It's been a long time coming, but we officially kicked the binkies to the curb this past weekend. Score for the Big Girl!!
We had been using Maribelle's second birthday as the start date for the launch of Operation No More Binkies, and we wasted no time in putting it into effect. In fact we started planting the idea of doing away with binkies into Maribelle's little noggin about a month or so ago. For me, the biggest hurdle was deciding just how we would get rid of her little naptime and nighttime friend. Some people suggested making gradual cuts into the binky over a period of time so that eventually there would be nothing left for Maribelle to suck on, but I knew that method wouldn't work for her, nor for me. It seems like a torturous way to draw out the inevitable act of actually taking away the binky, and I wanted the process to be as quick and painless as possible. Another suggestion I received was to take Maribelle to a store and have her pick out a new comfort item that would replace her binkie, such as a blanket, stuffed animal, etc. Same thing, that just doesn't fit her personality. She doesn't get very attached to material things and could care less about loveys, so that was also a no-go.
So what did we end up doing? Our daycare provider suggested the genius idea that we make a big deal out of passing down her binkies to her all-time favorite baby at daycare, Baby Sam. And I'm not kidding when I say he is Maribelle's favorite. We hear about Baby Sam no less than 10 times a day, and she completely dotes on him and gives him plenty of hugs and kisses. I knew right away that this method was a much better fit for Maribelle's personality and would totally reinforce the idea of binkies only being for babies, and not for big girls (which is what we had been telling her for the past month).
So we started prepping Maribelle for the big day about two weeks ago and kept reminding her that soon we were going to give all of her binkies to Baby Sam. Last Friday when I picked her up from daycare, we made a big deal out of handing over all three of her binkies to Baby Sam (well, actually his mom) in a little plastic bag, and she had no qualms about seeing them go. But the true test came that night ... and the next day at naptime, both of which went off without any crying or protesting for a binky. Honestly, this girl rationalizes and totally gets it, which is why I knew this method would work. Every time she would enter her room for naptime or nighttime over the past weekend, she would say to herself "No binkies. Binkies are for Baby Sam" and proceed to fall asleep on her own.
Our little girl is really growing up!