Monday, January 19, 2009

sleeping update

Since y'all are so curious about my daughter's new sleep habits - here's the scoop.

In the past 7 months or so, I've read probably a half dozen different baby-sleep books. I tried different things, sometimes combining techniques, sometimes throwing them out altogether because I knew it wouldn't work with my parenting style and personality (or my kid's personality).

A few months back, I read The SleepEasy Solution - and I liked it, but didn't really put it into practice fully. At that point, I had found that I could nurse Hazel to sleep for naps and bedtime, and nurse her back to sleep pretty quickly when she woke up - and fighting a sleep-training battle just didn't appeal. I was finally getting decent sleep (albeit interrupted sleep) and I was relatively happy.

Fast forward to a few weeks ago - an exhausted mama sees no end in sight to the nursing "solution" - and Hazel stopped letting herself be nursed to sleep at naptime (nights still worked fine). But a non-napping baby is NOT good company. And since she's usually my only company during the day, something had to give.

So last week (officially, January 14th) we committed ourselves to following the steps laid out in SleepEasy for two solid weeks - and we were gonna do it for real. No wimping out, no adjustments. And aside from one night when we were traveling home from visiting family and threw off the schedule completely - she's been doing GREAT. I'm putting her to bed awake, and she fusses for a little, then is typically asleep in less than five minutes. She has a nap schedule (which she pretty much never had before) and a nice, regular bedtime routine.

The one really funny thing - she now starts to cry when you read her GoodNight Moon because that's usually the last book before we put her to bed. She knows what's coming...

At any rate - we're happy to have a baby that's sleeping well, sleeping on her own - and last night was the second time in the past three nights that she slept 11 straight hours without getting me out of bed. What a blessing!!

6 thoughts:

Courtney said...

Is that different than Babywise? I've never needed any of them, but I've heard a lot about Babywise from people who have used it. I'm curious to know the difference.

Katie said...

Courtney -
It's VERY different from Babywise. Babywise advocates a fairly rigid schedule that includes dictating when baby eats and sleeps - and has you working on getting a baby to put him/herself to sleep from a very young age. My reading/research didn't leave me feeling comfortable with Babywise at all - SleepEasy really focuses more on just helping your child learn to sleep on their own - and I chose to wait to "teach" Hazel that because I believe that newborns should be able to nurse on demand...
With SleepEasy, the focus is more on creating an environment and ritual that lets kids know it's bedtime, and then teaching them gently to sleep on their own - We check on Hazel at set intervals if she's having a hard time falling asleep, and let her know that we're here, we love her and that it's ok to sleep on her own. There's also no dictated timetable for naps/bedtime - some suggestions, but it's up to me to read her cues and decide when to go for naps (bedtime is a lock around here - she's well trained on that one).
I hope that helps :)

Courtney said...

Thanks!

Hey, do you know if Ashleigh has stopped blogging? I can't seem to get to her blog any more.

Katie said...

I can't get to her blog either, but if she does post, it shows up in my Google Reader (but she hasn't posted since mid-December). No word on whether she's officially stopped or not - but I miss reading her stuff!!

Ashleigh (Heart and Home) said...

I came over to leave you comment agreeing with the wonders and miracle-making abilities of SleepEasy, and, lo and behold, my name is in your comments! :)

The blog is finally--FINALLY--fixed. And there's even a new post up! Ha. But my feed is still wonky, so you may not have seen it. I'm hoping to get everything fixed soon (with the help of a friend much more savvy than I am) and be able to update on what's really been going on the past six weeks. It'll be a doozy, let me just say that. Blah.

hugs, girlie. Missed you.

Kaycee said...

Thanks for the explanation! I am so glad it's working out for you and Hazel. :)