Thursday, May 3, 2007

Sleeping Beauty

Here is the sweet face I was greeted with this morning. Looks like she had a great night's sleep, doesn't it? You wouldn't suspect that this angel was up at 4:00 in the morning, screaming her head off for so long and so hard that it woke up Claire. And prompted me to get out of my warm bed and rock her back to sleep. After what seemed like an hour, she finally fell back asleep. For approximately 10 minutes. This went on until 5:15, when I gave in and fed her a bottle.

Arden has what we call a "sleeping problem." By that I mean that she doesn't. Sleep, that is.

Claire began sleeping through the night, on her own, around three months. I naively thought this was due to my superior parenting skills and was perhaps a little (a lot) smug around those moms whose infants were not sleeping through the night. I now realize I am paying for that smugness. To the tune of nearly 11 months (more like 13 if you count the final stages of my pregnancy) of no sleep.

Early on, Arden tricked us into thinking she was going to be a great sleeper. For one thing, you could just lay her down in her crib and she'd fall asleep, unlike her big sister who still enjoys being rocked. For another, she only woke about once a night for a feeding. But now, almost 11 months later, she still wakes (at least) once a night.

I've read all the books. "Babywise" (hated it), "Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Children" (OK, but not very effective), "The No-Cry Sleep Solution" (don't even get me started). I've searched the internet, scoured the parenting message boards (not recommended unless you feel like dealing with smug know-it-all moms--please see above), and asked all my friends for advice. So far, the general consensus is "let her cry".

Oh, if it were only that easy. This child, while seemingly mild-mannered and mellow, is not phased by the so-called "crying it out." She will cry for a minimum of an hour the first night. The second night, instead of just waking once, she'll wake two times. And so it goes.

I know that this will pass and that eventually Arden will sleep all night. Someday, when she is big, I'll probably look back on this time and think "that wasn't so bad." Well, actually, I probably won't.


ashley said...

You are so funny! I can actually hear you saying these things and it cracks me up. Sorry for the "no sleep" thing though. If it makes you feel any dogs usually wake me up 7:30. Just kidding..don't be mad! My time is definitely coming and I'm sure I will pay!

Missy said...

I love reading your blog. My nieces are such great entertainment! You know that I have no advice since I go and get Max EVERY single night and put him in my bed. This is the last child-lazy mom technique. It works for us. Most nights. Love ya!

Cortney said...

Oh, sweet Arden, please let your momma get some sleep! Girl, I know your pain. I thought Cade would never sleep all night. You know how difficult it was for me to let him cry; therefore, I never did! It wasn't until he was around 13 months that I could say, with confidence, he sleeps through the night. Your day of rest is coming.

bairds said...

I am so excited you are blogging!!! I think about you guys all the time and wonder how you are doing.
I am so sorry about the sleep thing. I have to agree with the concensus...let her cry. This will sound really horrid, but my pediatrician told me they took their 3rd son and put the pack and play in the other part of the house so he wouldn't disturb the other sleeping members of the family with his sleep issues. (this is Dr.Hubbard...from PAD). I have not gone to that extreme, but have used some other techniques like noise makers to drown out Ryan if he is having a bad night. Obviously if there is something wrong we tend to him, but if he is just being a little pill bug he gets to cry. I know I am a heartless mom, but we ALL need our sleep.

Lisa said...

M - this has nothing to do with this post (I try not to say too much about Rachel's sleep because we SOOOOO paid our dues with Ethan), but I wanted to comment on a previous post. The next time you get the 'how old is he' comment, I think you should say, "He's 10 months. Do you think this outfit is too girly for him?" Actually, the first time it happens to me I think I'll try it! We miss you guys.