An unfiltered fire hose of flaming condemnation

If I had hair to let down, this would be an instance of doing so

On Friday night Jon and I attended a Christmas party, meaning we actually prepared to leave the house and be away from our bed past 8PM. The magnitude of this event cannot be overstated, and to make sure that we went through with such crazy behavior I hired a babysitter. So that we couldn’t at the last minute go, but wait a minute, our bed is right there. And there are our pillows. And I don’t think my body would mind if I just fell over in these jeans and slept until February.

Here is where I tempt the Universe and tell you that Marlo is sleeping through the night. From 7PM until 7AM. In her crib. Now that I’ve put it out there she will never sleep again, but it was good while it lasted!

And before you call me a baby killer you should know that there was minimal crying involved. We just read some great advice somewhere that said to treat every kid as if they are the sixth of eighteen children. You’ll get to them sometime, but right now the fifteenth kid is burning down the kitchen, so whoever is fussing right now will have to suck it.

We eventually got to her fussing, just not as quickly as we did with Leta, when we thought fussing meant DYING. And so she learned to self-soothe pretty early on. Now we just snuggle for a few minutes, and then we put her down for the night or for a nap and she curls up with her thumb and pretty much tells us to leave her alone. Like, don’t you have seventeen other children to deal with?

And… let the accusations of neglect roll in!

Anyway, she’s been doing this for about a month, and it’s taken us just as long to retrain our bodies to sleep for more than two hours at a time. And I’m still in the habit of going to bed minutes after putting her down for the night. One night last week I made it all the way to 9:30PM, and I mean ALL THE WAY, and the physical strength it took to reach that milestone was so exhausting that I slept through the night for the first time since June. ATTENTION SEXUALLY ACTIVE SINGLES: READ THIS PARAGRAPH AND PUT ON A CONDOM.

Since the babysitter was putting aside her time for us, I felt like we couldn’t back out. We were FORCED! To be HUMAN BEINGS! And Jon had serious concerns that I might fall asleep in the car on the way to the party. However, I had a molecule of anticipation to keep me awake, excitement over the possible reaction to the white elephant gift we were bringing, a copy of Put Hemorrhoids and Constipation Behind You.

What? What did you expect? I know it’s not the best white elephant gift you’ve ever heard of, or even in the league of the guy we knew growing up who lost an eye in Vietnam and would routinely give away his fake eyes AT MORMON CHRISTMAS PARTIES. That still gives me the willies, the idea of opening up a box only to have A SINGLE HUMAN EYE looking up at you. I mean, what do you say to that other than, please call 911 because I’M HAVING A HEART ATTACK.

Unfortunately, I neglected to wrap the book in a large box, so it lingered miserably toward the end of the exchange, no one wanting something so tiny, I guess. And by that point in the party there were at least three men so wasted that they were having to prop themselves against furniture to remain upright, and what do you know, one of them was the last to grab a present. And the only thing left? A book about hemorrhoids! Funny, right? I guess not so much when you’re drunk, because when he opened it, his face contorted angrily and he yelled, “Put hemorrhoids and compensation behind you? What does that even mean?

Hemorrhoids and compensation.

Then he started running (stumbling) around with it to show people just how stupid he thought it was, and at one point a helpful woman started going CONSTIPATION. IT SAYS CONSTIPATION. And he was adamant that no, it says compensation RIGHT THERE. Stupid, stupid compensation.

And I’m not even kidding, more than one woman walked up to me and asked if there were any good tips inside.

  • reluctantcrafter

    We were also evil let them cry it out-ers. Even close friends, I mean people I’ve know all my life, had something to say about it. You know, people with ONE baby, not TWINS. I never let them scream or anything. There is a difference b/n self-soothing and a completely unhappy baby. They’re 6 now and good sleepers, which means I sleep, which makes me happy. And you know the saying, when mama’s happy…
    May the sleep gods continue to shine their light upon you.

  • mncz

    Ooh, dooce, thanks to you today I put my 6 week old in her crib for the first time and, oh my god, after 40 minutes or so of effort she fell asleep there like a tiny angel. Up until then she would not sleep anywhere else but in my arms, and she gets heavier every day.
    Her fussing and crying still makes me cringe, but I start to see some benefits in enduring it for a little while.
    And I can do my nails for the first time in two months. Oh, the joy!

    Also, since there is the wonderful edit option, I have to add that I love to read your Leta archives to prepare myself for what is to come, and I am already thankful to you in advance for a motivation to skip the binky. All the people who tell me it will help my tiny one to sleep – who knew its exactly the other way around?

  • PEnser

    How??? How do you do it? Mine is 5 mths old and still waking up throughout the night and won’t lay down when she’s tired without screaming. She even cries when I try to rock her to sleep. I’m jealous.

  • SusanMD

    At a similar type of Christmas gift exchange, I once gave a used-looking copy of Sex for Dummies, with most explicit and outrageous pages flagged with post-it notes and key paragraphs and pictures highlighted in yellow. Hilariously funny, I thought, as I had received the same book at the same party the previous year, as everyone in the room would know, and now this year I was nine-months pregnant so book must work etc. What a riot, I mused while wrapping it up. The guy who got it, however, just looked slightly confused and appalled.

  • Laura B

    No one else has Gone There, so I will.

