Newsflash! Parenting is HARD. (Just kidding, this is not news at all.)
But seriously — they won’t eat. They won’t sleep. They won’t stop pooping on stuff. WHEN DOES IT GET EASIER? Well, every once in a while a clever mom or dad comes up with a parenting hack that’s saved their sanity, and now thanks to the glorious Interwebs, they can share it immediately with the world.
That’s precisely what happened recently when U.K. mom Laura Gerson shared a parenting hack she discovered that earned her a few extra hours of sleep per night. And after sharing it with The Motherload, a U.K.-based parenting site, it went viral. Like super viral. Because it’s the best idea ever.
For any parent who’s had a pacifier baby, you know that when that little bugger loses her paci or binkie or dummy (as the U.K. moms call it), they’re suddenly WIDE awake. And now you’re awake. And you’re both desperately searching for it so everyone can go back to sleep. But what if your sweet cherub could find her own pacifier without needing you? Sounds pretty glorious, doesn’t it?
As Gerson explains, that’s exactly what led her to dream up her very own parenting hack, which she described in her post on The Motherload as a “weird bedtime routing” that’s actually worked.
“We’ve got a video monitor and we were watching her one night trying to find her dummy when she woke up and couldn’t find it,” she tells Babble. “So I just put a couple in there the next night, and she lost one down the side of the cot. So over the next few nights just put more in there.”
One night when her daughter Amelia was sleeping surrounded by 10 pacifiers, Laura snapped a photo and shared her newfound parenting hack with fellow Facebook moms. And it caught fire. Why NOT throw a handful of pacifiers in there if you know that’s all baby wants to sleep well?
Laura was also quick to share with Babble that Amelia “isn’t a total [pacifier] fiend and doesn’t even have them through the day really but it really soothes her having them through the night, and having more in there makes it easy for her to find one, and hold one (or two).”
No worries, girlfriend. I had a couple babies who actually were pacifier fiends and sucked on those things just about everywhere we went that first year. No judgment here. And I too threw a handful of them in my kids’ cribs at night. Mommy needed sleeeeep. I can remember one road trip traveling to see family — we’d lost most of them on the drive, as they’d fallen into the dark abyss that was our mini-van as we drove across Iowa. Well you can be darn sure we pulled into a 24-hour Walmart and bought five packs of those suckers (pun intended) so we’d be prepared once we rolled into Grandma’s house!
Although she needs no justification, Gerson tells Babble that “it just made sense that if that was all she wanted to make it easier for her to get to them without getting herself stressed when she couldn’t.” After all, she says, “Happy baby, happy mummy!”
Happy baby, happy mummy indeed. I’m pretty sure you’ve got the No. 1 rule of parenthood down pat, Laura!