Dearest daughter. I’m afraid you’ll find out sooner or later. It may as well be now.
A college fund is out of the question. Because I spent all the money already.
I’ve spend all the money on SWADDLES.
I know it was foolish. Nearsighted. Selfish. It was just that the four-month sleep regression hit hard. And then it turned into the five-month sleep regression. And I began to think none of us would ever sleep again.
Who needs college if you are a walking zombie?
Sleep deprivation makes your momma do crazy things. Google and The Amazon Prime app help.
One morning, I spotted the UPS man pull up with boxes of swaddles and blankets promising a full night’s sleep. I had forgotten I ordered them during one of our 2 a.m. snuggle-a-thons.
Guess what? It turns out that none of the swaddles were the sleepy fairy dust I expected.
Here’s a sampling of your new collection. Since your college now needs to be self-funded, perhaps you can open a baby swaddle museum and charge admission or something. It will be a great opportunity to think outside the box and get creative. Welcome to the school of hard knocks.
The muslin swaddle blankets
We have about 1.2 million of these ready for action. They come in every pretty pattern and they are my favorite thing to buy at the baby store.
The plus side – These worked so well for the first few months. Plus they are so pretty and babies are adorable dressed up as baby burritos. They’re also so versatile – they work great for tummy time blankets (if you actually tolerated tummy time) and walks (if you actually tolerated the stroller).
The downside – At some point you got bigger and stronger, rendering these useless and terrifying hazards in the crib. Well, not totally useless. They’ll always make lovely, giant burp cloths. Which you also need.
The Halo sleep sack
These are tried and true for a reason. They are easy to find, affordable and safe. Genesis Hospitals even send every momma home with one to use. Your brother thrived in these, so we have a few on rotation. Plus I had to pick up a few pink options since I’m a sucker for gender roles and marketing.
The plus-side: These worked for about a month after you no longer wanted to stay in the swaddles. It was nice to have this option. And the sleep sacks are a lot easier to get on and off than creating a safe baby burrito.
The downside: Eventually you didn’t want those arms tightly swaddled at your sides – but you were still dealing with the startle reflex. We needed a new option.
The Merlin Magic Suit
This $50 straight jacket was recommended by a friend as a true sleepy-time miracle. The Internet agrees that no baby could resist the magic sleep dust from this baby product.
The plus side: The suit is hilarious. It’s almost worth $50 to see you sleep a glorified snow suit the prevents any movement.
The downside: You hated being zipped in with every ounce of your being. You screamed. You jerked. And then you just cried and cried until I took the suit off and resigned myself to another sleepless night. Also, it’s supposed to be close fitting, so it was not easy to get it on and off. Grab the Crisco and say a prayer.
This piece of zippered cotton also has an online cult following. And a feature on Shark Tank. The Internet told me it is the cure I’ve been searching for. So did a friend who swears by the thing.
The plus side: It’s a nice transition swaddle – which mean it minimizes your startle reflex while also allowing you more of a range of motion. It’s also light, which is great for warmer weather. And it covers the hands, which is awesome to prevent ice cold fingers waking you up in the middle of the night. You liked that you could still get your hand into your mouth for a little (futile) soothing.
The down side: You still don’t sleep all night in it. But I’ve almost given up on that at this point. (So, in other words. This is our favorite. So far. There’s still lots more Internet to search.)
I’m too tired to finish the full listing of our swaddle collection.
Suffice to say the others – like the Swaddle Love, Swaddle Me and the Ollie are all lovely options that didn’t help you sleep any better, either.
So now, we have nearly every swaddle that exists. And you still aren’t sleeping through the night. But I think this is a good lesson in parenting … wait for it …
There’s no magic.
There’s no one-size-fits-all cure.
There’s always going to be struggles and challenges and times this momma feels out of control.
But, you know what? I’ll always have my own momma intuition to rely on. And I’ll always have an insane and intense love for you and doing what’s best for you.
And, if all that fails – I’ll always have Amazon Prime and 2-day shipping.
P. S. In case your big brother thinks he is out of the woods – I spent his college fund on bottles and silly cups when he refused them all, too. Some things never ever change.