Soothe It!

I fell in love with this article the moment I read it. So I read it over and over and over again. It hit me on a personal level as the author talks about her struggle with her newborn’s refusal to sleep, and her questions on how we self-soothe as a baby through adulthood.
I remember being up multiple times a night with Ri and Mario trying to soothe them back to sleep and trying to calm my own emotions so I didn’t lose it and scream my head off. I immediately picked them up at their first cry and fed them or rocked them or read them a book. My arms became their soothing balm. I look back and think maybe I should have allowed them to cry it out more but in the end, I treasure that time since I now battle for kisses from them at ages 9 and 7. I got a lot of snuggle time with them when they were babes. A lot.
My self-soothing probably lied in the same experience – holding them in my arms. Rocking them back and forth until they calmed down and laid their small noggin’ onto my shoulder. Feeling each breath as if it was coming right from my chest. I would have never believed that I could function on 2 hours of straight sleep per night but I did – for many months. I also would have never believed that I would not rip someone’s head off after only getting 2 hours of sleep a night. But I never did (although I did cuss my sweet hubby out a few times…).
I appreciate that this article reminds us that we all must find our self-soothing measures or else we begin to go downhill – fast. As the author states:
It’s a million little moments when we do our best to draw on our own sensory genius, our own self-awareness, our own faith, to feel okay in the world.”
After a really crappy day at work, I still find that my go-to soothing measure is my kids. Playing frisbee with them, hugging them, drawing pictures with them, taking a walk with them – all of these activities calm me down and shift my perspective back to where it should be. And ice cream, that always works, too.

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