Adventures in Sleep Training
I had just about waved the white flag when it came to getting my daughter to take naps and sleep better at night, but then I found the right fix to get her more zzzzz's.
During the first couple of months of life, my baby slept great. Well, for a newborn she slept great. She’d sleep a lot during the day, give us decent stretches of sleep at night, and I was on maternity leave so I could stay in my pajamas all day if need be, and catch a quick catnap if warranted. Soon enough, though, once she was sleeping better at night, she stopped napping. I’d maybe get her to take a nap without being held or worn in a sling once a week. If I was lucky. I tried all the get your baby to nap tricks, but nothing worked. Then about a week before I went back to work, my daughter stopped sleeping through the night. For the past month, she’s been getting up, on average, three times a night. Safe to say, I’m completely and utterly exhausted.
I’ve been reading about how to get your baby to sleep for months now, and I knew I was doing everything wrong. Everything! But as a busy working mom, I couldn’t fathom having to sleep train when I had to get up at 5:15 AM for work.
As a teacher, I knew that summer break is quickly approaching. I planned on trying to sleep train the baby then, but over Memorial Day weekend, I ended up with five days in a row off because we didn’t need to utilize snow days this winter. I decided to give it a shot and hope something could stick. My daughter will be 6 months old in a couple weeks, so I also felt it was a good time to work with her on this. A friend recommended The Sleepeasy Solution. So I quickly downloaded it on my Kindle and got to speed reading it.
I had to do some sleep training with my oldest when she was 8 months old, but pretty much she was a good sleeper. I don’t think I followed one specific plan with her, but rather I winged in from listening to anecdotal information from friends. I remembered I didn’t like what I did, but it got the job done. There was too much crying. So I was quickly drawn to The Sleepeasy Solution as it’s called the “least cry” method. And I appreciated that the creators of this method, Jennifer Waldburger and Jill Spivack, calls it “sleep learning” instead of “sleep training.” Training sounds hard and difficult and not pleasant. But as a teacher, I can totally get on board with sleep learning. Because really, I need to teach my baby how to sleep.
The first thing I had to do was break some habits. I had to stop letting the baby fall asleep while nursing. That’s what’s been causing her to wake up so much at night and refuse to nap unless being held. So now I do whatever I can to keep her awake while nursing right before sleep time. Whistling has been my go-to or blowing on her face. Or the best yet, is allowing big sister to stay in the room and talk to me.
This of course meant that I had to put my youngest daughter to bed awake. I was petrified. But I went for it last Saturday night. And you know what, it wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be using The Sleepeasy Solution. My daughter responded very well to it. After three different check-ins, she fell asleep. It only took 30 minutes!
YOU MIGHT BE INTERESTED IN