Go to Sleep

photoI feel like I need to start off by saying that Leah’s an excellent sleeper and I know I shouldn’t complain…yet here I am, pretty much complaining anyways. Sleep has never been much of an issue for Miss Leah. When she was a newborn she would wake up the normal 2-4 hours to nurse and would then, for the most part, drift right back to sleep. She started sleeping through the night at an early age (even now it’s hard for me to remember when…maybe around 3-4 months??) and would go to bed around 9-9:30 pm and sleep until around 6 am. We slowly made her bed time earlier and earlier until we got where we are today, a bedtime between 7-7:30 pm. On the weekends, when we let her wake up on her own, she will consistently sleep until 8, sometimes, 9 am. We don’t have much of a “bedtime routine” besides bath, nursing, bed. Since she was a newborn I have put her to bed easily, just a hug and a kiss and then I lie her down in her crib still awake. We do no rocking, no bouncing, no patting her back, no snuggling until she falls asleep, nothing. All that to say: she’s easy. So much so that when I hear other mothers with young babies talk about how exhausted they are I find myself thinking, “Huh, I feel like I get plenty of sleep!” (Yes, I am well aware that this will come back and majorly bite me in the butt with baby #2).

So there we were, doing great and moving along nice and easy thinking, “This sleep stuff’s a breeze!!” And then we hit this month, where everything has come crashing down. After months of trying to stand, Leah has finally figured out how to pull herself up in her crib. And napping and bedtime will never be the same again. Now, instead of happily lying there, gazing sleepy eyed at her mobile until she peacefully drifts off to sleep, she stands up and joyfully tosses baby and binkies out onto the floor. The same baby and binkies she insists on having in her crib to fall asleep. So you can see how we have a problem here. Our nap time has begun an endless routine of walking into the room, picking up her baby and binkies, lying her back down, and praying she falls asleep this time. At night, she has started rattling the crib railings, crying and calling out to us for HOURS. Case in point, Monday night I put her to bed at 7:15 pm and we did the whole, go back in retrieve baby and bink, lie her back down, say good-night, andΒ  tip toe back out routine for almost 2 and a half hours. At one point, around 9 pm as I was sitting on the couch waiting for hubs to finish his turn so we could go back to watching Arrested Development I got this text: “I’m trapped-I closed the door too much and it’s going to make that loud creaking!” It did. And up she popped. This went on until around 9:30 pm until, as I sat trying to rock this baby to sleep-who is never rocked to sleep so instead she kept popping her head up to give me a sweet smile-I gave in and used the magical boobs to nurse her to sleep and then ever so carefully put her back in the crib.

So what do I do? Do I ignore her? (Which is just horrible on this mommy heart of mine. I pretty much suck at the whole cry it out method) Do I continue to go in and lie her back down? Do I say, “too bad for you now baby’s on the floor for good?” (kidding…kind of). I know we will eventually move on. On Monday night, aka “The Night From Hell,” hubs turned to me and said, “She’s in a phase.” And a phase is just that…a phase. A short period of time where this is the new reality until it sifts and changes once again. Hopefully into something better. But until then, to keep me from ripping my ever thinning hair out, any advice from ANYONE out there would be greatly appreciated!

14 thoughts on “Go to Sleep

  1. loveintheland says:

    Spoken from a mama whose son only recently learned to put himself to sleep, I would nurse her to sleep for this phase.

    If you don’t want to do that…Does she sleep on her tummy? We now put Dylan in the bed kinda awake and rub his back until he is asleep. If it doesn’t work after 10 minutes, we leave and it usually only takes minutes for him to go to bed. But yes I am all too familiar with the standing up and crying phase. So much so that up until last weekend we did naptime together in our bed because I couldn’t handle the crying!!!

    • Christina Lynne says:

      Thanks for the suggestions! Sometimes nursing her to sleep works, but other times it doesn’t (unless it’s later than 8 pm, then it pretty much always works). Leah sleeps all over the place, sometimes on her back and sometimes on her belly…pretty much however she decides to flip and roll. haha. We did try the back rubbing on Monday night (when my husband got stuck in the room due to her squeaky door) but I swear she is the lightest sleeper on the planet so she will pop back up at the smallest noise! I agree though, the crying is tough!!

