I’ve always been a stickler for kids’ sleep. When I had Zander, I kept paper logs of his sleep for months. It was insane. Because he was our first I had no idea what I was doing in terms of his sleep. All I knew was that I needed to find a pattern and make some sense of it. Finally we hired a sleep doula and that was it. At 19 months he self-weaned and slept through the night.
With our second one, Violet, we did a lot of cosleeping. In fact we had our sleeping arrangements changed up so often that our babysitter giggled and shook her head every time she came over. At one point we were all sleeping in one room.
Violet was a hard one to wean because she refused to let go of breastfeeding. In fact I had to send Michael with both kids for a staycation so she would “forget” about the breast. She was already three by this time. It worked beautifully.
Now we are on our third with Willow. She started in the crib at 2 months and would sleep there happily. Not once has she slept through the night as of yet. She loves nursing – and just like the other two, she also snobbed formula whenver we tried giving it to her. Around 4/5 months she started to wake a lot and we ended up cosleeping with her.
She’d start out in the crib but would wake within 1-1.5 hrs if sleeping. I’d go to her, pick her up and nurse her. Then I’d lay her down in our bed and I’d call it a night. This went on until two weeks ago when I had decided to change the sleeping arrangements.
Since she was in our bed so much and taking up space, why not make it so her bed is part of ours? This way she coould be beside me but be in her own space. Well, it has been working well since both beds are at the same level. (I did have to hack it by using quick ties to secure the two beds together. )
Also for the few nights I’ve been nursing her with the lights off and then having Michael take over after to sleep her. I’ve noticed a small improvement in the length of sleep before the first wakeup. (I know most people would say that babies over 8 months should definitely be able to sleep through the night without feeding. But my other two babies did the same thing, too. I’m ok with it because after all, I did make them this way.)
Same goes with naps. I’ve been wearing her for her morning nap for the last 6 months and that’s the only way she’d sleep over an hour. Otherwise, car is about an hour max. Crib is 30 min max. (Yes, I know she needs to learn self-soothing skills.). Her afternoon one is usually in a stroller.
Today I attempted to sleep her in the crib. I had things I needed to do. I got about 25 min to myself (woohoo!) before she woke. So I went to her, tried to pay her bum back to sleep but it didn’t work. Instead I picked her up, sat and nursed her, rocking in the chair. I fell asleep with her for about 50 min.
Not the best sleep,but I got do some stuff around the house. In the afternoon she slept for an hour. Altogether not too shabby for a stirred up day in the sleeping arrangements department.
And here’s the best part of them all. Michael put her to be again after I nursed her. It’s almost midnight and she fell asleep at 6:42 pm. This is the longest she has slept for on her own at night since she was 3 months old!
I’m scared to go in because she’ll not only hear but also smell me and then wake up. I’m going to try and sleep a little in the room next door until she wakes.
Well, she just woke so I’ve got to go. That was good – 5 hrs and 20 min. Baby steps.