The Dreaded Paci Weaning


I am going to share with you my experience with weaning my 2 year old off of the paci. I can only speak from my experience as I know there are lots of ways to go about this delicate process.


For my Isla girl, her paci has been her best friend since day 1. I thought it was a miracle when a few months before she turned 2, we were able to cut down on the paci use to just naps and night time. Since she really struggled with teething every time she got a new tooth, and her paci was a comfort and help to her during those times, I just figured I’d wait until all her teeth were in to worry about taking the paci away altogether.
Fast forward to a couple days ago. She had turned 2 four months ago and I kept wondering when those last molars were going to come in so we could start thinking about taking away the paci. Well I felt like an idiot when I finally counted all her teeth and realized she already had those last molars in for a while now and that she no longer is teething. For some reason I kept thinking more were supposed to come in.


It was in that moment I thought, “Ok, this is it. We need to start the process of taking away the paci. There’s never going to be the right time. I’m going to have to create that moment myself.” I had these thoughts about an hour before her nap, so I tried to casually mention that she’s a big girl and big girls don’t need their paci anymore.
The reality of the words I had been speaking didn’t settle until I put her in the crib and told her she wasn’t going to be getting her paci for nap time. The look of sadness and distrust on her face just about broke me, but I knew it was going to be tough, but so necessary to get through. The screaming/crying/wailing for her paci last about 30 minutes. I went in to check on her about halfway through to reassure her and negotiate what a treat might look like if she takes a nap. That’s Isla for you—she loves to make a deal. To my amazement, she eventually fell asleep! She even woke up in a good mood, and that’s all the evidence I needed to know that we can get through this.
That night looked a similar way, but the crying didn’t last as long. The next day for her nap was even better, and that night before bed was even better. Here we are on day 3, and as I write this story, she’s taking another peaceful nap without her paci. I honestly thought her future husband was going to have to deal with the fact that Isla comes with a paci. She was that attached to the thing.


I wanted to share my experience to give hope to those terrified parents who are dreading the same process. I even asked some other mom friends what their technique was, and most of them said they got a paci bear, read books about a paci fairy, or they took several days to prepare their child letting them know the day was coming soon when they didn’t need their paci anymore. I don’t recall any of them saying they did it cold turkey one day without any planning, but for me and Isla, I think that’s the method that was going to work best for us. When thrown into a situation we adapt. Isla amazes me at her ability to transition and make adjustments where needed. She’s so strong and I am so glad that we embarked on this journey of no more paci without preparing much for it. That might seem like the opposite thing to do, but it really is just tough no matter your technique. It is about 3 days of lots of tears but they eventually do go to sleep without it, and it becomes one less transition to work through.


For us next, we plan on tackling potty training this winter. She’s not ready for it yet, but I definitely want her to be potty trained before she turns 3, and I want to give us plenty of time to work through it.


I honestly just can’t believe I’m even writing this post. This day has come, and I feel so proud of myself and Isla for working through it and being consistent. Good luck to all you parents getting ready to embark on this journey, and I’d love to hear how your experience goes!


I’m so grateful to be Isla’s mom and to be able to come alongside her as she grows throughout her life.

Second Trimester Recap

I can honestly not even believe that I am in the final stretch of this pregnancy! I remember thinking the second trimester lasted forever with my firstborn. The second time around, this whole pregnancy is flying, and I wonder if it mostly has to do with the fact that I keep myself busy chasing a toddler around all the time and can’t just sit around staring at my pregnancy apps, while slowly watching time crawl by (I may or may not have done this when I was pregnant with Isla). 
As mentioned already, the second trimester was a blur, but I’m going to do my best to recap what all I did/did not experience.

1. No Crazy Cravings

Along with the first trimester, I have not had any specific cravings that are out of my normal preferences. I will say that my appetite has increased, however, and I’m seeing that reflect on the scale! (I’ll talk more about that later)

2. Constantly Exhausted

I remember hearing that the second trimester is the golden trimester, as this is usually when women feel like a million bucks and get all their energy back that was zapped from them during the first trimester. Nope, not for me. I still wake up each morning super excited to take my nap as soon as I put my daughter down for her nap. This has effected my exercise as well. I still workout about 3 days a week, but those workouts are definitely nothing to brag about. However, I’m doing my best to stay moving and go on walks when the weather is nice enough.

3. Weight Gain

When I was pregnant with Isla, I gained about 22 lbs or so, if I remember correctly. I’m hoping to stick within that same number this time around, but it feels as though it has been packing on quickly lately! During the second trimester I gained about 8 lbs, for a total of about 13 lbs. I know I’m within a healthy range of weight gain, but it’s important for me to maintain my healthy lifestyle while pregnant so that I can bounce back easier after baby.

