When Nicolette was around 6 1/2 to 7 months old it became obvious that it was time to move to the crib. She was starting to wiggle and toss and turn more and more during the night and was waking up (I think) because she was uncomfortable and unable to move freely while snuggled in my arms. For 2 1/2 months we STRUGGLED to transition to the crib through chronic and incessant night wakings. Finally at around 9 months old, Nicolette seemed to have gotten the hang of sleeping in her crib. I was able to rock her until drowsy and put her in the crib. She'd fuss a little but I could rub her back or even lay down on the floor next to her and hold her hand and she'd settle down and fall asleep with little drama.
Around 11 months old she suddenly stopped letting me put her down. We'd nurse and rock and she'd get drowsy but start squirming, fussing and eventually crying. If I continued to hold her and rock her she'd work up into a full blown cry. I' put her in the crib and immediate crying, popping up to all fours or standing. I try patting her back, rubbing her, laying her back down, laying down on the floor next to the crib...no matter what I do, the crying just escalates and escalates. Pick her back up and rock her, more wiggling, squirming and crying.
Against everything that my gut tells me, I lay her in her crib, kiss her and tell her that I love her and that it's time to go night-night and I walk out of the room. She stands up, reaches for me out of the crib and cries. She usually continues to cry from anywhere to 1-10 minutes while she crawls around and changes positions a few times and is then fast asleep. I HATE IT!!!! I hate thinking that she is sad when she goes to sleep.
Those who know Nicolette know that she almost NEVER cries. Honestly, I'm not exaggerating. She's just a very easygoing, good natured baby. She doesn't fuss or whine when she's hungry, hardly ever cries when she bumps or bangs herself...nothing. And we don't have this same issue with naps. She'll even play in her crib before or after naps most of the time. So to have to hear her cry at bedtime EVERY night is pure torture for me. I'm out of ideas and don't know what else to do but let her cry. If I stay in the room she continues to stand up and reach for me and gets more and more worked up until she can't fall asleep. If I hold her she wiggles and squirms and cries and continues to get worked up. I honestly don't know what is "the right thing" to do.
So point being...never say never. I'm now a CIO mom and I hate it.
If you have any other tips to share please let me know. I'm out of ideas and am sad about this every night.