You know the scenario: someone asks if baby is sleeping through the night and you grimace and confess that they are still waking up and feeding/crying/playing. Cue sympathetic smile and reams of advice: let them cry, move them into their own room, feed them rice, don’t feed them, give them formula, give them different formula… until you run away or bean them with a large brick.
What to do? In most cases, lie. Oooh, she’s sleeping very well, thank you. We’re happy (of course we aren’t, but lie lie lie). He’ll sort it out eventually (highly unlikely IMO). Lie lie and lie again, then scarper.
You’ll have heard it already: better daytime sleep equals better nighttime sleep. Hah. Both are difficult for Loudboy, he hates going to sleep at any time of the day. Naps are much better now but has it affected night wakings? Oh no.
LB used to nap in his pram or pushchair because that was the only place he would go to sleep during the day. He had to be outside and on the move. Go into a shop, or stop pushing the pram and he would wake up. This is a great way to lose the baby weight. Unfortunately, you also lose any semblance of a life because you are out in the park walking for 2-3 hours a day.
After about 8 months, LB decided walks were far too interesting for sleep so we had another go and getting him in his cot. This time it worked – we have a short naptime routine (shut curtains, feed, book, cot) then jiggle the cot until he falls asleep. He will now sleep for about an hour twice a day and I can have a bath in peace (and do some housework, bah). Next step: lose the jiggling.
LB is nearly 9 months old and has never, ever slept through. Well, if you count 5 hours as sleeping through (see Pantley) he has managed it about 6 times. Usually he wakes up every couple of hours or less. We have had blessed periods where he has slept for 3 hours at a time but it’s been a while. Despite this, he is perfectly happy and healthy. It’s just that his parents are zombies much of the time.
Loudboy went to sleep very nicely. We now have a consistent routine that has taken months to sort out: bath, feed, massage, into cot, We’re Going On A Bear Hunt with silly voices then sleep. Most nights that means half an hour or more of patting, shushing, cuddling, feeding again, jiggling cot, thumping side of cot, more patting, all accompanied by yells and fists waving. But tonight he went to sleep like, well, a baby. Great. It may not last.
This is a blog for parents of non-sleeping babies: those who have never, ever slept through the night and those whose sleep went mysteriously haywire at 3, 4 or 5 months. If you are fed up with people asking if your baby is sleeping through, if you want to murder mothers who complain about being woken at at 6am after 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep and if you can’t see the keyboard because you are too knackered this is the blog for you.