The No-Sleep Sleep Solution

If I've learned one thing in my short tenure as a parent, it's that you cannot plan anything when it comes to your child. It goes back even before the birth, when you ask been there-done that friends whether you really should have a birth plan and they laugh at you. Birth plan? they cackle. The birth plan is you go to the hospital and get that baby out of you by any means possible.

I thought I'd avoid dressing her in pink.

I thought we'd spend hours together listening to classical music.

I thought I'd read to her every single night. Right after the bath I gave her every single night.

I thought we'd have family dinner time, with the TV off.

I thought the TV would be off a lot, in fact.

I thought even if we did watch TV with her, it would never ever be something like Deadwood. ("I don't want her first word to be cocksucker," I told Nate last night. "If her first word is cocksucker, I will laugh so hard," Nate said.)

I thought I'd never feed her something that had fallen on the floor. Under the couch. In the dog hair.

I thought she'd never eat a french fry, at least until she was twelve.

The top-secret unauthorized french fry photos of '06.


I also thought the sleeping arrangements would be a bit different. "We're not going to co-sleep," I distinctly remember telling Nate one night as I rested my third trimester cankles on his lap. "It's not good for our relationship."

"Sure," he said. "Makes sense to me."

Well once again I was wrong, but not in the way you'd think. The fact is, we have not co-slept. What we have been doing, rather, for the last 11 months and 7 days is best described as co-not sleeping.

Three hours straight is deemed a victory. Four hours straight is a miracle. But it's better than zero hours straight which is what we were getting when we tried to put her to bed anywhere but in between us.

There's something comforting about feeling her skin next to ours, hearing her gentle breaths, waking up to her grabbing my nose and giggling. But the three feedings a night is starting to get to me. Also, Thalia's nasty new habit of sleeping horizontally which forces us to the edges of of our inadequate queen-size bed while one lucky winner gets kicked in the face all night as a special bonus treat. It was those mornings when my lips still felt raw from a 2 am roundhouse to the mouth that I reminded Nate about the beauuuuuuutiful like-new crib mere inches away from our bedroom door.


There was always a business trip coming up, a visit to grandma's, a something-or-other that made him insist, "this is a bad week. Maybe next week. Yeah, next week."

Maybe next week turned into maybe next month, and maybe next month brought us to where we are today: With a co-not sleeping almost year-old baby who still wakes up every three hours; and her very very exhausted, co-not sleeping working mommy.

I'm not ashamed to say I'm tired. I'm done. It's been fun and thanks for all the memories, but I'm ready to send you into the scary crib of doom which you will eventually learn to love, dammit.

All of which would be fine and dandy except for one major obstacle.

I thought he would be the dad who could plop her in the crib and let her cry. Tough Love Nate, I'd call him. And I thought I would be the mom who'd curl up into a ball on the floor outside her bedroom door, sobbing along with her while Nate pats my back and reminds me how this sleep-training business is all for the best. But I thought wrong. Again.

"One year," he said last night. "I promise. It's a nice round number and next month we'll do it. Really."



So now I'm planning on it.

Will I ever learn?


Blogger scarbie doll said...

I totally get this. I put so much pressure on myself that first year, but then found I was a better mommy once I let go a bit. I think it was the day I saw my friend feeding her son a Mini-go. He was lapping it up while my son was making faces at organic broccoli puree. Small, portable, soft cheese suddenly seemed brilliant, but I had never seen it come in organic (my obsession at the time). I was like, hmm... maybe I could feed my son that? Maybe he'll still turn out okay.

The sleep training thing worked for a while and then didn't work. It was only once he was off the boob that (my) Nate began sleeping through the night. You just do what you can to get by. Hang in there.

6/12/06, 11:43 PM  
Blogger Jill said...

I have 8 month old and a husband in bed next to me as I type. The four-year old is sure to join us in about four hours.

Let's just say that we have bedrails on our grown-up bed and I am eternally sorry that we didn't buy king size.

6/12/06, 11:51 PM  
Blogger toyfoto said...

