Sunday, 11 March 2012

Sleep??? What a struggle!!!!

Somebody pinch me!!! Baby slept through the night last night. And at almost 7 months, I say FINALLY!!!!

My dear daughter has never been a good sleeper. When she finally learned night from day she was about 2 months. But even then she would only sleep 2 to 3 hours at a time. Naptimes are about 30-45 minutes long.  I can't tell you how many books I have read on baby sleep. I was starting to think night time would always be a battle for me.

About two weeks ago it got really bad. Baby would wake up literally every hour and would only go back to sleep in my arms. I would have to pick her up, put her on the boob or give her a soother and slowly she would drift back to sleep. Of course by the time I got back to sleep, it was almost time for her to wake up again. After about a week of this, I was so extremely tired and irritable. And I knew there had to be a reason. I thought it might be teething or a growth spurt. If that was the case there was not much I could do.

I went to a sleep seminar that my doctor was hosting. There wasn't much that I didn't already know. Establish a bedtime routine. Teach baby that bedtime is a good thing. Make sure you are consistent with bedtime. Teach baby how to self soothe. Blah blah blah…. I had a one on one with the doctor after the seminar was over and explained what I was experiencing. Her suggestion? Baby is too attached and I need to let baby cry it out. Yeah right, I can't lie in bed, listening to her scream for me, letting her get more upset and more awake, when I know I can get her back to sleep within 5 or 10 minutes. I just need advice on getting her to sleep longer stretches of time, not start her sleep training all over again with the opposite approach.

I went away feeling very defeated. Especially when I hear that there are younger babies sleeping through the night just fine.

One night, during diaper change, I discovered her feet were like icicles, and she was in a fuzzy sleeper. So I gave her an extra fuzzy blanket and tucked her in real good. She slept all the way till morning, 5 hours straight. What a simple solution to such a tiring problem!!! Since then, it has been great, although she still gets up once or twice at night. But I actually enjoy those special snuggle moments.

Everybody has a different view on sleep strategies for babies, but you have to find what works for you. For some, the cry it out approach works like a charm, but I don’t feel that approach is right for me or my baby. Every baby is different, and I know that many babies her age still wake during the night and are not ready to give up the middle of the night feeding.

What I learned through this is to try different approaches to addressing your baby’s night waking, there could be a simple solution staring you in the face!!!

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