#whatmomsgoogle - sleep

Saturday, April 16, 2016


Welcome to #whatmomsgoogle where your two resident hot-mess-moms discuss what real moms are googling. We don't promise to be right but we do promise to be real and it's highly likely you'll leave feeling better about your parenting. Or, at the very least, slightly entertained. 

WARNING: I'm trying to keep it brief (good luck with that) this week as I'm prepping this post pre-Vegas and have about 82537292 things to do (and I may or may not be freaking out and seriously lacking on today's topic... sleep - thanks children, I swear I will miss you).

This week's google search:

Before I even get started let me just say that whoever coined the term "sleep like a baby" either did not have any children or was a spiteful sleep-deprived parent trying to convince others to come over to the dark-side. Either way, it's a crock of bull.

I know, some babies sleep like a dream... ya, NOT mine. Actually, I think I know like 2 people in life who have never cried talked about sleep issues with their kids. Congratulations, you have unicorn children and I am jealous.

yup you don't even need to type the word... MY BABY WONT SLEEP. I have Googled this one more than I care to admit... perhaps monthly... okay, weekly.

The sleep contradictions start from day one. We are instantly told not to let them sleep too much. You must wake the baby after ____ amount of time. Then before we know it we're pleading for them to sleep just a little longer (or at all). That pleading NEVER stops... until, I imagine, when they're teenagers and then it's back to them sleeping too much and the pleading to get them OUT of bed starts. We can't win.

newborn sleeping
awww so cute and squishy and sleepy... for now

This is such a HUGE topic with so many controversial sub-topics. Like all things with motherhood there are approximately 2947492 opinions on sleep. Things you absolutely need to be doing or what you can't do or you'll children will be forever doomed. Sleep-training? Whoa, that ignites all kinds of mommy wars and shaming on the interwebs. Co-sleeping? Ya, another hot button topic sure to spark a massive debate between mommas.

My thoughts? Well, they're scattered at best as I prep for this trip but ultimately is boils down to 'do what works for you'. That simple really. In case you're looking for something a little more research-based or less abstract here are some helpful and reputable sites for more info on:
Safe sleeping for your baby
Co-sleeping/Bed-sharing - creating a safe as possible environment 
Sleep training

Now, because I'm so lacking sleep and therefore ideas and personality apparently, I will share our little's sleep sagas:

Mini-me's sleep saga

co-sleeping baby and dad
snoozing with dad

Where: She started out in a bassinet in our room but that didn't last long before coming into our bed. It was easier for me and she slept much better being close with us. At around 8 months old we moved her to a crib and it was not an easy transition and required us to 'put her to sleep' for hours. Fun stuff. She ended up back in our bed after a family vacation with no crib (there was no way in heck I was putting her in the playpen provided, just no freaking way) and finally went into her crib in her room at around 10 months.
For how long: This sweet girl was one of those new babies that slept in relatively long stretches (at night) off the bat (don't hate me, the next one more than made up for this slice of heaven). I received mixed messages about whether or not to wake her up and ended up choosing to let her sleep (good call because she was healthy and would nurse for 2 solid hours before her big sleep - ya, also super fun). During regressions she'd throw parties in our bed for hours which led to Mr. B and I wanting to pull our hair out (seriously, she was raring to go at 2am for hours and you couldn't be mad because she was so funny... okay, you could be a little mad).
Self-soothe: ha. Ya, this little muffin was rocked or nursed to sleep until she was 10 months old. It was exhausting.

baby napping outside
don't let this fool you, she was rocked to sleep and then placed here... but cute nonetheless

Sleep training: I was so anti-sleep training, especially anything that involved letting my little muffin cry. Until at around 10 months when I was tired of getting kicked in the face repeatedly and we were spending hours each night getting her to sleep in her own room. My husband and I had no time in a day together and it wearing on our relationship. We decided to try a Ferber type method of sleep training and it took 3 days and the kid started sleeping like a dream: through the night, waking up super happy and mom and dad got their sanity back. Whew. We didn't do it for naps so she continued to nap like crap. Which is probably why I referred to her as "the napless wonder". I spent many a days driving around just to get her to catch a few Zzz's while I chugged coffee in Tim Horton's parking lot. What? Thank goodness I found Candy Crush at the time (that was deleted after 4 months because, well, Candy Crush is evil).

baby sleeping in high chair
no I will NOT nap... but I will fall asleep during lunch but so help me, you try and move me and it's nap over and out!

What things look like today: Mini-me was evicted from her crib just before her 2nd birthday. This kid rocked the double bed from the get-go and hasn't looked back. She's in bed doing her thing until she goes to sleep at 8. She sleeps until she is awakened by her brother's screaming (6:30-7). She'll sometimes wake up in the night to go pee and gets out of bed, on the potty, pees and just needs help getting back to bed. Few complaints here since the sleep training at 10 months. Oh, except the little beast naps 2 hours at daycare... guess how long she naps at home? Come on, guess? Ya, she does NOT nap at home.

Remember the time, after my first year of motherhood, that I thought I had it all figured out? hahahahah enter baby #2 and I'm back to Googling all the sleep things

Little man's sleep saga

newborn sleeping on toddler
taking a snooze on his big sis

Where: Little man started out in a bassinet in our room. He had a few nights in our bed but did NOT sleep well in there. Actually, he didn't sleep well at all, anywhere. Except his swing where he sometimes would sleep decently (while I, admittedly, slept close-by on the couch). He quickly grew out of the bassinet and was in his crib just before 3 months.
For how long: For the first 4-5 months (read: pre-milk allergy sorted out), this guy was up every few hours except on the unicorn nights were he had a 4 hour stretch or so. This was a dark and caffeine filled time for momma (okay, the caffeine is still a flowing over here).
Self-soothe: Initially no. Little man was nursed or bounced to sleep. I will never bounce on an exercise ball again. EVER.

baby sleeping in snow suit
passed out after a chilly winter walk

Sleep training: At a pediatrician appointment when Oliver was 4.5 months old the doc basically looked at me and said "he's tired, you're tired, you need to do some sleep training so that you guys get more sleep". He went into great detail about the Ferber method and spent a lot of time explaining a lot of things to me. I wavered for days and then, then I knew I needed to do something. I was too tired and not coping well. Day 1 I let him cry for his nap. 5 minutes, check-in, 3 minutes later he was out cold. WHAT?! I know all babies don't do this but apparently he just needed to fuss it out. This was a game changer and unlike with mini-me, I did it for naps too.
What things look like today: Little man sleeps in his crib. He has two 1.5 hour naps per day where he puts himself to sleep. He goes down at night between 6:30 and 7. He usually is up once to eat between 2 and 4am and then up between 5:15 and 6:15 (gotta work on those two bits). There are always one-offs with milestones and teething but it's a completely different story from a few months ago.

Then when the babies sleep, mom's are still kept up with achy boobs or racing thoughts that something is wrong with baby. Don't even pretend you haven't accidentally woken up your miraculously sleeping child while by making sure they were still breathing. Just me?

It's been my experience that everyone and their mother wants to (and will) tell you how to get your babies to sleep. It is also my experience that, at the end of the day and like all other issues of this nature, the bottom-line remains the same. You need to do what works for you and your family.

Now rush over to see what Abbie Answered . You won't regret it.

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