Annabel was 11+ months when Jed finally convinced me to put her in her own crib, in her own room. Until then she woke up every two hours. (I wish I were kidding) But after a week (more like five days), she was sleeping like a teenager.

6/13/06, 12:24 AM  
Blogger Mel said...

I made the terrible sentimental error of letting Really Rosie sleep with us until she was almost two... the screams of her echo in my head yet from when we finally wised up and stuck her in that crib.
But again, all kids are different, and Thalia may be that awesome kid that transitions with no problem. You just never can tell.

6/13/06, 12:36 AM  
Blogger j.sterling said...

good luck! every transition is hard, but you'll get through it. i mean, in reality- she has to leave the bed sometime right?1 lol

6/13/06, 12:43 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Co-sleeping, Co-notsleeping, in her own bed... you will all three survive whatever transitions you make. I'm just glad you're writing about it because I'm enjoying reading about it. Well-written, really wonderful post. Thanks Mom!

6/13/06, 1:16 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It sure is humbling to see all our standards fly out the window in exchange for moments of peace and humor at the expense of the kids. We need some reprieve, don't we?!

After 16 months with our first one there is no great sleeping success story despite the half-hearted efforts we've made and then tossed aside in order to grab some Z's for ourselves.

One is a nice clean number. Perhaps she'll be ready. Perhaps you'll have grown tired enough to be ready too. Best of luck.

6/13/06, 1:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It took us nine months to put Girlie in her crib still awake to put herself to sleep. I cried, drank wine, cursed, and cried some more as she wailed in her room. But within two nights, she could put herself to sleep and quite amazingly slept all night. ALL NIGHT. I repeat, ALL NIGHT. I realized then that we'd not only done ourselves a favor, we'd done a favor for her too. At seven, she is still one of the best sleepers I know.

6/13/06, 1:29 AM  
Blogger What's so funny? said...

"Thalia's nasty new habit of sleeping horizontally which forces us to the edges of of our inadequate queen-size bed while one lucky winner gets kicked in the face all night as a special bonus treat."

That killed me. In fact the WHOLE post rings true for me. And I'm so glad I read this tonight because I thought I was the ONLY one who couldn't get through it. I waited so long by the way my daugther was in a BED by the time she "moved out". Never slept in her crib, no-sir-ee. But you know what? Even though it had it's ups and downs, it was a wonderful bonding experience. Think of it this way, we wait 9 months to bring them into the world. Why push them away so soon? Sleep on the end table with numb lips. At least you're next to your baby!


6/13/06, 1:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's so easy to be idealistic before you have children. Good luck with breaking that habit, I've had to do it, and it's tough. Is that why you always post at midnight? By the way, thank you for posting so late. It's midnight here, I'm at work, and it's such a treat to read a new post from you. You're fabulous.

6/13/06, 3:56 AM  
Blogger carrie said...

I wish you luck next month, luck and lots of much-needed sleep!

You never know, when I weaned our daughter I thought it would be hell on earth since she never would take a bottle (for a whole year, no bottle). But she proved me wrong, could care less and became a big girl with a sippy cup just like that!

Restful nights await you...

6/13/06, 4:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Suggestion: The complete sleep guide by Gina Ford though my kid isn't past four months yet..the book deals with toddlers. I love sleep and really miss that.

6/13/06, 4:59 AM  
Blogger Arwen said...

Maybe you didn't think you feed her french fries until she is 12 but when a baby is that cute holding a french fry, how can you not feed them to her?
We compromised with Noodle, she was allowed in bed with us once the sun came up, it was a tough transition but we all got to sleep until 9 that way.

6/13/06, 6:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh, the old "List Of Things I Swore I'd Never Do" is a long and ever expanding entity. I'm quite sure I won't be adding:

•Let her leave the house looking like a hooker at age 10.

•Let her go on an unchaperoned date at 14.

•Let her operate a motor vehicle.

But, you NEVER know...

6/13/06, 7:18 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ah, me and you both- stuck in a sleepless not co-sleeping situation.

