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SALT LAKE CITY — With having my seventh baby — a caboose! — I’m finding that while in many ways the experience is familiar, its still hard.
Last week was surprisingly tough, and momentous. We moved baby Bryson into his own crib. And even though it was definitely a good thing where sleep is concerned (and getting more of it), actually moving him out of our room, as well as immediate crying reach, suddenly seemed so unfeeling.
Added to that was our no-room-at-the-inn problem. Bursting at the seams, Bry was being moved to — our home office.
I had to remind myself of two things: one, that this is how it's supposed to be ... And two, this is one big transition in a long, long line of them so cheer up and buy Kleenex.
Being the said caboose, I so wanted to make this a lovely place for him. But reality and timing required that instead of a coordinating nursery with cute wall hangings and throw rugs, he would share a small manly space with my hubby’s papers, computer, and work paraphernalia. I worried about the lack of warm fuzzy toys and pictures surrounding him, and that his possible waking might bother my husband’s early work hours on the computer.
Where was my baby Pottery Barn moment when I needed it?
Instead of whining and wishing, we moved forward (OK, still wishing a bit). My hubby found a sweet, old-fashioned white crib and light-blue bedding, including a hand-stitched quilt of numbered fluffy sheep.
We assembled the crib ensemble in the evening, all of the kids coming and going, "oohing and ahhing," while we prepared his new corner. Lastly, we added a sound device that played ocean waves for him as white noise.
As we stepped back, something amazing had truly happened: the messy office we tended to avoid had, with our little one’s white crib and soft lit lamp, now been transformed into a tender, sweet space. I can’t explain it. Suddenly, we all wanted to be in there, together (did I mention we have eight of us at home?)
Bundling him up, we sang and kissed him while in the office, helping him get used to his new place. We cozied him with a few soft toys and blankets then let him be.
To his credit, after only a few cries, he went down like a champ. I walked back into our bedroom and, this is going to sound crazy and I’m tearing up as I type it, something had changed. His bassinet was gone and his presence wasn’t there like it had been.
I had to remind myself of two things: one, that this is how it’s supposed to be, transitions and moving him forward in ways that will make him happier and more confident. And two, this is one big transition in a long, long line of them so cheer up, and buy Kleenex.
Wonderfully, the next morning my husband brought Bry to me with tears still in his eyes. He shared that upon the baby’s waking, he had just held him for about half an hour in the office chair, rocking and holding and feeling that connection with him.
So it seems there is a sweet to bittersweet moments after all.
Connie Sokol is a mother of seven, a national and local presenter, Education Week speaker, and TV contributor on KSL’s “Studio 5”. She is the author of "Faithful, Fit & Fabulous," "Caribbean Crossroads," "Motherhood Matters," and "Life is Too Short for One Hair Color." Visitwww.conniesokol.comfor more.