So then, day before yesterday... I took baby girl upstairs for her usual second morning nap around 10:30 or 11:00, gave her some nursies, left her in a daze on the bed and off to sleep she went. And then, also as usual, we went about our business, listening for sounds from her and peeking in occasionally. Normally she might spend a couple of hours up there, sleeping then waking and wanting us, or waking and looking around for a while and then wanting us, letting us know with her little grunts or cries. But yesterday the two hours passed and I checked and she was up there on her side, sucking away at her thumb again, eyes almost closed, little paw helping to hold her left hand in place at her mouth. It was taking every ounce of baby girl's concentration to control her arm and stop it from flying away and keep that thumb in her mouth so she could suck on it. Clearly she was busy, so I left her to it. She fell back to sleep, she woke and worked her thumb into her mouth and sucked again. I checked and checked all afternoon. At one point I snuck some photos and laid my face down by hers and smiled a little and whispered quietly, "I'm so happy for you. I love you so," very intentional about not interrupting her focus but just offering a little love and support. She squinted at me and made a few little grins at mine. I went to leave once and she let out a sad whimper, so I took that as a sign that she wanted me to stay and put my head down by hers for a little longer. And then I did leave and she slept more and sucked more. And when she was finally making noise and ready to greet us with smiles, it was after 4:30 in the afternoon! Yeppers, an almost six hour stretch on the bed. Then, yesterday we followed a similar pattern.
This concept applies to the boys as well, of course. And while we are less inclined to interrupt our children than our babies, we still do. Lunch need not be served at twelve o'clock on the dot if the littles are engrossed in what they're doing; a natural stopping point will come and then we can move on.