I know I NEED to get him to sleep in the crib. I NEED to get sleep. I am not functioning properly. I could be a happier, healthier person if I had sleep. My co-not-sleeping isn't working anymore for me either. George is 11 months old.

About the french fries. With my first son I was so careful- monitering every food he ate, introducing one food at a time, reading all the books etc. With George, I think he had his first french fry at 6 months old.

I blame it on the fact that he never lets me sleep.

6/13/06, 7:19 AM  
Blogger Amy said...

I can lay my 10 month old daughter in her crib for naps and she falls asleep with hardly a peep. I put here in there at bedtime and she cries for an hour. I can't for the life of me figure it the difference, and I've never even co-slept!

6/13/06, 7:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please. We eat so many damn ff and hot dogs (um organic of course) that I'm embarrassed to write it. And yesterday, we ate McDonalds (post orthopedist celebration - for me, mostly).

Anyhoo, last night, she was out of our bed - however, so was I, sleeping in her room. But, that's fine - cuz she was in HER bed.

She's a mover and a shaker in our bed and that translates to no sleep for anyone - not even her really.

I feel your pain. Co-not-sleeping sucks.

6/13/06, 8:48 AM  
Blogger S.T. said...

Ha! I know what you mean about all the grand plans before the baby's arrival: no fast food, no TV, blah, blah, blah. Goes out the window pretty fast, huh?

If it's any consolation (and I'm sure it isn't) we are STILL co-sleeping with our almost six-year- old! She did go through a phase of sleeping by herself in her own crib/room from ages 1-3, but she's been in our bed at night for the last three years. Most of the time I don't mind because I know all too soon she won't want to have anything to do with us, so we're enjoying the closeness with her for now.

Good luck getting your little one in her crib!

6/13/06, 10:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dude! Thalia is absolutely adorable. That's the cutest french fry photo I've ever seen. I love it!

Don't be too afraid of the transition. Some kids handle it really well. Our daughter cried for 30 minutes the first night, 10 minutes the next night, and then not at all. Greatest thing ever.

6/13/06, 10:10 AM  
Blogger Bea said...

Funny, how our parenting style is never predictable based on personality! Like you, I thought I'd be the soft-squashy kind of parent and that my best friend (who became a mom at the same time as I did) would be the hard-ass. Wrong! She fed on demand and never sleep-trained, while I nursed every three hours and slowly went mad until the day I made my deal with Dr. Ferber.

Good luck with your transition to the crib, whenever you and Nate decide that it's the time.

6/13/06, 10:16 AM  
Blogger Kristi said...

Oy. It's something you just have to do, all the while having a stronger will than the child in question. You can do it!

6/13/06, 10:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not only is Thalia eating a french fry, but she is wearing pink! Cuteness beyond words!

I'm one of those brats who had babies and toddlers that preferred to sleep in their own beds (especially CJ). But lest you think that I've gotten off scot-free, Tacy now joins us almost every single night after she wakes up from dreaming about "Monsters, ghosts, T-rex, and witches - all at once, Mommy! All at once!"

And I love the realistic birth plan you laid out. Damn straight.

6/13/06, 11:01 AM  
Blogger Redneck Mommy said...

This whole post was like a walk down memory lane that I tried very hard to forget...


The good news is one day she will sleep in her own crib.

But by then, you probably will have another kiddy hogging your covers and delivering surprisingly accurate round houses to the lips.

Good luck!

6/13/06, 11:18 AM  
Blogger Denver Dad said...

We had our lists too. No toys that entertain, rather than allow a child to entertain himself (those terrible electronic, giggling, talking toys). No TV. No Miller Lite in the sippy cup before bathtime. (Okay, we've barely managed to stick to that one) It's amazing how quickly parenting wears you down.

Sleep has been our biggest hurdle, and like a lot of the people who have already posted, Dr. Faeber became our hero pretty quickly (after 10 months of co-sleeping). Is it hard? Yes, it's really hard. But, it doesn't take long before they figure out how to sleep on their own. Our son still cries when we put him to bed, but its usually for just a few seconds, and then he settles down.

