Friday, December 30, 2016

Sleep Training- Kid #2

If you've been following my blog you'll know that our 2nd kid Eloise has never been a good sleeper. And by that, I mean she has been an AWFUL sleeper for most of the 5 months of her life. It wasn't uncommon for her to be up 5-7x/night wanting comfort, nursing, & snuggling to get back to sleep.

I was exhausted. I'd get physically nauseous from the fatigue, and was having trouble putting sentences together.

And I DREADED doing any sleep training. This was a baby that by day was the happiest, most jolly little girl around. How could I subject her to sleep training? Would it even work with such an atrocious sleeper?

I spent 2 months doing a LOT of research in different Mama groups regarding sleep training. Specifically interested in stories pertaining to bad sleepers who- after sleep training- miraculously became GOOD sleepers. Those stories gave me hope.

And yet I delayed. Iyla was trained just shy 5 months, and for some reason as Eloise's 5 month marker went by I still didn't feel ready.

But would I ever feel ready?

Then last week I hit my limit. I had a cold that caused a lot of coughing throughout the night, so between being up for an hour at a time coughing and a baby up another 3-4x, I was hardly functioning.

Eloise also started mastering her tripod sit on December 27th, and I knew increased mobility wasn't far behind. Thus IT WAS TIME. She wasn't sick, wasn't teething, wasn't mobile, wasn't in a predictable sleep regression- truly the conditions were ideal. 

Enter Sleep Camp 2016 for Eloise.

I planned to again do the Weissbluth method of "rapid extinction" crying it out we used with great success when training Iyla. I was going to couple this with removing Eloise's swaddle and replacing it with a sleepsack, hoping that free hands would provide her another tool for self-soothing.

I was so nervous for our first night, and ironically developed food poisoning that same evening. Between running to the bathroom and watching the baby monitor, no sleep was to be had on my end. I kept thinking how timely this all was as there was NO WAY I could have been up all night nursing with food poisoning!

One of the big changes I made to Eloise's routine in the training was to give her a pumped bottle of milk BEFORE her bath, instead of right before bed. I'd read that this helps break the association of nursing to sleep, an important step in teaching babies to self-soothe at night. So the new routine would go bottle, bath, jammies & sleepsack, then to her room for 2 songs and a quick goodnight.

Here are my notes from night #1:

7:07pm put down to bed drowsy but awake. Cried for 4 minutes then raspberry blowing.
7:14-7:28 crying (14 minutes)- then asleep!
11:30-11:33 crying (3 minutes)
11:50 awoke complaining. I had vowed NOT to go to her before midnight for a feed (was planning on one feed for the night) so this was a dilemma- and I chose to wait and hope she self soothed back to sleep.
12:15- still crying/complaining so I went in to nurse. I think that was a MISTAKE in retrospect because to a baby, I just showed her that if she fussed for that amount of time I'd come back in. Which leads to the next 2 wake-ups:
1:10-1:50 crying (40 minutes). I fully think this was because she expected me to come back in, poor buddy.
2:40-3:10 crying (30 minutes). This is usually the time of night Eloise was the HARDEST. It wasn't uncommon for her to awake at 3, 4, 5, and 6am wanting comforting.
7:30- up for the day!

She was fussy and sleepy throughout the day, likely due to the fragmented sleep. She did take a 2.5 hour nap on top of me mid-day which helped a lot.

Now on to night #2! Here are my notes:

7:22pm put down to bed, some complaining.
7:34-7:37 crying (4 minutes) then asleep!


BC was on night duty and reported that at 6am he went in to make sure she was still breathing.

Holy s***. This is nothing short of a MIRACLE.

I'm now thinking that the one night nursing I'd been planning on isn't necessary and may actually be more confusing than anything else to her.... so the plan is to just drop that altogether and let this kid (hopefully) continue to sleep through the night.

Go Eloise! The future looks bright....

 The face of a kid after her first time sleeping through the night!

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