One of the last things my OBGYN said to me before discharging me to embark on this glorious world of parenting was this: “I like to call the first child the great American experiment.” Thanks, Dr. B.
But after 19+ months, I’ve realized he’s right. Here’s how it goes. You get all this advice from family, friends, doctors, and Google, then you have to figure out what is going to work for your family.
• You create a hypothesis.
• You test it.
• You evaluate the results.
• You adjust accordingly based on your conclusion.
And you thought you’d never use the scientific method in real life.
I’ve been doing this cycle for longer than I want to admit, with a full night’s sleep as the goal. Lately, my observations led me to begin a trial during which we do not turn the tv on until after the nugget is in bed. And so far, it had been working pretty well.
Enter March Madness. If you know me, you know I really like MM. And my son has inherited this from me. The kid LOVES “backey ball”. So I had to make a decision.
Stick to my experiment and miss a couple of games.
Give in and turn on the tube.
You can probably guess which option I chose by the mere fact that I’m writing this. We put the game on, and I proceeded to become a human basketball goal for my tiny tot for the next hour. When the tv would catch his eye, he’d turn around and snuggle into my lap to watch approximately 90 seconds before he would be back up and staring in his own game. Those moments of holding him and seeing how intently he was watching the game are moments I will cherish.
I realized I needed to savor that moment of happiness because I would probably need it in the middle of the night when he was crying and kicking Adam in the face. But the eternal optimist in me still hoped that maybe tv wasn’t the variable that was affecting his sleep. Maybe he’s just getting better at it. WRONG.
Maybe it is the tv being on. Or maybe it’s the stuffy nose. Or maybe there is zero correlation and it’s all dumb luck. But after last night, I just don’t have the energy to try and figure out if my experimental deviation was a failure or not.