Sunday, July 21, 2013

Sleep Training, Night Two

Oh My Dear, this little one is having a rough time learning to fall asleep.  We decided to do Ferber sleep training to help get our little one to learn how to fall asleep.  It was at the point we were giving her the pacifier, swaddling her and rocking her for up to 45 minutes to get her to fall asleep.  Sometimes she'd even wake up after all that within 10 minutes, we were lucky if we got her to nap for 45 minutes.  We know the importance of good sleep and had some awful times with Nolan so we went for it.  Yes, it's a bit earlier than they recommend but we delayed with Nolan and he 'took' to it right away.

Sadly for this little dear it has not/is not so easy.  She is terribly dependent on the pacifier- her whole body can be rigid and you pop it into her mouth and she just collapses into calm lump of baby.  This is great for when she's screaming but we can't continue our nights of waking up to put the pacifier back into her mouth, especially since she's growing out of her bassinet and living on a different floor from us.  The 'easy' task of replacing the pacifier has just been made into a huge process, especially when it's every 20 minutes.  SO we decided to sleep train her.

It Sucks.  SUCKS.  When Emily was born she screamed and screamed for seemingly no reason so we created all sorts of habits not wanting to 'make' her cry for any reason we were making.  So if she started to cry at all for something that we could 'fix' we fixed it.  Seriously, the girl cried constantly for like the first 5 weeks of her life.  By then things started to get better with her screaming and she was such a happy baby that we prevented any situation which she cried at.  And then all the processes of preventing her from crying got worse and worse and worse.  

The hardest part and the deciding factor for me to sleep train Emily this early is Nolan.  Nolan is missing out on attention from us.  During the day when I'm not feeding Emily or trying to get her to fall asleep (which requires no interaction from Nolan b/c he's a terrible whisperer), the whole process takes 30-45 minutes.  And then she naps for 30-45 minutes?  It just doesn't seem fair to him.  And he doesn't either because he behaves in a way which indicates he thinks life is unfair.  He's been acting out, hitting us, banging on Emily's door when I'm trying to get her to sleep, skipping naps, telling me he's 'mad at me' and just being really defiant.  Or seeking attention.

AND HE SHOULD have our attention.  He absolutely should.  He is such a good boy, he dotes on Emily and he loves her so much- we are so thankful for that.  But days are so hard when he's in a bad mood or 'mad at me'.  He doesn't understand the reasons for whispering, not stomping in the kitchen, not running around the house and not yelling when she's sleeping.  He doesn't realize that no matter how mad he is, he can't bang on her door because that just restarts the 'cycle' and keeps me away from him for longer.  And I need to stop being mad at him and start enjoying him.  He is SUCH a sweetheart and frankly, I miss him so so much.  SO rather than stop breastfeeding which I thought about we realized Emily needs to improve the sleeping situation which takes for some hard measures.

So we started sleep training her.  Dave has done most of it because I'm a wimp and terrified she's too young to handle this and it's not going to 'work' or she's just not going to figure it out or whatever. I know it's for the best for her.  I know it is.  And it's the best for our family.  Sometimes we as parents need to do something we don't want to do for the better of our family, our children or the harmony which makes our family function.  We haven't had much harmony and we know it can be easier and a lot more fun.  So send in the moral support people.  This is an awful process.  Horrible.  But when you come out of the other side with a happy baby who can fall asleep on her own and stay asleep, everyone wins.  Everyone.

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