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Thursday, May 30, 2013

A Good Sleeper

If there's one thing I'm obsessed with as a Mom it's sleeping.  Not for me, but for the kids.  I am a firm believer in the power of sleep for children.  There's tons of research stating children who don't get enough sleep have academic and/or behavioral problems.  Just because they are in bed for 10 hours doesn't mean they are actually sleeping soundly for 10 hours.  Naps.  Crucial.  Consistency in sleep habits - mandatory in this family.  I will admit it.  It's something I'm a huge stickler about.  For years our days lives revolved around the kids' sleep schedule.  Sometimes it's embarrassing that we need to leave places or show up late or even skip an event due to the sleep schedule.  

However, over the years, many people have said what 'good sleepers' we have.

It is/was no accident.  A lot of thought and planning in the early weeks/months/years went into making our kids such 'good sleepers.'  

A few weeks ago I came across an blog about this lady's thoughts behind sleep training.  It got me thinking....I need to get going on Brecken.  Those first six weeks are I Just Want to Live Through This mode.  But then it's Holy Crap I Can't Rock This Kid to Sleep Every Single Time He Needs to Sleep Again for the Rest of His Life.  Sounds dramatic.  I agree.  But everything is dramatic when you want a baby to go to sleep and it won't.  So I went to the library.  I got four books about getting kids to be good sleepers.  I began reading Sleeping Through the Night.  I already knew and agreed with everything I was reading.  Put the baby down drowsy but now sleeping.  Sooooo easier said than done!  However, I realized I do, do that in the middle of the night because I pump after I nurse and he fusses for a bit but by the time I'm done pumping he's sleeping again.  The difference I realized between my thoughts and beliefs on the subject is: do it all much much earlier.  The book doesn't recommend a bassinet.  The book also isn't getting up at night to hand my baby to me at 1:30am.  However, when I first started reading the book it stressed the importance of not having the baby sleep in the same room as the parents because babies are such noisy sleepers.  I couldn't agree more and we moved the bassinet to Brecken's room, just inside the door.  It helped me sleep deeper while the baby was sleeping.  Yesterday I read that a baby should sleep in the crib from day 1 BUT if it was in a bassinet it needs to be in the crib by week 12 or the bassinet will become more of a habit.  

That gives me a whopping two weeks for the transition.  As he was drowsy but awake in my arms tonight I was telling Mark how I've been watching his sleep cues and how he had a perfect day because I'm focusing on reading him and giving him the sleep he needs before he's overtired (which can happen in less than five minutes.  It's a small small window when they're this little.).  He had a perfect day today.  Another thing the book said, which I couldn't agree with more is, a well-rested child sleeps well.  An over tired child has a hard time sleeping.  While I was talking to Mark about all this I confessed he should be sleeping in his crib.  "Well, go put him there then," he said.  Just like that.  

He's not ready I wanted to say.  But I knew it's me who's not ready to put him in his huge crib.  We went in and Mark removed the few stuffed animals he's received and stood there staring at me waiting for me to put Brecken in it.  I shed a few tears before gently lying him down.  His arms flew straight out and he woke up.  "I knew it!  Now I really messed up his schedule!"  I said.  "Just leave him alone and he'll go to sleep," Mark responded without even looking away from the TWINS again.  

Sure as shit, the kid went right to sleep.  He's been sleeping for an hour and a half so far.  He usually wakes around 1:30 to eat.  I'm so curious to see how long he'll sleep in the crib tonight.  

Either way I can say, confidently, we're on track to raising another good sleeper:-)  

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