  2. Jaclyn Lee says:

    I absolutely hate the “cry it out” method. I just think of all the times I’ve cried, truly cried, and at the end, you have a headache, you feel like you can barely breathe… and your phase looks a hot mess! I doubt Leah, nor Gunnar, care about how their face looks right now, but the headache and breathing are pretty big deals to everyone:) I vote for rocking her… She’ll pitch a fit for a few minutes, wriggling and trying to get free, but she’ll exhaust herself and rush off to sleep land !! Giving her the boob every night will become a routine you’re stuck with, the rocking is a routine you can love. A book before bed for cuddles and eventually to literally help her read πŸ™‚ Goodluck girlie, this mothering stuff is not for the weak…but it’s so much fun and they love with such big hearts!!

    • Christina Lynne says:

      I agree, I really don’t want the boob to become her human pacifier every night. We are trying the rocking, it’s just tough because since she isn’t normally rocked to sleep, she sees this time as a chance to smile at mommy and stick her fingers in my mouth and nose. hahaha. Maybe if we keep trying though she’ll understand that it’s time to SLEEP! Thanks for the good ideas!

  3. poolehousewife says:

    OMGosh we are soooo right there now! In fact, Julia is screaming and shaking the rails of her crib as we speak! She was sleeping through the night just fine, until Monday night, when she started the stand-up-and-yell routine. The absolute ONLY thing that got her to calm down was taking her into our bed with us! I let this go on for 3 nights because I gave her the benefit of the doubt (teething? sick?) and we were in a hotel last night. But tonight, Mama is laying down the law. Pray for us!!!! I have nooooo idea what to do!

  4. poolehousewife says:

    Also, (and I’m re-reading and re-reading your post while listening to my child sob in the room next door) I agree with you…this too shall pass. This has been my mantra the last 3 days!

    • Christina Lynne says:

      So happy to hear that we are not alone in this!! (Although sad to hear that poor Julia is having a tough time sleeping of course) Good job for laying down the law, I hope it paid off, let me know! I agree that we just have to see it as a phase and that all too soon they will be teenagers that we literally have to drag out of bed. haha. Until then it’s just so hard to stick with it and not pull them into bed with you to make baby happy!

  5. lexchantarelle says:

    Oh good! Something to look forward to!
    While I hadn’t thought about the headache after crying thing, I do believe in the cry it out method. It’s empowering to go through the process of crying, then calming yourself down and then coming a different solution.
    They are all viable options. Just gotta find what works for you guys I guess. Good luck!!

    • Christina Lynne says:

      I totally agree with you that babies need to learn how to self soothe, which is why I really TRY to let her cry and clam herself down at night. It’s just so hard when it goes on for hours at end! haha. But I’m working on it. We will be trying any and all methods and ideas until we find one that works for her consistently! Thanks for the advice! πŸ™‚

  6. zomccoy says:

    If she is a light sleeper, why not try transitioning to some soft music or white noise at bedtime? Maybe connect some soft toys with linking rings to the crib so that she has something to manipulate that won’t be lost with throwing. Maybe stay for a few minutes patting or rubbing her back (with her in the crib) and leave when she is in the sleepy/drowsy state. Best wishes for sleep for all of you!

    • Christina Lynne says:

      Music or a sound machine is a great idea, thank you!! She does have some soft toys that are connected to her crib, Mr. Moo (a crinkly cow) and a lullaby bear. These are wonderful at keeping her busy in the morning when she wakes up, but they don’t do much for her when she’s trying to fall asleep, unfortunately! Thanks for the great ideas!!! πŸ™‚

  7. lexchantarelle says:

    Why not tie some ribbon around the fool and binky she needs for sleep and tie them to the crib? Is that a hazard? What if the ribbon isn’t long enough to make it around her neck? A short ribbon? Or an elastic? Is there a way it can be done that is safe?

  8. Christina Lynne says:

    Haha! I did laugh when I read your first comment for a second I thought, “Is she talking about tying a ribbon to Leah??” until I realized that you meant “doll.” πŸ™‚ Too funny.

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