We had a visitor to our house on New year’s day. He was expected by the twins but they were not too happy to hear that he had indeed arrived and fulfilled his exchange. The exchange was they give up their dodees ( soothers ) after he (Santa) had left them big bicycles as an extra special Christmas surprise. Mammy and Daddy had also treated them to an extra special present for being such big boys and girls and giving their dodees back to Santa,so the little babies could have them.
How hard could it be?
Let’s just say I don’t call my blog Dodeestodaquiris for any old reason!
It all started out from the days they were born , at a day over thirty five weeks gestation and on the advice of the NICU team, we gave them their first dodees. Now studies have shown that they are proven to reduce the risk of SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome) and after a high risk pregnancy ,those little pieces of rubber were hastily bought if they could help in any way to leave our little ones at less of a risk. Sadly SIDS does still occur with children using aids, but it was some form of peace of mind for us.
Fast forward to four months of age and the dodee war cry rang out nightly in our home. Every night was the same, two babies crying, desperately searching for the fallen dodee. Many’s a night was spent up and down like yoyos putting them back in little mouths. Online forums were searched, friends were engaged in late night conversations.
Do we go cold turkey now? But they are great for soothing and settling.
If you don’t do it now you will have a battle on your hands when they’re older ( hmm ok maybe they did have a point after all ).
It’s cruel to take it off them when they’re so young.
Our decision? We decided to go out and purchase a bucket load of them and put at least four into both cots on a nightly basis. Within a night or two order was restored, night wakings still occurred but the twins became experts at finding them themselves.
And so the early years trundled on , attachments were formed. The age of one was passed and the odd comment that we were now in trouble,that they’d never take them out of their mouths was passed, but to be honest for us we didn’t mind. Speech was not affected, in fact they were both flying it, teeth came in normally and didn’t buck out, and they were such a great comfort when the kids were sick or in the car. What harm were they, they were hardly going to go to secondary school with them!
Eventually as the twins got older we started to casually chat about babies and dodees and walks through fairy woods saw lots of dodees hung from trees by other children. We started to plant the seeds around the time of their third birthday during the Summer that the time might be coming to give them away. We had already successfully cut them to bedtime and car journeys also but then sickness entered the house and a few other things arose which meant dodees started to sneak back into the day and for longer periods of time.
Long story short, starting pre-school afforded us the opportunity to be dodee free. Seeing the baby rooms and the older kids with and without dodees helped the twins Easy peasy we thought, let’s float the idea of asking Santa for a special swap. An extra special surprise in exchange for them.
All was fine, perhaps too fine! until after a weeks grace from Santa( Mammy and Daddy did not want Christmas week to be filled with tears and tantrums from missing dodees, we wanted to make do with chest infections and snotty noses instead!) on New Year’s day, reality struck the twins and their little faces turned down, the lips quivered and eyes pooled with tears threatening to flood the sitting room. The dodees that they had left under the Christmas tree were gone. I stopped the word count after “dodee” was sobbed one thousand times by both kids.
I felt like the cruelest mother in the world, how could we take away their little comfort. Discussions with the other half , friends and on social media brought Santa back with a special pact. Dodees would return short-term, only at night-time and if they left the bedroom they would poof away in magic dust.
So far Santa’s compromise is working, now we just need to compose ourselves for the day when he returns to close out on his deal…..