Yeah, its hard, but good luck! You can do it! Just make sure you're ready. If you're ready, your baby will be.

6/13/06, 11:31 AM  
Blogger Robin said...

You'll work it out. Just put the child's needs ahead of your own wants, and it will all happen fine and naturally with no fuss or stress.

(But hey, look at me... when I woke up this morning I discovered my 5-year-old and one of my 9-year-olds in with us. Just part of the deal.)

6/13/06, 11:39 AM  
Blogger Nichole said...

We put off the transition from co-not-sleeping to crib for about 6 months. My husband deploys for one month periods so I was waiting to do it when he was going to actually be home!

About one week before one of those long deployments I realized that if I didn't get E in her crib then I never would get any sleep, so we did it...and it WORKED. We half-ferbered her.

Oh, and another tip if you use the snuggle me sleeper thingy...at first, put her in her crib with the sleeper! Tricking the baby is not against the rules. It's almost necessary. Now E loves her crib and her bedroom!

(I still miss sleeping with E on my chest...sigh)

6/13/06, 11:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hopping on soapbox:
Crying it out is hard on moms, and kids, because it's wrong. It's just wrong. There is a reason your gut is ripping at your heart telling you to go get your kid. Have you read "Protecting the Gift" by Gavin DeBecker? Great tome on how we've been conditioned by our overly-convenient society to ignore or dismiss our instincts. They were given to us for a reason. To make us good moms.

S.B. rant numero dos: I hate the idea that somehow our babies must fit into our lives. They didn't ask to be here, and it's not their job to conform to what WE want. Not to be a martyr, of course, but we are obligated to consider them much more than they are obligate to consider us. Not you, but it always cracks me up when I hear people whinging about sleep. WTF did you think when you had kids? I mean, honestly? We never get sleep, we get our bodies totally effed up, that's what kids DO. If you were expecting something else, you were delussional. :P (Again, not you...it just made me think about that).

But anyways........my son, who is newly 2, JUST FINALLY moved into his own bed in his own room. But it took a lot of baby steps to get there. But it was worth it. We look back at that first year and laugh....kinda...ruefully. But we still laugh. At the screaming fits at 1am that lasted for four hours and how our version of "sleeping in" is 6:30. Anywho, my suggestion is to move a little at a time, and quite honestly, we made the most progress when we waiting till he could understand and communicate w/ us better.

Yeah, I totally SWORE my kids would never TOUCH McDonalds. Granted, we hardly do ever eat it because I can't eat anything there.....but still. K went for her birthday. Gag me. But I let her. Oh well. Shoot me.

6/13/06, 12:02 PM  
Blogger Cristina said...

Maybe there's another solution to this. You go sleep on the couch. Nate and Thalia sleep in the bed together. I know the couch isn't the best, but perhaps you'd get a better night's sleep. She can cry it out with Nate in the bedroom. :)

Here's hoping for much uninterrupted sleep in your future.

6/13/06, 12:27 PM  
Blogger Bobita said...

I call it Karmic Parenting! I curse myself for ever uttering the words..."when I'm a parent I will never do that!" Ha!

The list of things I said I would never do? It is endless. And what is worse? Karma has bitch-slapped me into submission because I do all the things that I said I would NEVER DO...AND THEN SOME! And not only that...Karma provided me the opportunity to eat my words three times over! Yes, that's right. Three children with whom I have co-not-slept. Three children who visit Nanny Television more often than I would like to admit. Three children who eat sweetened cereal.

Karma, to you I raise the middle finger.

6/13/06, 1:06 PM  
Blogger Sandra said...

We co-not-slept with our son too. I struggled what to label it and you just nailed it. I could have written every word you said here (only not as well of course). My son is 5 and he's been legitimately sleeping on his own since about 12 months. That nice round number.

But even now, when his dad is away on business he sleeps with me and I remember that sweetness of he as a baby next to me ... until I get kicked in the head in the middle of the nigt.

