Yeah I know… big surprise here…hahaha
One of the things I’ve learned with all my children is that no matter how tired, cranky or grumpy they (I) may be when they wake up I always try to make sure that I always smile and use a pleasant, soothing/happy tone. The best way to start your kids day off right is and always will be with a smile!
The words “Put on a Happy Face” comes to mind. Whether they wake up easily or screaming like all hell broke loose, this technique helps you considerably if used consistently. Every time I open the door after my girls have been sleeping all night or even when they are taking a quick nap, I make it a point to make them feel as if it’s seeing them is the happiest moment of my day. I’m glowing with delight, hugging them and giving gentle kisses on their cheeks… even (and especially) when I feel like crap.!
After all, every day with your child is a gift and no matter how predictable anyone’s life can be. So looking forward to the tons of new experiences, humorous discoveries and wonderful lessons you can learn about yourself, your child and parenting is a real blessing. So why wouldn’t you be happy?
How I Learned This Technique?
Well, the hard way of course…lol
You see after my wife and I had our second child we immediately noticed her sleeping pattern was completely different than our first child…BIG SHOCKER THERE! Being as such her night time soothing requirements were completely different than our first child. Unlike our first bundle of joy(destruction), this newest edition to our lives quit often woke up being very upset which was hard to adapt to seeing as our first child almost always slept through the night. The universe took it easy on us at first I guess as she pretty much never woke up unless she was either really hungry or had and unusually full diaper.
Like most parents who are completely unprepared with this reality. Let’s face it, few people are! We stumbled around and sluggishly bounced off walls like tired zombies as we found our way to the crib. As most parents will confess (unless they are bold face LIAR’S!) it’s really hard for anyone to get all chipper when you are suddenly shocked out of a deep slumber. Trying to do anything when you are not even half awake while is as you are forced to try an figure out, “What the hell the problems is this time around?”
“Should I pick up the child to prepare a bottle, grab a diaper, feed the baby a diaper, use a baby wipe on the bottle, jump out the window”… are just some the thoughts you’re screaming (hopefully inside your head, but all parents knows how well that goes) as your stumbling around and thinking, “What the hell do I have to do to shut you up!?!?” As these are just some of the random thoughts that can bolted through mind unless you get lucky and get it right the first time. Hey, when your exhausted and really only half awake, you’d be surprise how easy it is to leave a diaper in the fridge at 3:3o in the morning…lol
After a few days of this madness, (trust me, it can be weeks so I was quite lucky) one morning when our child woke me up a little more upset than as clumsily stumbled half asleep towards her crib once again while cursing like a madman in my head (well, maybe not all in my head…lol) that realized how lucky I really was. Seeing as we almost decided to not have any children at all I was somehow blessed with two beautiful little girls who loved to make us smile as much as we loved to make the laugh.
Patience and Persistence
Once I realized how lucky I was my attitude changed and I went from silently angry to “putting on my happy face” before I looked over the edge of the crib and started using a soothing voice and with happy tone. Then, like a ray of sunshine she’d look up at me and her unhappy persona soon melted away faster than normal. I was shocked! As that one small act of me pretending to hold my shit together seemed to help make the rest of the process of taking care of her needs a lot easier.
Granted it didn’t stop her from being upset all the time, but, I could tell that she really appreciated the way I handled it as opposed to being all grumpy! It also helped me maintain my calm as well which allowed me to quickly realize that all I really needed was to create a step by step process that helped me systematically go through all the possible things that could be upsetting my child. Of which, actually worked no matter what time of day it was when it came soothing any of my children. (Damn I wished I learned this my very first one…lol
After all, the three main reasons any child ever gets upset are when they are either tired, uncomfortable or hungry. Write that down!
Sorry There is No Perfect Solution
Ever since then, no matter how upset she (or I) was. I always elected to “put one a happy face” and go through the motions while following those three steps and it soon made nearly every awakening a happy one for both of my kids (after like a million tries…hahaha). The results of applying these techniques improved the more often I tried. Now, did you notice how I said “nearly” … Well, that’s because no matter how many wins you have those good moments in your life when it comes to raising children, you are going to walk away with some losses too.
Nothing really works every time and we always need to try something different until we find something that works for your kids. Sometimes a method, toy or technique will work, sometimes it won’t. Anyone who tells you different is either lying, delusional or clearly doesn’t spend enough time with their children. But, I can honestly say that after doing this for for a few months she barely ever wakes up upset and has learned that all she has to do is shout a little bit because she has learned that I will almost always be there pretty quit with a soothing voice and smiling face.
Everything you need to know about raising a healthy child is easier, for all the parties involved, as long as both parents’ on the same page are persistent and consistent. This is key! If it takes the average adult 20 to 40 repetitions to turn develop a conscious habit into a subconscious one… then a children will more often likely need a lot more persistent repetitions than adults do to learn how to function without being told what to do.
Welcome to the world of parenting! Your gonna love/hate it!!! hahaha….