I feel like an ungrateful wretch for even confessing this… but at 4:30 a.m. while V. screamed in her dad’s arms, refusing or unable to go back to sleep, I pulled the pillow over my head and fantasized about jumping on a bus to Anywhere-But-Here with just my backpack and guitar, like I used to do in my early 20s. I took Greyhound all over the US (Missoula to Buffalo, Chicago to Dallas) and Bolivia (La Paz, Potosi, Santa Cruz, Cochabamba) and it was just me I had to look out for, just me I had to take care of. I wondered if maybe I could give her away to a deserving family. This sleep thing is killing me. I don’t know how much longer I can go on. The Baby Whisperer thing was working for a few days, but then we had a relapse and I don’t know why. I know I’ve been inconsistent with nursing her to sleep sometimes, and I know that’s what she screams for. But I can’t make up my mind whether it’s better never to do it or always to do it, and I know it’s one or the other. I remember very clearly the Psych 101 experiments with little white rats; if you rewarded their behavior at random intervals, they’d push that damn little lever over 100 times to get the food pellet. If they could be that persistent, why do I imagine she won’t be? It’s just that I begin with resolve and then fall apart in the face of the wailing mouth, squirting tears, arched back. I told T. that we’re giving it 3 more nights and then if she’s not doing better at sleeping through the night by then, we’re going to have to try the dreaded Cry It Out.
The thing is, she’s doing better – if by better you mean waking us up 5-6 times instead of 10-12. But that’s still too much. I have a chronic headache and I burst in to tears or yell at T. over every little thing. This can’t go on.