Sleep: And Now For Something Completely Different.

We’re re-evaluating. Yeah. That’s the word. Certainly not giving up completely. Nope.

It’s funny. I was glancing through old blog posts (’cause baby pics) and saw my own comment about oh no, baby was only sleeping three hours. Then only two. And now I laugh. And laugh. And sob.

Saturday night was pretty rough. 45min here. 30min there. Then the baby decided 5.30am was the time to get up and no amount of cuddling, feeding, sshing could get her back to sleep for more than a minute or two. Sunday was awful. I was a wreck. I drank an entire pot of coffee and didn’t even feel it. I dreaded Sunday night, didn’t want to go to sleep because I’d gotten to the what’s-the-point stage, but I did, and things were a little better. Baby slept 2 hours here and 2 hours there and I didn’t sleep for the full amount of either of those chunks, but apparently two 90min chunks is enough to get by.

Could we have fucked things up by trying to sleep train and then stopping? I don’t know. The problem with sleep training is that you need to be relatively not exhausted to do it properly, but if you need to sleep train then you’re probably already exhausted, and that first night is just going to exhaust you further. Like I said, I’m barely functioning on good days, so…

So we’re not going to continue, not until I can stop freaking out/crying/shutting down at the littlest thing. Instead, we’re going to focus on extending the times between feeds, which is slightly easier. It means we can still ssh and pat and give her the pacifier and hold her to help her fall and stay asleep, just stick to no boob until a certain hour. Easier to remember in the middle of the night when you don’t know what day or year it is. Easier, too, to calm a crying baby than lie there, listening to her cry and cry and cry.

Last night, baby went four hours, twice(!), between feeds. This is the longest she’s done since before the sleep regression. This is great, now we just have to stick with it. For a few nights, now, we’ve been sticking with no less than three hours, except very close to morning, when the last feed might be too disruptive if we pushed it off too long.

I’m giving it three more weeks. In three weeks, baby will be six months. In three weeks, the nights will be less cold and therefore the office – aka her room – will be less cold. In three weeks, she has another doctor appointment and maybe we can make 100% sure nothing else is going on. In three weeks, I’ll either be a broken shell of a human being or this gentler method will have absolutely revolutionized everything – no inbetween.

In three weeks, I should be 100% on board with the sleep training thing instead of the 90% I was. Apparently 90% isn’t good enough. Apparently that 10% of doubt festers and eats at your mind when it’s 9.30pm and the baby’s been crying off and on for 40min. Who knew.

(You did, probably. We were warned, after all.)

(Nevertheless, we persisted)

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5 Comments

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5 responses to “Sleep: And Now For Something Completely Different.

  1. shawnsorcade

    Five and six months were the absolute worst sleep for Abe. Literally up every fifteen minutes for a soother popped back in. I was at my breaking point even with us switching off nights. I wanted to sleep train night wean and take away his soother. Cade wanted to give him time. We were too tired to decide what to do so we just kept on and then right around 6.5-7 months he turned a corner. Put his own soother back in and only one or two wake ups. I don’t have any advice. I just want to say I feel for you. There’s nothing worse than sleep deprivation

  2. Stop feeling bad about this! You’re a great mom. You just have to do whatever is best for your family in any particular moment. And whatever is best for your family may change from week to week (or day to day!) and that’s ok. Whatever makes life a little easier is the right choice. 99.9% of parents will understand this. And if they don’t? Fuck ’em.

  3. There are times when sleep training works and times when it doesn’t, and I suspect it has much more to do with the baby than with the parents. You’re doing what you have to do to stay sane and keep yourself and your kid safe. That’s not a failure. That’s a step in the right direction.

  4. Amy

    We’ve changed our sleep training plan more times than I can count. My belief is that different babies will respond to different sleep training methods, and different parents are better suited for different methods. I just didn’t have it in me (exhaustion-wise) to be perfectly 100% consistent with strict no-cry sleep solution training, so now we are using flexible gentle approach and any sleep consultant would surely criticize it for lack of consistency. But we do the best we can and that’s all we can do. In the end our babies will be kids and everyone will be sleeping like normal human beings again. We just hope we survive that long 😂

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