because bella is asleep. and has been asleep. for 30 minutes.
why is this so amazing? well let me start at the beginning (as all good stories do).
at the ripe young age of 6 weeks, bella started sleeping AWESOMELY. and i got cocky. she would go easily to sleep after a bath and swaddling session, and would STAY asleep for 6-8 hours. then she would barely wake up to nurse, and would go back to sleep for another 6-8 hours. she continued to do this for the next, oh......14 weeks! so i became spoiled. i assumed that it could only get better. boy was i wrong.
at around 4 1/2 months, we stopped swaddling. now this could be the culprit of our sleeping demise. but the kid was moving WAY too much to stay swaddled. so we unwrapped her for the last time one morning, and never looked back.
and this was our last easy night. i'm not sure of the exact moment she stopped sleeping well, but a few weeks later, bella had a sweet little visitor who decided to pop in. yes, her first tooth.
fast forward to last week. you all remember my little "breakdown"? well, that was my turning point. i realized that i don't HAVE to have sleepless nights along with frustrating days. i CAN have a baby who sleeps right, allowing me to sleep right, allowing my days to, well, NOT be awful.
so i started researching (because that's what i do best!). i looked up every kind of sleep training i could think of. "cry it out" sounds so sad. but these other mamby pamby ways were not going to get my stubborn-as-a-mule child to go to sleep (what can i say, she gets it honestly. from her father ).
so i talked to a few people, read a few experts, and figured out what would work for us. tonight is night 4. night one was a little rough. she fought like a champion. methodical in her madness. we talked to her, sang to her, shushed her, patted her back, put her on her tummy, etc. and she cried. SCREAMED. for 2 hours. until we reluctantly gave in and rocked her to sleep. i know, i know. don't pick her up, but i'm telling you-the kid was purple she was screaming so hard.
night 2, we spent a little more time "winding down" and she only cried for about 20 minutes. we came in at about 5 minutes, reassured her, sang to her, rubbed her back. and then, suddenly.....asleep. i checked on her after about an hour, still asleep. she woke up at 3:30, but this was welcome after the last few weeks of waking up every two hours!
night 3 was even better. she went to sleep after about 5 minutes and woke up only once at 4:30.
tonight though. tonight, bella got it. this is where that whole knock on wood thing occurs. see, i laid her down, told her goodnight, kissed her, and left. no noise, no crying. she laid there for a few minutes then WENT. TO. SLEEP. i know. a-mazing. now, if she STAYS asleep, this will be the greatest night of my life! and if she wakes up like this in the morning
we will all be happy.