Finally, here is the last part of my trilogy in Transferring your Sleeping Baby into the Crib.
You are now facing the crib.
This is the moment of truth, and as I have often faced it and failed, here are the final tricks that kept my little baby asleep.
Avoiding The Drop
Push your lower body against the side of the crib, then lean your entire upper body and lower your baby inside. The sensation of “dropping” out of your arms is a big culprit in waking him up, so keep your baby in your arms and against your chest for as long as you can before he gets to the mattress.
Keep your Arms in the Crib.
You made it, but don’t release your arms just yet! This is another crucial point and you will have to muster all your patience not to let go and peel out of his bedroom.
When you’ve laid him on the mattress, you will have one forearm under his head and your other hand over his legs and cradling his little bum. Stay in that position, leaning into the crib. I would count ten of his deep breaths before even thinking of letting him go.
First, wiggle out your arm from under his bum. Simply, pivot your hand under him until it’s out. Second, slide your newly-free hand under his head-blankie, to keep his head steady when you pull your forearm out from the other side.
Anytime he stirs, freeze. Leave your arms perfectly immobile. Try breathing softly close to him to reassures him of your continuing presence. Then count ten breaths again and resume your “extraction”.
The rest is just practice. If your baby wakes completely and cries, pick him up, cuddle him in your arms or in the rocking chair, or breastfeed him until he’s settled, and try again. At any time, if you and your baby have had enough, go back to co-sleeping and practice another night.
I know I must sound bonkers to describe every little step like this, but I’ve found that attention to every detail has brought me success. With time, I could be a lot more sloppy, because my baby got used to this routine.
In fact, one fine night, he decided to roll out of my arms and onto his tummy. My breath caught in my throat the first time, but he now falls straight to sleep with his bum in the air. So cute! At this point, I keep my hand on his upper back and again, reassure my presence until he’s off and dreaming.