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Tuesday, July 20, 2010

I...Need...Sleep.

I've got to admit it - I thought for sure that by six months old I'd have a baby who easily sleeps through the night. By this stage, I imagined myself resting my weary head on the pillow each night for at least 7-8 hours straight.

Boy, was I wrong.

Abigail started blissfully sleeping through the night by the time she was 3 months old. She'd sleep from approximately 9 pm each evening until 7 or 8 am, waking only once around 3 am for a bottle. I was thrilled! Little did I know that once she hit the 4 month wakeful period and started teething that things would take a turn for the worst. To compound our sleep issues further, she started rolling both back to front and front to back by the time she was 4.5 months old so she then needed to be weaned from her beloved swaddle at night as well.

When she started waking 4-5 times throughout the night, I originally thought, no big deal - I can handle this for a few weeks until everything goes back to normal. Then, after those next four weeks of sleepless nights, I thought, it's ok. This can't go on much longer. I'm sure she'll cut a tooth soon and we'll be back to sleeping through the night in a matter of days.

Guess what? I was wrong again.

It has now been over two months since Abbey has slept through the night. Heck, it's been almost 2 months since she's slept for 2 consecutive hours at a time during the night. She now wakes up anywhere from 7-15 times per night needing to be rocked back to sleep. Once I put her down, I'm lucky if she remains asleep for the next 45 minutes before waking again.

I'm utterly and hopelessly exhausted. I simply can't keep this up much longer. It would be great if Mike could help, but with him working 13 hour days 7 days a week right now, that's just not happening. I'm hopeful that once things slow down for him at work that I'll be able to catch a break. But really, I'd rather Abbey just start sleeping again. I wouldn't wish this on my worst enemy.

With no one to really turn to for help, I decided to purchase a few books from Half.com about helping babies and toddlers to sleep. I've already ruled out the possibility of "crying it out" and the Ferber Method as I simply don't condone any method that involves leaving Abbey to cry. As a result, I've decided on the following books:

The No-Cry Sleep Solution by Elizabeth Pantley

The Baby Whisperer Solves All of Your Problems: Sleeping, Eating, and Behavior by Melinda Blau and Tracy Hogg

On Becoming Baby Wise by Gary Ezzo and Robert Bucknam

All of these books got good reviews from other mommies on The Bump boards, so I figured I'd give them a shot. What the heck - I'm desperate.

I just started reading Elizabeth Pantley's book so I've still got a lot more reading ahead of me. I hope someone out there somewhere is able to provide me with some answers before I completely lose it.

5 comments:

Shannon

Good luck Stacey! I feel you! My middle child didnt sleep until about 7 months. we finally learned and were successful with our youngest (6 months old) to do the put to sleep when drowsy but awake. If she wakes up in the middle of the night, I will rub her head or give the binky back but I dont pick her up at all... not sure if its helpful (and you have to love the unsolicited advice- ha ha). Good luck! Abbey is an absolute doll!

Mrs. B

Okay, I thought it was just my baby doing this. I've been reading No-Cry and it was working, until and ear infection struck. Hoping we can get back on track soon. I can absolutely handle 2-3 wake-ups a night for a long stretch but not every hour on the hour!

MrsAstor

My little guy too stopped sleeping. Well who am I kidding, he never started. I teach and have to start back to work soon, so I knew something had to be done. I took the Ferber route, kicking and screaming, but hearing some really positive things about it. I was just like you, not wanting to let my little guy cry it out. The Ferber method though worked really well for us, and quickly. Within a few days he went from waking every 1-2 hours to every 3-6. Just a thought, but no matter what you choose I hope you get some sleep momma!

Kristy

First off, I'm your newest follower! I came across your blog on Picket Fence blogs and once I read a bit I realized we've got a few things in common. Surely, I had to follow you (:

I've got a daughter who is 6 months old too! She started sleeping through the night around 4 months old. Just this past week, she's started getting up on some nights around 3 am. I read in this months issue of Parents Magazine (i believe, it could have been BabyTalk) that around this age up to 9 months, babies may start waking in the night due to growing. Like, they may start walking or scooting soon. I'm hoping she's just about to start crawling and that's the case. I wish I could give better advice. I've tryed to let her cry in the beginning but I can't. I always freak out and wonder if she's actually hurt. She just started rolling over in her crib and she'll move around and stick limbs through the railings and kick her music toy.

Anyways, good luck with the method(s) you try! I hope it works out for the best fast. I know you need your sleep!

edmo

Let me make you feel better about your situation...
Bosto didn't sleep through the night until he was 15 months old. I'm not kidding. Marshall is 6.5 months old and he hasn't not one single night slept through the night. Not one morning where I woke up and thought, wow did he not wake up all night?

I don't like the cry it out methods. We did allow Boston to cry but never like those books/methods recommend. We simply did what we could and sucked it up.

Marshall is still breastfed so he's up 2x a night to feed, so my husband definitely can't help. And he's going through this new phase where he cries like every 20 minutes even though he's not really awake. He cries if his pacifier falls out.

Marshall so needs to still be swaddled because his arms STILL wake him up at night, but he's definitely too big and gets out of a swaddle too easily.

I hope it gets easier for you, but this could go on for a bit. The best thing to do is to never expect to sleep because then not only are you tired but you're also disappointed. Hopefully she gets back to sleeping through the night soon.

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