The transition is going well. Sometimes, I think, a little too well; Oliver has not hit the wall that one would expect a fifteen-month old to crash into head-first when he realizes that the woman he knows as "Mommy" is gone and not coming back. Maybe I am underestimating the malleability that a 10 hour-a-day daycare setting will impress on a young child. I don't know. All I know is that while Oliver is not keen on letting me out of his sights, he's also not wailing in the corner ... which is precisely what Jo would have done. Atticus and Logan, not so much--that's the power of having an older sibling to hang on to, you know.
Oliver is learning the tough truth about sleeping, though. Turns out that he has had two deeply ingrained habits that we are in the process of (gently) breaking: number one is falling asleep in front of the television with a bottle and a blanket, and number two is being given a bottle every time he stirs at night. Because he slept in a bedroom with his fostermom and her two children, it was imperative that he be kept as quiet as possible. Having lived in an apartment with an infant, I know what that looks like--jumping to shush every whimper or threatening whine. In my case, I ended up with Logan sleeping cozily at my b**b for ten months while my husband and I got nary a wink. In Oliver's case, his fostermom filled the bill with one of the three bottles she kept ready at her bedside.
Seeing as how we don't have television, per se, there's no way that his habit of nodding off in front of the tube is going to be indulged. He's taken this quite in stride: Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? is apparently a reasonable substitute for American Idol. In a pinch, at least. I've been deliberate about establishing a solid routine of bath, story, bottle then bed while he's still fairly lucid. He's cried for as much as five minutes when I've laid him down, but he tuckers out fairly quickly. And lest you think I'm an absolute monster, I am still letting him have his binky to sleep with. Even though that drives me nuts. See, I'm not such a witch after all.
As for nighttime wake-ups, we've only had one significant event. The first night he was with us, Oliver's cold was so awful that he coughed and snuffed and snubbed through the first half of the night. When 1 a.m. rolled around, he had had enough. I gave him a bottle per his fostermom's instructions, but did it by picking him up, rocking him until he finished, and putting him back in bed. Guess what? That was no good, no good at all! Mr. Man wanted a leaking nipple in his mouth for the next few hours ... and he was incensed that I'd offered a poor facsimile of what he was used to getting. We went back and forth for about an hour--me soothing and patting and inserting binky, him relaxing, dozing off and then getting hopping mad the minute he realized I had no intention of letting him sleep with a bottle. Dh did his turn at the helm, too, don't worry: he has taken up post as Adult in Charge of Medicating Tonsillectomy Victim. That means he's up every four hours, like clockwork. Poor him.
I think we're getting the hang of this whole older-kids-and-a-baby thing. It's certainly different than life with three under five was back in the day. I'm having to remember all the tricks of the trade and balance the demands of raising children who can actually think beyond their next meal. It's a whole new world. Wonder what next week will look like?