One of the first questions strangers ask me after seeing Xander is, “are you getting much sleep?” or “is he sleeping through the night?” I didn’t understand why they cared if I was a well-rested mother or not. But the more I though about it, I realized that parenthood is a club. If you’re not a parent, well then, you just don’t understand.
You don’t understand how special and cool it is to see the eyes of your child for the first time or how hard those first 2 week are. Non- parents truly don’t know how frustrating it is to hear your newborn cry or how amazing it is to have your baby smile AT you for the first time. Counting poopy diapers, calculating when baby’s next feeding is, or praying for a good night are things all parents have done. A hot issue in the club of parenthood . . . how to get your baby to sleep through the night. Nick and I have been fantasizing about those wonderful 8-10 hour stretches of sleep we use to get, and I think we’d do ANYTHING to regain those blissful nights.
Enter Babywise. The book is considered evil by some and a godsend by others. The book presents a method to get your baby sleeping through the night by 8-12 weeks. Nick and I devoured the book and planned to implement it 100%. Well, we quickly learned that our baby wasn’t exactly textbook. The book suggests putting your newborn on a 2 1/2- 3 hour feeding schedule for the first 8 weeks of life. Babies should follow a eat, wake, and sleep cycle. Xander had no problem following the 2 1/2 hour eating schedule, but often the eat/wake/sleep turned into the eat/wake/no sleep or the eat/no wake/lots of sleep. Nick and I kept up with the plan and tried our best to get Xander to follow the Babywise concept, but we soon discovered that he’d do is own thing. In the mornings and afternoon he’s a babywise baby. In the early evening, he’s not. He doesn’t nap for more than 30 minutes between 4:30-10pm. We’ve tried everything to get him to take his naps- the swing, the pacifier, a car ride. Nope. Nothing. So, we’ve come to terms with it and we don’t really have much to complain about. Xander is happy and healthy and sleeping well at night. He normally sleeps a 4-5 hour stretch for the beginning of the night and a 2-3 hour stretch after that. He only wakes up 1 time during the night and this habit began during week 3 (yes, we’re lucky). But, get this: last night he slept from 10pm – 5am! His longest stretch yet!! After I fed him, he slept for an additional 2 hours before starting the day. Technically, he slept through the night! It may have been a one time thing, but hey, it’s a start! Anyone in the parenthood club can understand my excitement. 🙂