The Paci Fairy is either going to come out of this experiment as a hero or a heartless hag. And I will come out of this experiment with more gray hair for sure.
So, the quick advance of Camille’s third birthday has Lee and me thinking about things. Every day Camille is more girl and less baby, yet we’ve all been hanging on to some relics from her babyhood. The diapers are getting tiresome, but boy aren’t they convenient? The length of her body fills much more of her crib, but isn’t it nice to know she’s safe and snuggly in there? And she looks a little old to have a pacifier, but didn’t you see the way her body relaxed when she popped that paci in her mouth just before drifting off peacefully to sleep?
I know these things will be changing soon because it’s right to let go of them, but I also expect a few bumps in the road. So when I read an article in a parenting magazine the other day about the “Paci Fairy,” I latched on to the idea.
The Paci Fairy operates much like the Tooth Fairy: leave your pacis for the fairy and find a present when you wake up. I liked the idea, because giving up the pacis becomes the child’s choice, and there is a reward for the sacrifice instead of just a paci-less void.
Camille has already put in her request – she wants the Paci Fairy to bring a camera. She has been WAAAAAAY into cameras lately, picking up nearly any ordinary object, holding it up to her eyes and announcing, “It’s a camera! Say cheeeeese!” She’s done this with a piece of rope, the lid of a tupperware bowl, and most often, a small alarm clock. She regularly pushes the alarm clock buttons pretending to snap photos, and inadvertently turns on the alarm. We get surprised throughout the day when the alarm goes off unexpectedly.
So two days ago, we secretly bought her a camera. It’s a great one – takes real photos and videos, is pink (of course) and built to withstand the inevitable drops and dings of a child’s first camera. I can’t wait to give it to her because I think she’s going to love it, but apparently I will have to wait. I thought the lure of a new camera would be enough, and the first day we talked about it she seemed on board. “I’m all done with pacis!” she proudly announced.
But when bedtime neared, she told us, “I need my pacis just a little big longer.” And we’ve heard that refrain two nights in a row.
So now I’m wondering if this Paci Fairy business is going to work or not. If the choice is hers, is she ever going to be willing to part with her pacis? Or one day are we just going to have to tell her that the Paci Fairy is coming whether she likes it or not? Then she’ll envision this Paci Fairy as an evil entity who swoops down in the darkness and steals a child’s comfort.
What have we gotten ourselves into?