This is the only thing I've found to be true when it comes to raising my daughter. Just when you think something is going well or "working," she changes her mind. For the longest time (well, since birth), I was the preferred parent. Suddenly, in the last month or so, she has become very attached to SJ. It is a combination, I think, of genuinely loving her father, but she also knows that he is much softer than me. He will give her that cookie that she wants, and he will let her fall asleep on the floor at bedtime. Since he is only home at bedtime on weekends, he is now doing bedtimes then. When I announce it's bedtime, she clings to him like a cat saying "Young-ee appa! Young-ee appa!" and shoos me away. Then, she insists that he lay with her on the floor until she falls asleep. Then we move her to her crib. I really don't care anymore. I have spent so much energy worrying about her sleep that on weekends I gladly make my way to the computer room and let him handle it.
On weeknights it's my duty since SJ is not home. She usually knows better than to bother getting dramatic with me, but the last few weeks have been trying. She kicks up quite a fuss at bedtime, wanting hugs, water, books, more hugs, basically anything to put off going to sleep. I tried everything from getting angry, to staying really calm, singing Twinkle Twinkle so many times... drama every night. Drawn out stressful bedtimes. Then, about a week ago during one bedtime battle, I just threw my hands up in the hair, exasperated. She was crying and overtired. I didn't say anything. I just turned and silently walked out of the room. Then, all noise ceased and she went to sleep. I thought it was a fluke, but the next night it worked again. I sang Twinkle Twinkle, she protested a little, but I turned around and left without saying anything. Sleep. So I've been doing this for around a week and it's really weird. If I say anything, like "night night" or "go to sleep," she freaks out crying. If I am silent, she happily goes off to sleep. That's what works for now.
So I was just sitting here thinking, wow, this is all like a guessing game. She can't talk well enough to say, "Hey, mom, can you just get the heck out of here and let me sleep?" So until we are communicating more efficiently, the guessing game will continue! I wonder what her preference will be next month.