6/13/06, 1:23 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

C.I.O. is not wrong.
Co-Sleeping is not wrong.
Attachment Parenting is not wrong.
Sears is not wrong.
Ferber is not wrong.
You are not wrong.
I am not wrong.
Touting ideology as "scientific fact" is wrong...

(rereading this makes me sound like some hippy-dippy moron, but you get my drift...)

You guys will work it out. C.I.O. (which was my last resort after co-not-sleeping) transformed my son into engaged, happy, sleeping little individual. It was good for him AND me. so far, no signs of long lasting brain or psychological damage. unless you count fascination with own poo and fondness of saying "cocksucker."

You'll do what's right for you all in the end:)

6/13/06, 1:40 PM  
Blogger Christina said...

We co-not-slept for the first 4 months, and then we transitioned Cordy into a crib. I think you just have to bite the bullet and do it if you really think it's for the best. In our case, we all slept better - she actually started sleeping 4-5 hours at a time regularly in her crib.

And yeah, we can never plan how it's going to turn out. We expected to co-sleep with Cordy until she was at least one, but she had other ideas.

6/13/06, 2:31 PM  
Blogger Mama Kelly said...

i just wanted to say that the unbridled joy on her face as she chomps on that evil forbidden french fry is just precious

6/13/06, 2:41 PM  
Blogger Marie said...

Awwww! Daddy Nate... It's ok to cut the cord!

The crib is a beautiful place! Easy for me to say... We never co-not-slept. But we DO eat Cheerios off the floor all the time! And watch PBS daily... and... and... yeah we weren't going to do that either. GOOD LUCK!

6/13/06, 3:28 PM  
Blogger Melissa said...

I can't help, since mine have slept in the crib since day one. But I really love the french Fry pictures. My kids were never going to have candy or suck on pacifiers or drag around a blankie at 2 or watch movies. No way, no how. But then reality sets in. And really, watching Beauty and the Beast with your M&M's and bubby and blankie won't kill anyone right? Right?

6/13/06, 4:03 PM  
Blogger OhTheJoys said...

In the realm of "plans" - I planned to keep the high chair clean. HA!

6/13/06, 4:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A night weaning is hard but not impossible. I have been a La Leche League Leader for 11 years. (Yes, one of the wacko's!) Yours is a common issue for Moms.

Have you tried switching up the sleeping order? Put your mattress on the floor, put the crib mattress next to it but on your husbands side. Then Thalia goes to sleep next to Daddy. He may be able to sooth her back to sleep with a sip of water or a snuggle. When they are right next to the "girls" with instant access it is hard to say "no". Never mind the fact that we are half asleep and just want the child to go back to sleep as quickly as possible.

Good luck! One thing I have learned from my 4 is that they all do eventually sleep through the night. But sooner is sooo much better then later.

6/13/06, 4:43 PM  
Blogger GIRL'S GONE CHILD said...

Oy. Arch is back in bed with us 5 out of 7 nights these days. Sigh...


Good luck with the sleeping. Oy.

6/13/06, 5:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oooh. Tough call to make. CIO is not easy, but not sleeping is worse. You could always try putting Thalia in her own bed. Maybe she'll drift off and sleep blissfully for 12 hours? Huh? Yea? It could happen...

6/13/06, 5:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

mmm - a full nights sleep. Just as I think I am getting them on a regular basis she throws me a curve ball. YOur post almost discribes my life - last night this mama really had a go after 4 hours of trying to get her to sleep in her own da*£ bed.

Grumpy today!

6/13/06, 6:17 PM  
Blogger Mom101 said...

Oh all the advice is so so SO good! I appreciate it to no end. And the poor baby stuff...that's not bad either. You all make my day, pretty much every day. For this I thank you.

WordGirl: funny enough, I almost named the post "man plans" based on that very proverb.

SmarmyMama: I'm just not up for a CIO debate right now. I'm too tired from the lack of sleep for 11 months. I will say however, that before it had a fancy acronym and a bunch of books about it, it was just called parenting and there was no debate about it.

6/13/06, 7:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm not saying a word about the whole sleep thing, I think GingaJoy said it best already.

