Friday, July 30, 2010

Sleep, where for art thou?

I'd like to start this post by noting that I'm writing it from my phone because LilMiss decided to fall back to sleep after a very cute and giggly "good morning" and she's in my bed, and Eric went to run an errand so I can't leave the room now because what if she decides she is going to roll over right now? Sigh

To start, when I was pregnant, Eric decided we should co-sleep, what? Most the world's cultures do it! This wasn't my plan as it wasn't what I was familiar with, plus I knew I'd be the one going back to work so I was all about the crib...In her own room... ASAP.

Then we agreed to using a co-sleeper bassinet or a pack'n'play in our room for an unagreed to length of time. I just asked that we revisit the topic occasionally as time passes.
This is all while she's still cooking.

We get home from the hospital after a very brief stay there considering I had a C-Section and she's sleeping in the co-sleeper just fine. She's tiny(5lbs), and sleepy so we are waking her to feed her around the clock.

Fast forward to a few weeks later and suddenly she won't sleep unless she's being held. I blamed the MIL visiting and holding her ALL DAY, but then decided it's just a phase. I started laying down and nursing her to sleep and we'd move her once she was deeply asleep, but this would only work for the first 4 hours. After that she seemed to want to nurse every hour so I started keeping her with me in bed. And now...against what I had planned...we are co-sleeping in our bed all the time.
And naps? In arms. Can't be put down.
I kind of love it though but it's getting to be exhausting.

We're at 3 months today, and a month ago her Dr said we might want to consider some sleep training by 4 months and I didn't even tell him about how she won't sleep out of arms at all, just that we don't put her down until she's totally asleep. He's a fan of putting them down drousy.

We were just doing what worked so we could all get some sleep. She just sleeps so soundly and hard when she's with me versus moving and kicking and waking herself up when she's alone. Plus, now I find I miss her and our time if she does successfully sleep in the bassinet.

So what to do?

We haven't been consistant with bedtime routines because she is generally so sleepy she fights us and going to sleep unless I lay down so no point in saying we are going to do a bath and story if she's just tired and crying for the boob. She doesn't seem to go to sleep soundly until about 10pm and doesn't really wake up until 10am, but he'll she takes her longest nap late in the afternoon so is she really ready for bed then?
So I guess we need to start everything earlier?
That means when I go back to work, by the time I get home she will be already starting her bedtime routine? THAT F-ing blows!!

I've been reading some methods and have asked Eric to read some too because he needs to be all in on this and not me just telling him how it's going down because that never works out well for anyone.

Why can't she just tell me what to do?
What did you all do with your kids?

Ahh. Some giggle smiley baby is staring up at me. I must go chew on her now.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone


J at said...

Yummy baby!

I guess I would look at Ferber's book, Maybe go to a bookstore and look at it and see if it deals with problems with babies as young as E. Seems to me that you will be best served by breaking her of the boob habit, which will be difficult for all of you. The other option is to keep doing what you're doing. There is nothing inherently WRONG with what you're doing, just that if it's not working for you, if you're frustrated with the situation, then you need to fix it.

I guess if it were me, I would take it in stages. First, work on the nap thing. If you can get her to go down for a nap without being held, and without nursing, you'll all be a lot better off. Again, NOT easy. I wish I could tell you that I remember how we dealt with this. Honestly, I don't think Maya was as dependent on being held, and would nap in her crib. But we usually rocked her to sleep first.

I wonder if it might help to give her a bottle at night rather than the boob. If she were more full, she might sleep longer. I don't know. Can you tell I don't know?

I guess I would go to the bookstore and look at some different advice, and see if anything speaks to you.

Regarding the work thing, I remember not wanting to go out with friends at all after work, because that was my only time with her. I'd see her for a bit in the morning, and then maybe 2 hours in the evening, and then she was down. Going from spending 24 hours a day with her, to 3 or 4 max, was emotionally HARD. I didn't like that one bit. But when she was younger, like 4 or 5 months old, when I went back to work in Philly, she didn't go to bed as early. It was when she got older and more likely to sleep through.

Sigh. Hard times. Happy times. Nibbly times. Wish I had a perfect answer for you.

Oh, I like T. Barry Brazelton as well. He might have some advice. But I suspect all of the advice will be similar. Either live with what you're doing, or suffer through changing it.

Issas Crazy World said...

Um, I am the last person to ask.

But friend? start now. Trust me on that.

Cherry said...

Shhh. She's sleeping in her bed at the moment.
We tried a few things tonight. We'll see how long it lasts and if it works again tomorrow.
I think the main thing tonight is that she napped well today(in the carrier but still, 2 solid naps) so she wasn't fighting the sleep so much.

BTW - CIO techniques do not sit well with me, but we'll see what works as we try different things.

J at said...

CIO didn't sit well with me either when I first heard about it, but when I read the book, I realized that's one part of it, and even that part is very different from what they showed on TV. E is way too young (IMO) for that. But they might have some suggestions to get her to nap without being held at least. I think maybe a 10th of the book is about that.

We did do a bit of CIO when she was about 10 or 11 months old. 10 minutes at first, then 20, if I remember correctly. I don't think she ever cried more than 20 minutes. She recovered in 2 nights, and we went from having to rock her to sleep or whatever to putting her in sleepy, singing to her, and leaving. Not that that's what's right for everyone. It was right for us, because we weren't sleeping, and I was working and needed my snooze.

~Donna~ said...

You need your sleep. Especially when you start back at work.

I had sleep issues with Spencer and I was a zombie for about 4 years. Brazelton had some good points in combination with other things I had heard that parents were trying and that worked for us. Don't ask what they were it was too long ago - now I can't get the kid out of bed on the weekends!

Another friend did the co-sleep thing and the kid slept with them until he was 9. Needless to say, he's an only child. Um, no thanks that's a bit much.

Bottom line, you need to find what works for you and that sweet little baby. You guys seem to be really good at doing the research and asking questions, so you'll find something soon. It'll take a lot of trial and error, but in the end, things will work out.

Whatever you settle on, stick to it - that is the hardest part of all!