It all started very innocently. It was just a simple burp cloth to use just in case our new doll was one of those babies who spit up everywhere. It was never meant to turn into a vice but somehow it did, from day one in China. Somehow the burp cloth made it off my shoulders and into her hands. Then it made it into her mouth...It has been there ever since--UNTIL NOW.
This is about two hours after we got her. She finally calmed down and fell asleep. There's "rag" on her but not yet in her mouth...
Lindy's primary soothing mechanism of choice has been any type of terry material burp cloth, affectionately coined as, "rag." At first, we brought it everywhere with us. You can see glimpses of it in many of the pictures in China. Then we limited it to bedtime only, although we've caught her sneaking hits here and there when we forgot to hang it out of reach. She's even stooped to digging them out of the hamper in her room. Addiction is an ugly thing.
There have been many nights where Lindy has "lost" rag in the sea of other things in her crib and we've had to come find it for her. I guess that made us the enablers. She sucks on the rag and sometimes it is soaked when I get her up from nap or in the morning. To me it is a gross, smelly, germ factory. To her it is comfort and a necessity for rest.
On a plane about 30 minutes before landing. Finally sleeping with rag in hand and mouth...
We had been telling Lindy for a long time she didn't need rag and that she needed to give it up. Turning three seemed like a good milestone for her to get rid of her nasty vice. She really seemed on board with the idea and talked a lot about not needing it when she turned three. There were many mornings where she'd hand it to me and it would be virtually dry. However, on the day she turned three she wasn't so much into the idea of giving it up for good.
On a camping trip last October...Note the gold and green bear. His name is Dorsey Levens. He (Dorsey Levens, not the bear) is a former Green Bay Packers player. He was a gift and now is also a must have in bed. When he gets "lost" at night, we hear, "Need Dorsey. Need Levens."
I took rag away from her during her nap on her birthday. There's no other way but cold turkey. I had never heard her wail like that. It was painful to listen to. After 20 minutes of what sounded like near hyperventilation, I caved. I was afraid she'd hate me for ruining her third birthday (silly, I know). On Saturday, which was two days after her birthday, we tried again at nap. She cried and screamed for about two solid hours. She even made herself a little sick which I had never seen happen. Can you say massive temper tantrum? I knew giving it back to her would mean giving in and her winning...Saturday night came. More tears and crying. There were also about three trips during the middle of the night into her room for other things...Sunday came. No tears. Just more delays and random requests for water, blankets, certain animals.
It is now Wednesday. Knock on wood, things seem to be going well. She's making it through naps and the night much better. I think she may have found a substitute with a very soft Little Giraffe lovey she has because its corners are somewhat wet. However, I'm keeping my eyes open and am trying to tell her it is just to touch because it is so soft and not to put in her mouth.
I am proud of Lindy for being a big girl and putting away her yucky habit in a matter of a couple days. She really did much better than I thought! Now if I could only learn from her and give up my vices--chocolate, cheese, etc...
****Note: This post is written about Lindy in a spirit of lightness. It is not meant to poke fun at or be offensive to anyone who has struggled with or is currently struggling with addiction of any sort or in any manner.****