I just want to say that Thalia is ADORABLE!!

6/13/06, 8:09 PM  
Blogger Her Bad Mother said...

Plans are fun. You can look back at them and laugh. We varied between co-not-sleeping (which we had sworno never do) and bassinet-by-side-of-bed-not-sleeping for four months. Then, WonderBaby outgrew her bassinet and her swaddle and there were about 100 groin kicks and purple nurples too many and she moved to her crib. As did we - our mattress relocated to nursery floor - for a few days while *we* transitioned. Don't ask. And then she slept. Beautifully. For a few weeks. Then she stopped. Then she slept again. And stopped again. And so on.

There's no magic bullet. There may be the odd freak baby out there who sleeps brilliantly, consistently, but IMHO most babies have their good stretches and bad stretches, just like anyone else, no matter what you do. So just do what works for you, when it works for you.

(And? Just because I can't help myself - CIO/parenting looks different for every baby. WonderBaby has always needed to fuss down a bit, but otherwise she goes down like a dream (staying down is another story). If she fusses too much, to the point of really crying, we know that something is off - usually that she's still hungry or that we've put her down before she's ready. So we get her up for another 15 minutes - or change diaper, or nurse her more - and try again and she goes down pretty quietly, with some mumbling and maybe a few half-hearted shouts. She almost never cries while going down unless somethign is bugging her, so if we let her cry, she'll just escalate into a fit. Real CIO just isn't the right strategy for her.

Moxie did a good post about figuring out whether your baby will respond to CIO recently. Worth a look.)

Whoa. Prattling on. Sorry.

In sleepless solidarity...

6/13/06, 8:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hear ya...This was and still is the most challenging thing about parenting, I think. It doesn't end, really, it just changes. In the beginning it was getting them to sleep "all night" without nursing. Two at a time was a bit harder than I would've hoped but I can remember those first few nights of sleeping more than 4-5 hours in a row - we woke up in shock and then worried something was wrong with our little Okapis. One trick that worked very well for our girl was water in a sippy cup/bottle in her crib. She would drink it when she was thirsty and it helped her go back to sleep on her own. Still uses it in fact.

As they get older and they learn to call your name, complain about what's wrong, it gets harder, but also clearer how you're "supposed" to handle it. Also rewards and incentives work more easily than they would for you now (okay, you probably don't need incentives to sleep all night...).

But helping my Okapis sleep through the night made a HUGE difference in my relationship with them, creating a much stronger bond than I had ever hoped was possible. One that only gets stronger every time we survive a new sleep challenge.

6/13/06, 8:54 PM  
Blogger Chicky Chicky Baby said...

I'll keep this short because I wrote you a comment earlier today and Blogger fucking ate it and I'm disgusted with Blogger and with life in general (and some other people who feel the need to force their opinions on you) right now...

You and Nate will decide when the right time is and what is the right way to proceed with Thalia's sleeping situation. And I wish you much luck with that because it really is a big deal and its not easy. But whatever you choose will be right for you and your family and everyone else and their opinions be damned.

And Thalia is so damn cute I need to go back and gaze upon the cuteness again.

6/13/06, 9:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

While you guys are negotiating this, I will preach to the choir, and give you my 2 cents. (Does Nate read these replies?)

All good things come to an end. And then other good things begin. I can assure you from personal experience that she will be in no way psychologically harmed by leaving your bed and sleeping in her crib.

I used headphones and did the dishes and sang. And cried. But she slept through the night within 4 days. Then, I was re-born. You and Nate will be too.

6/13/06, 9:10 PM  
Blogger Pendullum said...

And then you start to wrestle with the Barbie issue and what Disney is really telling girls...and are you comfortable living with it...
ahhh... in the end do what's inside your bones when you are living in the moment... and always remind yourself that you are human, you make mistakes....and that life is messy.... and who would want it any other way????

