walked hand-in-hand into her bedroom for bedtime. I tucked her in and read her a story and cuddled her carebear next to her and kissed her and told her how awesome her bed is and how much I loved her.
Then daddy and big brother came in to tell her good night and her how awesome her bed is and how much they love her.
I lay on the floor with her after they left and she asked me once, "mumma daddy bed?". I told her this is where she sleeps now since she's so big and brave and amazing (and then I added that there was a spider in my bed anyway - just for good measure) and within minutes she was asleep.
I snuck out and peeked on her before Clay and I went to bed. Still sleeping soundly. And she slept all night. And has proceeded to sleep every night since in her own bed.
Again, it was too easy.
I am amazed. This little Big Girl is amazing.