Trouble sleeping

It may be no trouble at all depending on what school of thought you consult, but I’m soooo ready to wean Zuzu of her night-time feeds. She was sleeping eight to ten hours January through March and then just stopped. Now, she spends anywhere from two to six hours a night in bed with us, largely because I fall back asleep after nursing her. I’m ready for her to sleep in her own bed for longer than four hours at a time.

By the time Katie hit a year old, she stopped wanting to sleep in bed with us. I don’t mind the occasional night-time snuggle and I’m fine with the idea that we’ll have a kiddo or two in bed with us regularly for a few years. But, we’ve hit a wall in terms of helping Zuzu learn to self-sooth and put herself to sleep. The reflux is much, much better- she really hasn’t thrown up after eating since we started solids at the end of April. But, she does throw up when she fusses or cries too long. So, we can’t just put her down at night unless we want to either clean up massive vomits (if only it were just spit up) or let her sleep in a mess. Neither one is acceptable.

I’m actually not that worn out from the night-time nursings, I’m just ready to have some space back at night. The child sleeps right next to me- never Eric- all night and I cannot move. I wish I were exagerrating. Plus, some nights she’ll try to latch on for hours at time, wriggling and reaching with her mouth. It’d be cute if it weren’t 1:30 in the morning. So, I’m reading up on the subject. I don’t think I’ll listen to Dr. Sears or “the Sleep Lady.” Our pediatrician has a great web site with a list of suggested reading. I ordered two books on their list, the Nursing Mom’s Companion, and Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child. We’ll see how it goes.

In the meantime, I’m trying to gradually ease Zuzu into sleeping on her own. Our first obstacle, however, was overcoming the weekends when Eric completely, entirely railroads my attempts to keep the girls on any sort of schedule. This may partially be my fault for not effectively communicating that we have a schedule during the week. If I leave the house, our normal lunch time and nap time go out the window, and I’ve tried to mirror the schedules that Katie’s day cares always had (lunch at 11, naptime by noon). I’m also trying to introduce a “lovey” (I hate that word), or, as we call it in my family, a woobie (maybe that word’s not much better). And, I’ve been bringing her into our bedroom with me at night and letting her fall asleep next to me in our bed. I think there’s something about our smell in the bed that calms her.

Of course, as I’m writing this, Zuzu is napping in her crib after fussing a little and falling asleep on her own. We’ve always thought she was one of those babies that have to cry a little before falling asleep. Her cries seem to crescendo right before she crashes.

A final note: the girls’ poops are becoming synchronized. Ha!


One thought on “Trouble sleeping

  1. Hi MaryAnn!

    We’re reading Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child. I haven’t made it through the entire book yet, but it has come highly recommended to me and helped me understand Colic and feel a lot more comfortable in helping Caskey through that time and a lot less guilty about continuing all the soothing techniques and sleep props we introduced in the very beginning (swaddling, rocking or swaying, white noise and paci) and continued during the time he had Colic and even now into the 4th month.

    We are planning to begin trying to help him learn to fall asleep on his own in this next month so I’ve been reading those sections although I don’t really mind rocking him to sleep except for the few nights a week he wakes up a couple of times through the night. It also (at least so far) presents different methods for different babies which I really like because I know no two babies are the same but feel like many methods are one size fits all.

    Anyway, I hope you find it helpful and let me know if you find some magic to share as we’ll be embarking on trying to help Caskey fall asleep on his own and sleep longer (I want to get from 10-12 hours) at night without waking on a regular basis. Take care!

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