My DD will be 4 in 2 weeks. About 2 weeks ago, she had to give up her pacifier because it was affecting her bite significantly. (She was only using it at nap/bedtime.) I feel very strongly that she still has a strong need to suck, as the pacifier was the only thing that could calm her down sometimes when she got very upset.
Her inability to self soothe has been an ongoing issue, made more pronounced by the fact that she's had to give up the one thing that did help soothe her. She's having such a hard time getting to sleep. We try to have her in bed by 7:30pm but she'll stay awake until 9:30pm at night and then wake up at 6am. She hasn't napped since giving up the pacifier. Our usual routine was reading a story, rocking for 2 songs on her CD, and then bedtime. She'll sit there and kick her legs, click her tongue, drum her fingers, pull her hair, etc. I don't know if she's TRYING to keep herself awake, or if she just truly cannot sit still.
She has a lovey and one thing that's helped her is to rub her lovey on her cheek, so we try to encourage that since she did that on her own. We also encourage deep breathing, rub her back, do essential oils, soft music, very dark room, etc. We've asked her for HER ideas, talked about what it feels like to be relaxed, etc. It helps her to run around outside, but living in MN, having an 8 month old baby, and husband and I working opposite schedules makes it very tough for her to run like she needs to. And still, running around doesn't help a ton.
She has such dark circles under her eyes that today I decided I would rock her as long as it took to fall asleep (baby was taking a long nap so I could do this). I rocked her for 45 min. and finally I gave up because her continuously keeping herself awake made me too frustrated. My baby doesn't normally sleep this long, so I can rarely do this.
She can sleep in the car, but my baby hates the car so she will sleep and my baby screams.
I feel like this makes her sound like such a nervous child, but we often get comments on how mature, articulate, kind, polite, etc. she is for her age. People are shocked when I tell them this.
The few people who know we never did CIO have commented that this is likely because she never learned to soothe herself as a baby and now she REALLY doesn't know what to do. Sometimes I wonder if they're right...
Any ideas, suggestions?
(As I said earlier, this is not new since giving up the pacifier--just more pronounced. Also we have been working with her on learning to self soothe since she was very little so it's not like we've started doing all this in the last few weeks. Just FYI.)