A Difficult Transition – Sleep Training Update #1

Alex and I have come to our first difficult bump in the road when it comes to parenting decisions. 😥 We are still praying about how or if we are going to sleep train Oriyah. Sleep training isn’t something that I thought a lot about during my pregnancy. How hard could it be right? You simply put your kids to bed! Ha… It’s funny how the things you say you will never do – before becoming a parent – you end up doing! I always said I didn’t want to co-sleep but we ended up doing it out of nessecity.

Oriyah is a little high maintenance – like her mama. {wink} She did NOT sleep a wink for the first 72 hours after she was born. As a newborn she always wanted to be held. My natural instinct was to comfort her and that’s what I did. The second we placed her in a bassinet she would pump out the tears! I tried once to let her cry for 10 minutes to see if she would settle down but it only made her more upset and me about to go into cardiac arrest! It just didn’t feel right. So… from week 1 she started sleeping in bed with us. Alex and I both love it! It is so precious to fall asleep at night laying next to my baby and wake up to her bright eyes and toothless grin in the morning! Co-sleeping makes nighttime feedings a breeze. Overall, I’ve really enjoyed it.

However, now that she has become mobile it’s become more difficult. We have a queen size bed and it’s a tight squeeze with a baby sprawled out between us. Alex is also a really light sleeper. The moment she moves or makes a sound at night he is wide awake. He usually ends up sleeping on the couch about once a week which is not ideal! Living in a one bedroom apartment with no room for a crib and thin walls also complicated things!

In 4 days we are moving and Ori will finally have her own room! Now the trick is figuring out how to get her to sleep in it! We are both sad but know it’s probably time to make the difficult transition from co-sleeping to independent sleeping. I need her to sleep by herself during naps throughout the day so I can get stuff done! Alex and I would also like to be able to stay up and spend time together after she goes down for the night.

I would be 100% happy if we could train her to nap in her crib and sleep in her crib part of the night… that way I can still wake up to her sweet face jibber-jabbering in the morning! But how…? How can I achieve that without traumatizing her or myself?!? We are both pretty attached and she also likes to comfort nurse and won’t take a pacifier. :/

I think we will keep her with us a few weeks after moving… too much change at one time is not good for babies. Once she is acclimated to the new place we can start training her . It will be a progressive transition from our room to taking naps in her room to sleeping at night in her big girl bed.
I have heard that doing the same routine (read the same book, sing the same song, and always give them a kiss) helps them to feel comforted and associate those things with bedtime. I guess we will see :/

I’m not comfortable with letting her cry-it-out for too long. It’s definitely one of those ( it hurts me more than it hurts you) feelings! While I don’t think kids whose parents use the cry-it-out method suffer permanent emotional  damage – it just doesn’t feel right!?! Do I love Ori too much?

Numerous reputable studies have shown that leaving a baby to cry causes them to produce an elevated level of stress hormones which can have a negative effect on their health and growth. On the other hand… I’m sure her waking up every time I try and “sneak away” isn’t the best for her either.  She needs quality sleep. But if I don’t let her cry how will she learn to sleep by herself? Will she think if she fusses for a few minutes mommy will come get me?!?

Any veteran moms have words of wisdom for me?

B”H,

Maayan

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