Wednesday, July 28, 2010

the sleepeasy solution

So. I over share. I know I do - I look at what most of my other friends blog about or share on their Facebooks and it's not nearly as much as I do. I don't know why I feel the need to defend my oversharing but I do so here it goes (LOL). First - clearly, I'm a first time parent and I have no idea what I'm doing. I make mistakes, I get frustrated, my baby doesn't do things the way other babies do. Maybe, just maybe, by my over sharing, I can help some one else that doesn't over share that is struggling in a similar way. Second - most of our family isn't located close. My over sharing is a great way to help them be a part of Ben's life on a daily basis, even if it is from afar.

From previous blogs and Facebook rants, ya'll know that I'm struggling a bit with helping Ben to learn to put himself to sleep. I've tried so many methods, the Baby Whisperer, crying it out, etc. Nothing seemed to be working and we're all getting frustrated at our house. Don't get me wrong - Ben sleeps great. He's finally eliminated that middle of the night feeding and pretty much sleeps a solid 11 - 12 hours a night. He naps (for the most part) for at least an hour for every nap. The problem (which isn't really a problem) is that he doesn't know how to fall asleep on his own (unless it's in the car - he's a champ at car time naps). He must be held or nursed to sleep. On the one hand, I don't mind it. I like that bonding time with him. On the other hand, that's precious time out of my day for ME time (of which I rarely get - and I know - I'm not the only woman who hardly gets a moment to herself).

Anyway, I wanted to share and keep record of our new method, which we started tonight. I checked out "the sleepeasy solution: The Exhausted Parent's Guide to Getting Your Child to Sleep - from Birth to Age 5" by Jennifer Waldburger and Jill Spivack. I read through the book this afternoon and I agree with their methods like 100%. It's something I can see fitting with our family lifestyle and actually have a chance at working. It's not a "no cry" method but it isn't a "cry it out" method either. It's the perfect balance. I've established a bed time routine (which we already had, but I swapped it up a bit starting tonight). Our target bed time is 7:00 pm. This ensures that if Ben only needs to sleep 11 hours at night, I'm not up before 6:00 am (which sucks). Our routine is:
  1. Final nursing before bed
  2. Bath
  3. Lotion/diaper/jams
  4. Quiet music and fan on for white noise
  5. Non-stimulating play/bonding in his room
  6. A few minutes of cuddling/rocking
  7. In the crib, say good night, out the door
Tonight we did all those things and he was asleep before 7:05. Now, today is probably the exception to the rule. He napped like crap today and was way tired by bed time. As I was typing this up, he began crying but stopped before the 5 minute check time. Fingers crossed!

According to this book, night time putting to sleep should be mastered with in a few days. Apparently, naps are harder. I'm gonna stick with it and hopefully with 10-14 days we're on smooth sailing. We'll see!!!

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