Why do they call a good nights sleep "sleeping like a baby"?? I've now had three babies and I've decided that "sleeping like a baby" should really refer to someone who wakes us screaming every few hours and has to be soothed back to sleep, lol.
So obviously the lack of sleep is getting to me. :) Every night we come up with a new theory about how we're going to get Clarissa to sleep and none of our little schemes have been working.
That brings me to a Korea story that I haven't told yet, and you get a free Korean culture lesson at the same time! Aren't you glad you stopped by my blog today? :)
In ancient Korea, houses were heated by piling hot stones underneath the house, which made the floors warm. Since that's where the heat came from the floor, that's where they slept. They slept on padded mats called a "yo". Even now that there are modern heating systems, most Korean homes still have heated floors and it's still very common to sleep on the floor. They sleep on a yo and the cover themselves with an "ee-bool", which us basically a comforter. In the morning they roll it all up and put it in the corner. It's nice and tidy!
So that's how Clarissa has been sleeping for the past 8 months. She's never slept in a crib as far as I'm aware. She was sleeping on a yo with her foster parents.
Clarissa's foster mother has never fostered before and after Clarissa she decided that she doesn't want to do it again because it was too emotionally difficult to love her and then have to say goodbye. So all the baby things that she had in her house belonged to Clarissa in her mind. Most foster parents keep all the baby things for the next baby but Clarissa's foster mother really wanted all of Clarissa's things to come to the US with her. That's just another testament to how much Clarissa was loved by her foster mother and I appreciate that so much, but taking all of her clothes and toys and things home was kind tricky because we only had so much room in our suitcase.
We showed up for one of the meetings at the Korean agency last week and found that the foster mother had brought us Clarissa's bedding. I had heard her mention that she wanted to give us bedding for Clarissa, but I was only vaguely aware of what Korean bedding was exactly. So I was quite surprised when the foster mother presented us with two GIGANTIC bags of absolutely adorable but really big and fluffy bedding. It consisted of a yo, an ee-bool, a pillow and several decorative pillow cases of different sizes.
Her foster mother just couldn't stand the thought of Clarissa going to the US without Korean bedding. I love her for how much she cares about Clarissa, but when I saw those bags I started panicking a little! There was absolutely no possible way that we were ever going to be able to pack it in our suitcases. Even if our suitcases had been empty I it wouldn't have fit! We told the social worker that we didn't know what to do because there was no way that we were going to be able to get all that home. He called in another social worker and they had a long conversation in Korean about what to do about the bedding and eventually a few more people were called in to confer about our predicament.
I feel bad because I think the foster mother got in trouble for it a little. The foster parents aren't really allowed to give any gifts that can't easily be packed in a suitcase. But since she had it there we definitely didn't want to turn it down. It seemed really important to the foster mother that Clarissa have her bedding.
So finally the social workers dug a huge box out of a closet or something and they stuffed all the bedding inside of it. Then the carefully taped it all up, even added a handle for us and we decided that we'd be taking it home on the airplane with us.
I have to admit, I was a little stressed out at the thought of hauling that huge box of bedding all over Seoul and getting it through the airport with the rest of our suitcases and Clarissa. We had SO much stuff to bring home with us and I had no idea how we were going to manage it all.
But we did manage it somehow and the big box of bedding came home with us. Fortunately since we had a lap ticket for Clarissa on the way home we were allowed one more piece of luggage and we were able to count the box. We had to drag the box to an over sized luggage area, but we did manage to check it in. (of course when you enter the US you have to pick up your luggage and then recheck it if you have a connecting flight, so we had to get all of our luggage in San Francisco, haul the big box through that airport and recheck it for our flight to Boise! I do admit to cursing that box a bit, lol.)
Anyway, to make a long story shorter (you know I don't tell short stories!) we did manage to get home with the box and when I was finally able to unpack it all and really look at what it was, I was SO thrilled that we hauled it halfway around the world because it's awesome! I never got a good look at it in Korea, so I wasn't completely sure what it was until I got it all out of the box at home. It's an absolutely adorable pink yo with little cartoon girls on it and then a matching ee-bool and matching pillows. Its all pink and fluffy and seriously, it's the cutest thing I've ever seen. It's what a little girl would be sleeping on in Korea, but it's something that you never see in the US, so I'm so excited that we got to bring it home with us and have a little bit more of Korea in our home.
I've been letting Clarissa take naps on it during the day and she absolutely loves it. I can tell that she's used to sleeping on the floor and that's where she's the most comfortable. I hesitated letting her sleep on it at night though because I have a fear that she's going to wake up in the middle of the night and crawl away and we're not going to know it. In the US we're using to corralling our kids in a crib until they're toddlers! Also, we wanted Clarissa to sleep with us at night to help with bonding and I didn't think that everyone sleeping on the floor was going to be an option.
But after a week of sleepless nights with a baby who hates sleeping in our bed, EVERYTHING is an option. :)
So last night I gave in. I put the yo on the floor in our bedroom and that's where Clarissa and I slept. Clarissa had the best nights sleep she's had since she's been here. I can tell that she was relieved that her idiot parents had finally figured out that she wanted to sleep on the floor, lol. I can't say that I slept well though! It's a twin sized yo, so we both sort of fit on it but I kept waking up all night finding that I had rolled off of it and was sleeping on the carpet. That's hilarious to me now, but it wasn't so much at two o'clock in the morning, lol.
So tonight I'm on to a new scheme. I think maybe I'm going to get out the foam pad and the sleeping bag and see if I can have a camp out next to her and not on the yo. She won't sleep unless I'm next to her, so putting her on the floor and me in the bed just isn't an option at the moment. When she's falling asleep she will keep opening her eyes to check and make sure I'm still there. She also holds on to my hand or my arm while she's falling asleep for security. It kind of breaks my heart for her, really. That poor kid is terrified that another mommy is going to leave her.
So one way or another I'll stick close to her, even if that means I have to sleep on the floor for a while. Eventually I hope that she decides that this mommy isn't going anywhere and she'll be more comfortable sleeping alone. In the meantime, I'll do whatever makes her feel secure.
But I have to admit, I snuck away from her this morning at about 5am when I was sure that she was sound asleep and I crawled back into my bed for a bit. That bed has never felt more comfortable! I didn't fall back to sleep though because I was afraid that she would wake up and find me gone.
Here's a picture I took last night of Clarissa in her yo.
I'm going to get better photos of it later because it really is SO cute! Normally I don't post photos of Clarissa on my blog, but you can't really see that much of her face, so I decided that it was OK. I won't make you go to dropshots for this one!
And speaking of photos, my big plan is to do a family photoshoot with Clarissa tomorrow. I have the cutest dress that I've been dying to put on her and the fall leaves are so pretty right now, so I'm hoping to go outside and get some fun pictures. Hopefully she'll be in the mood for photos and the weather will cooperate. If so, check back later in the weekend and I might have some fun photos to share! :)