As I've been reporting in my weekly Baby James blog posts, he has NOT BEEN SLEEPING! He would get up several times per night and I would feed him...it was EXHAUSTING! I finally decided I needed to do something about it because coffee was no longer helping me survive the day. So I opened up my Baby 411 book:
This is where I first read about the Ferber Method. I was hesitant at first because I'm not a "let your baby cry it out" kind of person. As I read more about it, I felt more comfortable about trying it out.
Here are the basics:
- Don't let your baby fall asleep by feeding, rocking, or being stroked (which we don't do anyway).
- Have a sleep routine (which we do).
- Baby should sleep in the same place for naps and bedtime (which we do 90% of the time).
- Avoid sleep crutches (i.e. pacifiers)...James has no crutches.
- Put your baby down relaxed but not asleep (another check).
- PROGRESSIVE WAITING (the part I put into action)...
Night #1- perfect example of progressive waiting. This night was rough:
-Put J in bed at 9:20, he woke up at 11:45.
-I went into his room, DID NOT PICK HIM UP, but spoke quietly to him, patted his butt (which he likes), and rubbed his back FOR ONLY 1 MINUTE...if you know me well, you'll know that I literally had a stopwatch and timed myself for one minute....NERD ALERT!
-I then left the room and waited 3 minutes. He cried the whole time. I then did 1 minute of attention as described above.
-I repeated the process but each time I increased the waiting period. I went from 3 minutes to 5 minutes then 10 and 20 minutes.
-J cried between each attention period until he FINALLY fell asleep 1 hour later.
-He woke up again around 4:15 so I fed him and changed his diaper.
Night #2- bed at 9:10, woke at 1:25, did the progressive waiting process which only took 10 minutes this night to get him to fall back asleep. He woke at 4:20 for diaper and food.
Night #3- bed at 9:05, woke at 1:15, took about 15 minutes of progressive waiting to fall back asleep; woke at 3:50 for diaper and food.
Night #4- the first GLORIOUS night. Bed at 9:00, woke at 4:15!!!! For those counting, that's 7 hours and 15 minutes of sleep without eating! (I did wake up at 2 a.m. to pump)
Night #5- bed at 9:25, woke at 5:45!!!! 8 hours and 20 minutes of sleep without eating! (again, I pumped at 2 a.m.)
Although that first night was rough, the next two were tolerable and the last two were amazing! Hopefully this "fixed" James' sleeping problem! If only I had known I was enabling him by feeding him every time he woke up! He's only 6 months and I'm already enabling! AHHH!