Operation: Get My Sanity Back

Tomorrow we start "the sleep easy solution!" with hopes of getting Tommy out of this I-can't-sleep-without-Mom-or-Dad funk. I'm sorry, but I can't sit in that dang chair every day for much longer. My iPhone keeps me entertained, but there's only so much Solitaire/Words with Friends/Bejeweled Blitz a woman can take.

Their website
This book was sent to me by my mother-in-law with hopes that it would be a miracle cure for our problems. Here's what we are hoping to change:

  1. Requiring a lap to fall asleep in (or, a nap in which to fall asleep, for those of you who prefer correct grammar)
  2. Wont let you put him in his crib awake (hence the lap)
  3. Crappy naps. Average nap lasts about 40 minutes or less (lately he's been waking minutes after I put him down, and refusing to go back to sleep- I don't know what to do!)
  4. Average total daily nap-time of 2 hours (should get 3-4)
  5. "Night noshing" (he only takes one bottle, but the goal here is to sleep through the whole night)
  6. Night sleep that lasts no more than 9 hours
  7. Early waking (we want him to sleep past 5:40!)

I've kind of been against sleep books. I don't really know why. Maybe because I know I'm an uber-perfectionist who will freak out if something doesn't go exactly the way the book says it should. Which we all know it probably wont.

[Remember the lady with magic photographic-hearing-memory who "knows what babies are saying" based on the sounds they make? Made the first couple months of Tommy's life super stressful for me. "That lady said this means he's hungry! Why wont he eat!? HE'S HUNGRY BUT HE WONT EAT! Gaaaahhhh..." Not everything is true for everyone, friends. Even if Oprah says it is.]

ANYway, this book claims to have a solution for all of these issues. I'm nervous to try it because it says bedtime fixes usually only take about 4 or 5 days, but nap fixes take longer, and those are my biggest problem. They also happen to occur while Nate's at school, so he wont be able to help keep me sane. We'll see what happens. 

Their method, in a nutshell:
  1. Do your normal bedtime routine, but don't let Baby fall asleep during
  2. Put Baby down still awake
  3. Say goodnight and walk away
  4. After Baby starts to cry* wait 5 minutes, then go check on him, shush him (for no more than 30 seconds, no physical contact)
  5. Repeat Step 3
  6. Wait 10 minutes, repeat check, walk away
  7. Wait 15 minutes, check, leave
  8. Continue to check on Baby at 15-minute intervals until he stops crying and falls asleep.
Supposedly the time it takes for him to fall asleep should shorten each night and by about day 4 or 5, he should put himself to sleep soon after you put him in the crib. We'll see what happens! And you do the same thing for naps, though it usually takes a week or longer to change (which is going to suck- letting my baby cry without someone home to comfort/calm me? For days in a row? Yikes.)

*I'm afraid Tommy wont start to cry. For a long time. Because that's what he's done other times that I've gotten fed up and walked away. He plays/talks/rolls around/tries to crawl in his crib for a lonnnng time, but doesn't go to sleep. So what's the problem, you ask? "If he's not fussing, who cares?" I care! Because he's tired! He's super sleep deprived and grouchy all day long! The child can't put himself to sleep even when he's exhausted, and somehow we have to fix that.

This is a not-quite-crying-it-out method, and I hope it works. Because I am at my wit's end.

I'm sure there are people reading this going, "what a crappy idea!" Well, if you have a miracle method, please, do tell. If this one doesn't work, I will be willing to try just about anything. And of course, I will keep you all updated.



MeganandClaudy said...

you can do it! And don't be upset if you don't fit the book perfectly. I read a ton and ended up doing a combo of several methods. I think just about any method will work, if you give it enough time. But, I wanted one that fit our personalities best. I think the best thing that worked for us was consistency. It will be hard for a few days, but keep thinking how good it will feel once he has it down. Good luck :)

April said...

Ditto. Different methods work for different families. Good luck, and here's hoping for sleep!! Eventually....!

nōms: said...

ok so i watched that know-what-your-baby-wants-by-listening-to-the-cry on oprah thing, and after listening to babies cry, i've determined it's dumb.
also, you can doooo it! i can't handle hearing babies cry, and they're not even MINE! stay strong! and if all else fails, i'll come be your nanny :) (i'm not even kidding, who needs college anyways?!)

Lauren said...

Good luck! Getting babies, toddlers, kids to have good sleep schedules is stressful. I am already worried how it will go with #2. I hope this works for you! If you're interested in other books, I read Sleeping Through the Night and it was helpful for us!

Elisabeth said...

We basically did that method for Miles, and it worked, but it was really hard to hear him cry. Gerrit wore earplugs, and I would do the dishes to have the water drown out some of the sound. Good luck!

Stephanie said...

We did that with Tobi and at first it was really hard but my desire to have him on a good sleeping schedule was greater. If you can be strong and make it through the first week or so, it is WAY worth it. We had Tobi sleeping twelve hours through the night and we laid him down awake, he put himself to sleep and he still does, it's the best thing we ever did!

Janelle said...

I want to know how you get rid of the middle of the night bottle. We're STILL dealing with that in this house!!! Good luck Bethy - you can do it and honestly, that's what we did with Caden and he finally hit the maturity level to handle it. Now we put him to bed awake for naps and bedtime and he soothes himself to sleep! It's soooo nice after months of the other way. Although sometimes his naps still stink (like yesterday)...most days it's pretty good! Good luck!