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Tonight as I rocked Edith to sleep her hand started to drift across my face. As her eyes got heavy, her fingers traced my lips, my nose, my forehead and finally rested on my cheek. Oh how I love the feeling of her soft hand on my skin. I could have stayed there holding her forever. Her chubby little fingers softly resting on my face, the last little movement before she drifted off into the most peaceful slumber. Bedtime is not always this tranquil, actually quite the opposite.
The last few nights have really been challenging. Edith has not been sleeping, up several times a night and taking hours to fall back asleep. She has always had difficulty with sleeping. She needs that extra support and who am I to say those needs aren’t valid or important. Her needs are different than Lucille’s ever were, and that’s ok. To be honest though, it’s very challenging to remember that at 3am when you are sleep deprived and have been so for almost 20 months. Last night as I sat on the floor next to her bed, shirtless, hoping the scent of my tank top would bring her comfort, I felt defeated. With each stroke of her back I prayed she would feel secure enough to fall asleep. I repeated my mantra “she needs you, for whatever reason she needs you. Teeth, growth spurt, or just the sensation that her world is about to be turned upside down (which it totally is). At this moment you bring her comfort. All she needs in the world is you.” as tired and as frustrated and as weak as I felt those thoughts brought me strength. I knew that there would come a day she wouldn’t need me anymore and that day would come because of nights like this. The sacrifice I make night after night gives her the strength she will one day need to conquer this big challenge on her own. Hey sleep is no easy feat. I can barely sleep without my hubby by my side or the sound of the tv so I understand how challenging this must be for someone who has been on this earth less than two years. It’s a scary thing. I am not going to rush you baby girl, when you are ready you let me know it’s ok to slip out. Just know that no matter what I’ll be there, right there by your side. My hope is that knowing I am there will give you the confidence to do it on her own. One day, when you are ready, you won’t need me and that will be because you will always know I’ll be there if you do. Im not spoiling her, I building her up. I’m empowering her rather than rushing her. I’m showing her that I believe in her and we always accomplish our greatest achievements with the people we love by our side, building us up. I’m hoping that this will translate farther than just a few sleepless nights but into the big giant scary world where this girl is destined to do magnificent things. Really amazing things!