Friday, May 9, 2014

The Sleep Update

Some days I feel like I've got this being a mom thing down, and then some days I have no clue and am trying to do things the way I feel I should do them (based on what other people say).

I posted a while ago about Eleanor's sleep habits and how I was overwhelmed at times and she wasn't getting enough sleep.

And honestly?  I still don't think she does.  Sure she only wakes up at night once, twice on a rare night, but she doesn't have a set bedtime.  Some nights she's out at 8 pm and some nights I'm still trying to get her down at 10 pm.  Usually once she's down she'll sleep about 6 hours, nurse and sleep for a few more.  Most days she's up around 6:30 am and that's pretty consistent.

It's over whelming to be because I feel like she still should have a set bedtime and if I don't get her on one now, will I ever be able to?  Problem is that some days she's wide awake at 8 pm and when I try to lay her down (even with a full belly and a clean diaper) she just cries and cries. While I've started letting her fuss for a while (never screaming crying) she won't go to sleep.  Then I have those days where she is struggling to stay awake and it takes 2 minutes of nursing and she's down for the count.

But I 'think' I'm okay with it because she does generally sleep alright at night.

Nap times are still a struggle.  30 minute naps are average, although she has taken a few hour plus ones lately (one was when I was snuggling in bed with her).  I of course assume something is wrong because Eleanor never naps that long. 

Lately though I have noticed she tends to be tired around 8:00/8:30 am (so an hour and a half after waking). This nap last 30-40 minutes.

Usually then she'll be ready for one more nap before work. This is usually in the 12 pm -1 pm time frame. 

And she usually naps in the car on the way to work from about 2:10-2:40.  Not always, but most days.  Then she's up until almost bedtime though. Which is 5-6 hours.  She might fall asleep nursing at some point during that time frame but as soon as I go to lay her down she will wake up and cry.

I struggle because if I know she just ate and has a clean diaper and she's crying because she's tired that I should let her be.  But I also hate letting my baby cry herself to sleep (I'm not sure she really would anyway).  Fussing is fine, but when she starts to get a high pitch scream I can't stand it and have to go in and 'save' her.

Over the weekend I put in a soft blanket and she slept for an hour and half on it.  I've thought before that she prefers to sleep in bed with me for that reason (my bed is more comfortable), but research and studies say that's dangerous so I've never done it in her bed. When I tried it again she napped but half the time and I'm a nervous Nellie and didn't do again.

Another part -and a huge part - is that I'm not consistent.  I find something that works once and do it.  Then I get lazy or exhausted and it's easier to do something else and do that.  Then the original thing doesn't work and I try something else.

So my biggest downfall is inconsistency and I'm trying to work on that.  I just wish she could get it on her own. And by that I mean naps in her crib that last more than 30 minutes.

We do bedshare a lot. Rob sleeps in another room still so I sleep with her at least part of each night and usually for her nap at home. I didn't start this until 5 months when she outgrew her rock n play and it's something I never thought that I would do.

So that's how it goes generally.  But this week has been pretty rough.  She's had several nights where she wants to stay up for several hours in the middle of the night or doesn't go to bed for hours.  I cried last night because I was struggling. I'm exhausted and I just hate letting her cry like I mentioned above and I don't have the willpower to stick with something.

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