6/13/06, 9:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I feel for you. We moved Zoe to her crib at 12 months. Four days of hell, and then she started to go to sleep with very little crying. Then no crying. Then, she started waking up only once a night! Hallelujah! Sleep! We'd forgotten what it felt like.
At 13 months I weaned her. And then.... she started sleeping for 12 hours straight. And, give or take a nightmare or two, she's kept it up. 12 hours of uninterrupted quiet. Can you imagine?

So... good luck. When you decide to move her, stick to your guns. She'll probably cry and scream for a few days (and yes, I know you'll go in, pick her up, comfort her - we did, too) but it should get better in a few days.

Of course, you shouldn't do it until you're sure you're ready. But when you are ready, don't feel guilty. She has to sleep by herself someday.

6/14/06, 12:26 AM  
Blogger ms blue said...

Rules were made to be broken. Even our own. I know that any amount of travel always makes co-not sleeping mandatory.

She is the cutest little fry gal around!

6/14/06, 7:21 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bless your hearts! O. just slept through the night for the first time last night (whoop!!) at 14 months. Sleep has been a major issue for us.

We co-slept for 12 months and the first step towards more unbroken sleep was cutting out the night feedings. I just shortened each one until phasing them out altogether.

I have read many, many books and the one most helpful to us was The No-Cry Sleep Solution. She has some good ideas and fewer of those damned "We left him to cry it out and 10 minutes later he was asleep!" stories.

Good luck! This too shall pass.

6/14/06, 7:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I laugh now when I think back to the stuff I swore I'd always do/never do with the kids. And I used to think consistency would be EASY. It is, for some things -- it's not hard to refuse to purchase Bratz dolls or let my kid have treats whenever we're at a store. But some gray areas are much more difficult, especially anything involving sleep.

Good luck with the sleep transitions!

6/14/06, 7:09 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Heeeheee. Yup. I know what you mean...

6/14/06, 7:17 PM  
Blogger Stacy said...

It's so hard when all you want to do is get some damn sleep. I got lucky because J actually doesn't like sleeping with mommy and daddy but if she did we'd have a co-sleeping family because I value sleep way more than bedtime politics.

6/14/06, 9:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Okay. Here's my advice as the old lady on the block. Never, ever, ever do something that makes your gut wrentch when it comes to your child. You or your partner. Whatever it is ... sleeping, clothing, haircuts, arguing over schools .... whatever. Co-sleeping eventually ends, babyhood is fleeting. Our 11-year old began sleeping truly by himself at some point, and I don't even remember it, it was that gentle and unimportant. No staggering nights of crying and agony. Just a gentle end to the time he needed me / us at night. And, we didn't ALL co-sleep together. Child and I did a futon on the floor of his room, al la Japanese families where Father has to awaken for Office in Morning. Now at 11, he's a cello playing, arithmatic doing, baseball loving boy, and he doens't co-sleep any more. He's well adjusted, sleeps soundly at night. Well, except when Santa Clause comes, because he's still scared of the big guy coming in the house ... and he still believes. Bottom line: do not force a child through developmental stages. If they aren't ready to be done with something, they will keep going back to it over and over and over until they are.

6/14/06, 10:39 PM  
Blogger Movin Mom said...

We let our first born sleep with us until our 2nd born came along and then one day when he was 14 months old he came up to me and said , "Mommy me sleepy go to bed!" so I said okay knowing full well he was going into his room to play. I checked on him a 1/2 an hour later and he was snoring with his blanket tucked under his armpits. And then i knew I had to get the oldest to the same point. So I spent 1 week straight getting him where he was able to sleep on his own. It was as hard as it was to deliver him.

HOWEVER since Thalia is a girl and an only child I say enjoy it until you don;t and then you will do what you have to do to change things. I assume once she hits 20 she won;t be in your bed anymore.

6/15/06, 12:19 AM  
Blogger BabyonBored said...

I haven't read one previous comment so bear with me. IMHO, put the kid in the crib and let her cry. She'll stop. It's like crate training a dog. They start to love it! it's like their place. They feel safe there. Our baby cried for awhile at first and now she freakin' loves it! She reads in bed (cause it doesn't dark til like 9) and plays her fisher price aquarium and makes herself busy. When she cries, once in awhile, we go in and give her a pat and get the hell out and back to our tv show. good luck.