4. Troll Status

My husband thinks I’m crazy any time I compare my appearance to that of a troll, but I can’t help but think I’m onto something. I didn’t bother to buy myself any news clothes during the second trimester because I was in that “in between” phase where you can still kinda fit in your regular clothes, and some maternity clothes still don’t fit quite right. Regardless, that meant that most days I stayed in my comfy clothes if I wasn’t leaving the house, and elastic waistbands and no bras were my best friend. My husband was lucky if I did my hair or makeup. Poor guy, I know this isn’t going to get any better after I have the baby. Maybe in 5 years I’ll try a little harder (I kid! sorta..) I’m not one that feels particularly beautiful while pregnant. I know I’m growing a human, and that’s such a miraculous blessing, but I can’t wrap my head about the mental state of all the physical changes I’m going through. I’m going to make an effort during this final stretch of my pregnancy to see myself the way I know my husband does.
Overall, I am sure I’m forgetting quite a few things, but that’s what I get for not taking any notes during the second trimester! I really am just so excited to meet my daughter in a few short months. That is what makes any pregnancy symptom or physical change totally worth it. It’s not all glamorous, but it is such a gift, and one that I want to always remember to be so thankful and grateful for. 
Thanks for reading, and go hug on your precious kids!!

How To Survive Sick Week

As I’m writing this, we are on day 9 of myself being sick, while Isla is finally feeling and acting more herself. I am not quite in the clear, but Isla is thankfully. This was all so new to me. I hardly get sick, and Isla has never had more than a cold, so when I was told that she has RSV, pink eye, and an ear infection, I was at a loss. I have never had a sinus infection, but I’m convinced that’s what I have, and my symptoms are taking a little longer to subside. Because of all that she had going on, it affected pretty much everything about her from her sleep, to her eating, to her need for her paci, and overall energy. Since I was also feeling terrible, it just compounded on the entire situation. I don’t want this to sound like just a bunch of complaining, however. It’s definitely been tough to navigate this week, but I learned a few things that I wanted to share with any moms that may need some encouragement if they ever find themselves in the same situation.

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1. Forget what’s “normal” in your routine

You are now in survival mode momma, so that’s what you need to focus on. I was so stressed out in the beginning of our sickness wondering how I was going to care for my sick child while doing everything else. When I finally accepted that I was not going to get sleep and that our typical day-to-day routine was definitely not going to happen, it really helped me to just let go of any expectation to keep normalcy around. Just focus on staying up on administering medicines, getting in extra snuggles, and taking care of yourself and your sick baby.

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2. Don’t stress going backwards in your parenting efforts

I quickly realized that Isla was going to need me to be less strict on enforcing normal parenting habits like limited screen time and when she is allowed to have her paci. What she needed was plenty of rest and comfort, and I hate to admit it, but she was able to get more rest with her paci and a movie. We’ve been trying to limit pacis to just night time, which had been successful. But when she wanted it 24/7, I was worried that we were undoing every effort we had previously made. Same goes with how much screen time she was getting. I will say, on the other side of this, neither issue has taken more than a day or two to transition back into. It takes standing your ground and consistency, but I think that a week isn’t going to undo what you’ve been working on for months.

 

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3. Find joy in the little moments

While I could’ve been felt overwhelmed that my 20 month old wasn’t going down for her nap with gladness like she usually does, I chose to take the time she wanted with me to rock her while she reluctantly drifted off to just be thankful for this time I do have. It gave me time to give my tired and weary thoughts to God and find peace and rest in Him. I would rather have these moments than none at all, and as her momma, it’s my joy and privilege to be her person that helps when she feels absolutely helpless.Image result for please help

4. Ask for help

I’m not one that naturally asks for help all the time. I’d like to think that I can handle most things on my own (this is a big area I need help with in general). However, my husband has been amazing with picking up the slack that I so desperately needed, even without me asking for help. If he wasn’t able to help out as much, I would’ve needed to ask for more assistance on some days when I was at my wits end, but it’s something I highly recommend if you are going through the same thing and don’t have your husband as available to help during the day. I was surprised as to how many people that reached out asking if they could help if Ross wasn’t able to, and that is a blessing just to know that those people are there and willing. Image result for this too shall pass

5. Know this: You will get through this!

It was probably night 3 or 4 of having little to no sleep that I started to wonder if life would ever be the same again. In my dramatic and delirious mindset, it had felt more like it had been 3 or 4 years. In reality, most seasonal sickness seems to run its course in about a week or two which isn’t that long in the grand scheme of life. If crying and allowing yourself to feel overwhelmed for a moment helps release your stress and tension, let it out! It helped me tremendously a couple of times to be vulnerable with myself and just cry. But when you’re done crying, gather yourself, find some grit deep down, and get through another sleepless night. You are a strong mom, stronger than you know.

I am grateful to the other moms that encouraged me while navigating a tough week nursing my daughter back to health. This was all new to me, and oftentimes overwhelming. I’m also so grateful for my family’s health. I have a new appreciation for each breath and a good night’s rest. My heart also goes out to those who have children with chronic or debilitating illnesses. You are amazing, and there is so much I can learn from you.