In answer to the charge of spoiling my child, I plead 100% undeniably guilty.
Since the day he was born, either the hubby or I have rocked Nathan to sleep in our arms. I knew as the habit developed that I may regret it one day as I shopped for a rocking recliner big enough to accommodate myself and my 13 year old son while I rhythmically pat his bottom and sing "You Are My Sunshine." I was perfectly aware of the potential nightmare and loss of sanity we were facing when we finally decided to break this habit. My friends, the time has come.
I'm happy to report that it's gone very well so far. The very first night was tough, and Nathan's loathing of anything out of routine was compounded by the fact that we waited too late in the evening in the hope that he'd be too tired to put up a fight. As all of you experienced parents out there are shaking your heads and chuckling at us noobs, I'll readily admit that your suspicions are correct. He was overtired and feeling especially stubborn. Hubby ended up lying on the floor next to the playpen and talking the child to sleep. (Insert playful jab about the Hubster's ability to talk a person into unconsciousness here.)
Since then, at the risk of jinxing us, it's been fairly smooth sailing. A few fusses here and there but nothing major. I've tried to keep to a regular routine: bath, lotion & pjs, one cartoon with the lights off, 5-10 minutes of rocking with the soothing classical music/ocean waves cd playing, and then into bed.
I think the rocking time is built in there as much for me as it is for Nathan. From the very beginning, the nightly rocking habit was spoiling me more than it was spoiling the boy-child. I may have a harder time giving it up than he is. I just love it when he's so sleepy he starts turning his head one way and then another over and over in a futile effort to stay awake, then nuzzling into my neck and letting out the tiniest of snores. I like to bury my nose in his sweet-smelling curls, and his steady breathing and the symphony/ocean cd have lulled me to sleep more than once.
In a way I wish it weren't going so smoothly. I'd like to think he'll miss our drifting off to sleep in the chair together every night just as much as I do. Then again, I'm really enjoying my extra hour or so of free time in the evenings. I guess I'll just have to make the most of that nightly 5-10 minutes of snuggly-wuggly curl sniffing. That is, until he starts telling me, "Mom, do you mind? I'm 37 years old and I have to go to work in the morning."