Tuesday, June 10, 2008

See ya later sucker!

After 151/2 months, five two-packs and three nights of crying, we are rid of these ...
They. Are. Out. Of. Our. Lives.

Thank God.

Can I get a hallelujah?

I rue the day we put these little suckers in the mouths of Trace and Alysse. While I'll concede all babies have a sucking reflex after birth that needs satisfying, Alena and Alivia survived the first couple of months without pacifiers.

Yes, there were periods when Alena and Alivia were in that "really new" newborn stage and a pacifier would have soothed or quieted them quicker than anything else. HOWEVER, good sense made us resist plugging their little pouts with a pacifier.

Having been born four weeks early, however, it was as though Trace and Alysse had an even greater need to suck than a full-term baby, so pacifiers seemed the most logical, peaceful solution. An added bonus was that having two hungry mouths to feed sometimes at the same time, a pacifier would buy a few minutes of patience from one baby while I finished feeding another.

As the dynamic duo reached four months, I already hated seeing the pacifiers in their mouths. Their strong need to suck had passed and the pacifiers had become an easy way to soothe them when other measures would work just as well, so we restricted pacifier use to their cribs. Baby in bed, pacifier in mouth. Baby picked up from crib, pacifier placed on crib railing. This became our new approach to the silicone demons.

And so it went for well over a year. Used only to soothe them to sleep, I knew they needed to go, but kept waiting for a way to make an easy break. Lesson learned ... easy break and pacifiers shouldn't be used in the same sentence.

At their one-year check up, I questioned the pediatrician about ridding ourselves of what was now nothing but a bad habit in getting to sleep. "Will we ever reach a point when we can explain the pacifiers are going away and they understand and be okay with it?" I had asked her.


Okay, logical answer, just not the one I was looking for. Maybe the Easter Bunny could take them in exchange for baskets? Perhaps we could charitably give them away to other babies? Something?

"They will never give them up willingly," she explained.

I knew this was the case, but wanted some super-secret, no-cry method by which to make these monsters disappear from our sleep routine. Not happening. Crying ahead.

After dragging my feet and exhausting all the excuses I could dream up, we finally made the break. There was some crying, but more yelling and whining. Alysse was far more attached to hers than Trace was to his; however, hearing her cry down the hall sent him into tears as well.

Three nights of delayed sleep and days of pre-napping fits and we're done. All pacifiers hit the trash after night one. Having listened to Alysse squawk for 20 minutes, there was going to be no turning back.

So, let me hear that "hallelujah," those little suckers are gone.

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