    I am not a fan of sleep training, BUT there is more than one good way to raise a baby, and I know y’all are great parents.

  • Music for Mother and Child

    Our daughter never slept alone when she was a baby. I don’t believe in letting babies sleep alone. It’s unnatural!

  • heatherL

    o.k. that “Butternut” photo – unbelievably adorable, beautiful and cute – i want to squeeze her too!!

  • norarachel

    Best white elephant gift ever: home facelift kit.

  • brooke

    I NEED THAT BOOK! is there a chapter on anal fissures? i have those too!

    (p.s. i’m only 30)

  • marielleisgreat

    The limit was $25 and one person contributed a live hamster in a cage, concealed in a giant gift bag. “And I am not even kidding,” it was a cage with a water bottle, food, wheel, the paper bedding, etc., like some miracle $24.99 “hamster package.” Amazing. Luckily, an 8 year-old with very accommodating parents ended up trading for it.

  • renaemcalister

    YAY for sleeping babies and a night out! Marlo is about the cutest thing ever.

  • Trina

    Congrats on the 12 hour sleeps! I can’t wait for my little squirt to start, she’s getting there, if only her 1st two teeth would stop hurting to let her, poor thing.

    Marlo’s so squeezable!!!!

  • former-miss-know-it-all

    bearing, THANK YOU! Wouldn’t we all love to be a granola-crunching-baby-wearing-nursing-till-their-nine mother! Seriously, to have that child know without a doubt how much we love them, and to get to meet every need without a moment of hesitation. But then baby number two comes a long, and what do you do?! You can’t wear them both at the same time. Your queen bed doesn’t really fit a whole troop of people. It just doesn’t seem to work as well if you are having more than one child. For one thing, it’s a bit of a blow to numero uno, if that is indeed what he has been brought up to believe- that he is numero uno. Raising children who feel loved and secure but also realize that the earth doesn’t revolve around them is a tricky balance. Thanks for the laugh!

    And Heather…can we just cut all the b.s. and be best friends? I mean, as much as I love foreplay, I can tell that we are destined to be BFF’s so let’s just get on with it already. 🙂 Now that I have truly freaked the living shit out of you..know that I am not insane (diagnosed) but I truly thank the god of solstice for you, right along side Cozy Shack chocolate pudding, travel size vibrators, and The Colbert Report. admiration runs THAT deep.

  • cinddmel

    Congrats on Marlo sleeping thru the night, really hoping she continues to do so.
    And the white elephant gift choice was a good one – it’s supposed to be something that you and probably no one else will really use, but at the same time will find funny! That book would have gotten a lot of laughs at our Christmas party.
    By the way Marlo is totally squeezable 🙂 she gets more adorable with every picture you post – and she’s got the cutest smile ever!!

  • moooooog35

    If I could get compensated for my hemmorhoids, I’d be able to finally delete my Craigslist account.

    Some of these ladies can be VICIOUS.

  • dustoff109

    It is nice to be remembered. I don’t remember traumatizing any of you with my glass/plastic eye. I do have an extra one if you are interested. This is my first time to read your blog. My daughter called LATE last night when she saw the post and the mention of my eye. I have fond memories of you and hope you are doing well.

  • thatssobabbit

    at least you get to go out together! Husband and i are now on segregated evenings out!

  • allegrapostsforrose

    I laughed so much about the drunk guy picking the “Put Hemorrhoids and Constipation Behind You” book (thanks for the laugh … I need some) I forgot the best part: that Marlo…oh adorable Marlo is sleeping through the night.

    I have to say…I am a single Mom with a 5 year old girl and I jumped every time my daughter cried. Bad move. Let them wait. If I had another child a) they would start out in the crib from the beginning b) I would let them cry and not jump at their every whim c) I would take the darn bottle away as early as possible.

    It is hard for her to self-soothe…although when she needs to go to sleep…she sleeps! And, she is quite sweet..but boy….she doesn’t have a problem telling me or anyone else if she likes or doesn’t like something and that can be embarassing (obviously I have forgotten how to spell embarassing and I’m not lookin it up to change it!)

  • Keinev

    Randomly got on new service, cool thing, it is possible to do great congratulatory pages, there’s even a page of crisis, make attempt)


    Too freaking funny. We have an open house on Christmas Eve, and my two best friends and families stayed really late (we had a fabulous time), I made it to midnight! But, I was so tired that the sometime during the final hour an half I swear I was hallucinating and thought why am I torturing myself, there’s no one here, go to bed.

  • aussiemuse

    Michelle is 5 months old and WAS sleeping quite well until our Christmas visit to Salt Lake. All bets are off now that her routine was so rudely interrupted for a week! Now that she has had a week of enjoying the all-you-can-eat buffet at the all-night diner we call boob cafe, you would think she is DYING in her crib. I am completely to blame!

    BTW, my step-mom who moonlights at “The King’s English” gave me a signed copy of “It Sucked…” for Christmas. AWESOME!!!

Heather B. Armstrong

Hi. I’m Heather B. Armstrong, and this used to be called mommy blogging. But then they started calling it Influencer Marketing: hashtag ad, hashtag sponsored, hashtag you know you want me to slap your product on my kid and exploit her for millions and millions of dollars. That’s how this shit works. Now? Well… sit back, buckle up, and enjoy the ride.

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