Thursday, October 01, 2009

On Sleep with Boring Parent Logistics

First, I'd like to say that after reading about fourteen books about babies and sleeping, all I have to say is that I am in no way an expert, but all the experts disagree with each other.

Annaliese was a rotten sleeper. At nearly two years of age she's better, but it still takes a long time and generally some tears for her to fall asleep, it's pretty common for her to cry out in the night (though she settles herself down most times), and though I hear rumors that her nap at school is over 2 hours, it sure ain't that way at home on the weekends.

Caspian is much easier to GET to sleep-- he doesn't fight it like Annaliese did. We have a quasi-schedule going, which some days works like a charm and other days seems to exist only in my head. But he still wakes 2-4 times between 7pm and 7am to nurse, fart, and burp. It's not always clear WHAT is waking him up, but it's always one of the other (hunger or gas).

I have contemplated the crying-it-out thing-- because after nearly two years of having about 20 nights where a child didn't wake me up, I'm getting pretty heartless-- but that method seems to be for babies who won't go to sleep rather than babies who conk out just fine but then wake up.

I get that 12 hours is a long stretch for a wee monster like mine. I don't mind doing a night feeding. That being said, getting up once is a whole lot different than 4 times, which has been the norm here as of late.

So what to do? How do I get my sweet ravenous and belchy little boy to stock up, sleep, eat, burp, and sleep again? Should I feed him once and then let him cry?

(the real kicker is that formula seems to make him gassier -- which I think is actually the bottle's fault, cos he swallows more air especially with tired parents holding it-- but breastmilk is kind of like a box of raisins-- tides him over but not for long).

Thoughts are appreciated. I swear that being a parent would be peachy keen if I could just have 8pm to dawn full of silent, sleeping children.

Oh, and ALSO...

He's totally outgrowing the bassinet, Annaliese is totally unable to fall asleep in a bed that she can get out of, and so right now he's sleeping swaddled on the guest bed. Should we suck it p, abandon the guest room idea, and stick a crib in there? Should Annaliese suck it up and get her brother in her room? Either way he needs to have a defined place of his own, I feel...


Huguette said...

Dear Folks ,
It is simply time to feed Caspian a solid food meal at night consisting of cereal and mashed banana or fruit.( Banana is the norm ) He has had the best food in the world so far . He is a growing boy and needs more to allow you to sleep . It sure helped form the sleep through the night concept . Try it it won't hurt and he has had the best protection so far . Now that he has teeth he is ready for steak !!! I hope he has not tried his teeth on you yet !!! Slow introduction but night time heavier food might help . Let me know if it works !! Bonne chance , God Bless , much love , maman

Anonymous said...

couldn't agree more...was just about to suggest the very same as maman...
Bananas,oatmeal,something to fill that growing
tummy that is screaming to be filled.He is growing SO fast....and you need your beauty sleep!One can read thousands of books and yet
logic stands alone in the end.
C'est la vie!
Sleep well!Bon dormir!

Oz said...

Boy no. one was a crappy sleeper until nine or ten months of age. We tried it all. Solid food. Crying it out (well, only a little, because I am weak willed). Sticking to the bedtime routine like mad. Boy no. two is a slightly better sleeper. Don't know why. Here's what sort of seems to help: incredibly consistent bedtime routine; putting him down almost asleep and then letting him fall asleep the rest of the way (sometimes includes fussing for a minute or two and requires going back to rock him again); moving him out of our room.

We decided to have no guest room and have each boy in his own room because sleep is very very very very very important to me and I would go nuts if one of them woke up the other. There's already too much waking. When they're a little older, they will share a room and we'll have an office/guest room again.

My basic philosophy, though, is you do whatever works for you and your kid, and sometimes you've got to experiment to find that.