The Dummy Fella Came
Now that Bear has passed the two and half years’ old mark, we decided it was time to say goodbye to her dummy, especially as in recent weeks it’s gone from a nighttime only habit to a screaming for it all day annoyance. So with half term here and sleep being less important than when I’m at work, we decided to take the plunge.
We waited until after our trip to London as a screaming, unhappy toddler would not have made the break memorable for the right reasons, and then, on Tuesday morning, before we left for the zoo, we took it away when she wasn’t thinking about it (for a brief moment, at least). And then told her we were going to give it to the Dummy Fella before bed. Now, I know most houses have a dummy fairy that comes to visit, but not ours. When Bunny was going through this same procedure, she was a little younger so couldn’t pronounce fairy. Instead, she would say what sounded like fella, so the Dummy Fella became a thing and stuck.
Of course, having a name for something, doesn’t necessarily make it any easier, so we had screaming from Bear almost all the way to the zoo, until I remembered there were some mini lollies in my handbag and we offered her one of those which cheered her up immensely. At the zoo, she was a bit clingy but not too bad, but she was also still overtired from our trip to London, so that was to be expected. But she did go and play by herself at the zoo’s softplay area, so managed quite well really.
However, she fell asleep in the car home, and when we got in and had to wake her, screamed blue murder for a good half an hour (or more – it certainly seemed like longer at the time, at least!). Eventually she calmed down and was better for the rest of the afternoon, clingy again, but not screaming her heart out (and breaking mine at the same time).
Then came the tough bit – bedtime. As I mentioned, she was still incredibly tired, so a meltdown ensued as expected, but this time, without the assistance of the dummy to calm her down, it kept going, on and on, and on. But I was determined that she have some input into giving the dummies to the Dummy Fella, so found a small paper bag, got some washi tape and gave it to her to decorate. She wasn’t interested, but her sister was! Then we put the dummies in it, and tied it up with some silver gift ribbon. At this point she asked to hold the bag and I asked her where we should leave it for the Dummy Fella to find it. She suggested the kitchen (through her sobs) and then when we got in there, told me to put it in the fridge! Unusual, but I wasn’t about to argue with an extremely sensitive two year old!
And then we tried to go to bed, but she asked to come downstairs with us. And then, when we got downstairs, insisted we turn all the lights off. And then, asked to go and lie on my bed with me, which we did. And then, she finally fell asleep. And stayed asleep until around 3am when she came in with us and screamed for her dummy a little, but not too much.
Then, in the morning, she woke up very jolly and was being completely adorable, chattering away without the dummy obstructing her conversation. And then, suddenly she spotted something unusual on the side. She recognised the bag from the night before, but already knew that it would be empty as it was hooked over a soft toy dog which of course was far more exciting than silly dummies.
She was thrilled and it was all going well until Bunny came through and threw a tantrum because the Dummy Fella had been much less generous when she’d given her dummies away. Oops! But all in all, day two went pretty well. She occasionally mentioned wanting her dummy, in her usual mid-tantrum whinge, but quickly moved on.
Then night two came, and again, we had a bit of a tough time with getting ready for bed and actually going to sleep, but got there eventually and although she woke a number of times in the night and had some mini tantrums for her dummy, again did quite well.
So now we are at day three without it. She’s been in London all day with the wife and apparently has a cold but also had a long nap so I hope this means she’s been ok. I am praying that she sleeps better tonight as I haven’t had a decent night’s sleep in over a week now, so am desperately in need of it! But, it’s certainly safe to say, we no longer have dummies in this house. So just the nappies to go now!!