Lately, it's becoming increasingly evident that nursing Sophia to sleep just isn't working as well as it used to. Take yesterday for example, which I must admit was the worst day in Sophia's little life to date. The child only napped for 1 hour. In total. ALL DAY. It pretty much went like this: I'd nurse her, and she'd get sleepy and sometimes even fall asleep. So I'd put her in her crib, and a few minutes later she'd wake up crying. It was getting ridiculous, and I knew I needed to try something different. So after lunch, I decided to change the routine. I had heard about a sleep method that involves putting the baby to bed in a drowsy state—before she is asleep. The goal of this method is to help the baby learn to fall asleep on her own so that when she wakes up, she'll know how to go back to sleep without the boob. OK, so it's a nifty plan, but I think it was probably not the best idea to start this new routine on a tired, cranky baby who hadn't slept all morning. Oops.

After a full afternoon and evening of trying the new routine without success, we were all very grumpy and extremely tired because there was not much sleeping and a lot of crying (baby and Mommy). The crying started out as whimpering early in the day and escalated to frantic, exhausted, piercing screams by nighttime. OH MY GOD IT WAS HORRIBLE. We ended up taking Sophia for a car ride at 10:00 PM as a last resort. She did fall asleep in the car, but she woke up as soon as we got home. least we know not to waste our time or gas $$ on that “trick” again. All I could think was, "What if she NEVER goes to sleep? What then?"

At 11:00 PM, I'd had it with the new routine, and I just hoped she’d remember how to nurse to sleep. By 11:30 PM, she had either remembered the old way or maybe was just plain exhausted enough to conk out. I snuck off to bed, and we both slept for 4.5 hours, which is a typical sleep stretch for the babe. When she woke up at 4:00 AM, I decided to try the new routine again, pretty much thinking it wouldn't work and I'd end up having to nurse her to sleep (which, by the way, can take up to 2 hours in the middle of the night). So, I changed her diaper, fed her until she was sleepy, and then put her in her crib in a drowsy state, but not asleep. And Wonder of Wonders, she fell asleep on her own! The little Munchkin slept for 4 more hours and woke up in a splendid mood (all smiles) at 9:00 AM. Mommy got to sleep in too, so we are all feeling much, much happier today.

I started over with the new routine this morning: nursing her right when she wakes up and trying to keep her awake; playing with her for a bit; and putting her in the crib when she starts looking drowsy. Two naps down already, and she’s doing great. I guess it makes logical sense that well-rested babies (and Mommies) are better equipped to deal with change. Sophia has been sleeping for 2.5 hours now (the reason why I have time to write a post today). I may need to wake her up soon, before my boobs explode. Yes, there are days when exploding mammaries are a good thing. A very good thing.

1 Comment

good job baby-cakes!



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