6/15/06, 12:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My Dawson is almost two years old. Yes. I said almost two (Sept.) and he sleeps in his crib. But he still gets up at 4 am and requests a cup of milk. I'm so baaddddd. I will never be able to break him of this, I fear.

6/15/06, 2:36 PM  
Blogger Bri said...

Ashley is anti-sleep as well - always has been. Drives me insane. I love sleep. In fact, if someone could buy sleep for me as a present, it would be the best thing I've ever gotten. I have no tricks - alas nothing as worked for us either - only sympathy... Good luck!

6/15/06, 3:05 PM  
Blogger Ruth Dynamite said...

Your daughter is absolutely adorable. As for co-sleeping, I struggled with this for a long time and was very worried about what I was "supposed" to be doing. I did what felt right, and despite that, my kids (5 & 7) both sleep in their own beds now - very happily.

6/17/06, 6:33 AM  
Blogger Goddess Extraordinaire said...

Love this post. I realize I'm a bit late, and I know other people have said this, but hang in there.

Eventually, all kids wind up sleeping in their own beds, and they all eventually sleep through the night.

It kinda like getting teeth, everyone does eventually.

6/20/06, 4:44 PM  
Blogger Andrea said...

I am so there with you. Our Royal Battle for sleep has been a long time in coming, since last Thanksgiving, when I lapsed in my steadfast refusal to let him start sleeping with us and unleashed Unsleeping Hell on our household. I'm glad to say the Little Prince hasn't had a single night in his favor since the Royal Battle commenced, by which I mean he hasn't spent more than half the night in our bed. Last night, he was in his own bed the whole night. Slowly, but surely we're making headway. Surprisingly I've become less desperate to get him into his own bed the last several days, and it seems to still be working. Huh. Who knew being patient would help?

Good luck to you. I hope you get this comment, since I've been away and am only now just catching up. I'm a few days behind.

6/21/06, 4:55 PM  
Blogger The Ringleins said...

I know this is a completely old post, and I find it a little humorous that I stumbled upon it when searching for sleep solutions on google. Ha.

This post rang so true. Before our oldest daughter was born we bought a beautiful Italian crib. I loved it. She did not. I brought her home from the hospital and couldn't put her precious body in there all by herself...we ended up co-sleeping for a year or so...and then I transformed her crib into a toddler bed. Surely she would sleep in it soon. Surely I would stop nursing her after one year. Nope. At about 18-months I got pregnant and became so sensitive to nursing and my bad habit of nursing our daughter to sleep that I started letting her watch tv to fall asleep - something I never thought I'd do. But, I did get her totally weaned, at around 2. I bought a toddler bed and returned the crib back to its crib state for the new baby...which turned out to be new "babies" - yes twins. Now, our 2, almost 3-year-old is still in our bed. But my husband has taken to sleeping in the guest room. I take turns doing the mommy shuffle to feed the twins, yes, every three hours in the night and then on nights when I'm too tired to do the shuffle, I let the twins sleep in the queen bed with 2-year-old and me. It is rather cute and sweet to look over at all my girls together...but it is rather nice to daydream (certainly not night dream) about a time when I'll be able to sleep through the night.

10/17/09, 1:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for your posts.
I stupidly volunteered to my ped that we co-sleep and was told it was "banned". Then after some degrading comments, in all caps he wrote "NO COSLEEPING!" on his file.
I brought it up for advice because I was at the age limit I had set. Which has blown right by, with a few attempts at letting baby cry it out.. its wierd though.. what animal gives birth then digs a separate den for the litter? Why do we think they belong in a far away room from birth? I needed to bring him into our bed when I got sick and discovered more sleep and more peace of mind. Thank you for sharing about it. And thank you to the mommys.

12/16/12, 12:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ps-but we are exhausted and keep working on it .. ie more solids at night, more getting used to crib time...

12/16/12, 7:34 AM  

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