Breaking all the Rules.

I have a confession to make.

All these basic tips and posts of ways to get your baby to sleep better, are only best-case scenarios.

Softly Sleeping

Every book you’ll read is selling you a dream… Because the idea that there’s a magical way to make your baby sleep uninterrupted all night is a sham.

I’m not being pessimistic! I assure you, I’m perfectly happy now that I’ve accepted that my little guy wakes up at least 3 to 4 times a night. That’s just who he is: a very intense, spirited child.

Some will say that I’ve created my own little monster. Yes, I have. Don’t we all? And I LOVE my little monster.

So here’s a review of my baby’s sleep progress in one line: it’s better but not perfect. I doubt it ever will be.

A few basic tips like

Creating a quiet environment,

Good habits,

Being consistent and compassionate,

Establishing a nap schedule,

do help considerably. Without these rituals, it would be a million times worse.

And we’ve outgrown other steps, like the Transfer (part 1, 2, and 3). Those tips were useful when he was very little. Nowadays, I can pretty much roll him out of my arms and he’s used to flipping on his tummy to fall asleep.

But mostly, it’s a work in progress… Like staying asleep, or falling back to sleep without my help. Since I’m pretty categorical about not letting him cry it out, I’ll just have to patiently continue rocking or breastfeeding him back to sleep. I pass no judgement on others who have “ferberized”, as long as they don’t judge me for using the boob or for co-sleeping.

So, hang it all to heck! Here’s another basic tip: Just do the best you can. Do whatever works for your family. Politely nod your head to anyone who has advice about your sleep issues, ask them to pass the guacamole, and carry on.

And if you can’t stand it any longer, make a plan and change it.

I’ve made my bed (harty-har-har) and I’m fine sleeping in it.

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10 Comments

Filed under Basic Tips, Co-sleeping, My Personal Experience, Naps, Putting Baby to Sleep

10 responses to “Breaking all the Rules.

  1. What a great post. Thank you for keeping it real!

    • Thanks Sara! I was worried today that I was being a little harsh. I wouldn’t want to discourage anyone with baby sleep issues.
      Take care,
      Karla

  2. My experiences mirror yours in many ways! I read A LOT of baby sleep books while pregnant and over the last year since my son’s birth. As you say, there are a few good tips for making things a bit better, but all in all, I’ve never found a perfect solution. As yours does, my Jacob (just over 15 months old) wakes 3 or 4 times per night on average and won’t go back to sleep without some sort of cuddle or touch from us. And, I’m okay with that. He’s only little once. And, I’m sure we’ll miss such moments years from now–when our boys are sleeping in their own rooms and not needing the comfort of our arms to soothe them to slumber!

    • I’m so relieved to hear you have a similar experience! Part of me knows that I’ve done my best, but another part doubts it. And you’re right, I do like to snuggle with him. This shall pass and I will miss it.
      Thank you so much!
      Karla

  3. Turquoise

    Tu as tout compris…Bravo!!! Ils ne dormiront qu’à l’adolescence quand vraiment on aimerait mieux qu’ils se lèvent…xxx

  4. Jess

    Wonderful tips. It wasn’t until my son was almost two years old and still not sleeping through the night that I finally decided to give up trying it everyone else’s way. He nurses to sleep now, and he sleeps much better. When I forced him to go to sleep on his own, it was as though he kept waking up to be sure I was still there. He was jumpy and anxious. Now he’s more relaxed when I put him down.

    If I had to do it all over again, I would trust my instincts first before waiting until all else failed! It sounds like you’re doing a great job. 🙂

  5. We always start off co-sleeping with our new baby (I have two kids now). I used a co sleeper (ours was like a padded shallow box that went in the bed with us). This really helped us get better sleep. Eventually the baby moved to the crib in the same room, then the crib in another room. I would rock her and put her into the crib. I found eventually she’d just wake up EVERYTIME I put her down. By this point she was older and so I moved her into the big girl bed. I would lay my hand on her back, she’d fall asleep then I’d leave. Eventually THAT didn’t work anymore. Then I started laying next to her and had to escape when she fell asleep! I had a decent enough system eventually then I had my second baby and it was my hubby’s job to put the bigger sister to bed…..his method was “let her fall asleep on the couch”. Ugh…now that’s our horrid method. Which works. But isn’t ideal to me 😦

    • It’s tough, I know! You find a way that works, but it’s never really perfect. I just had to get over the fact that it wasn’t going to be perfect. As long as I accepted his needs, just did the best I could, then that was great. Kids need a lot of sleep, so it’s our lifelong job as parents to make sure they get enough. And that may mean breastfeeding, or co-sleeping, or laying a hand on their back… And just when you find what works, things change and we have to find other ways! But if it starts to affect you, if you feel that things can be better, make a plan. I highly recommend Elizabeth Pantley’s No-Cry Sleep Solution.

  6. Pingback: Co-sleeping: progressive regression | Sapphire and Rain

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