Better Bedtime Sleep
Last night was rough… first time putting him to sleep in the crib at bedtime. I had him in bed early around 8:00/8:15pm and he slept for 40min and then woke up crying. I tried nursing him back to sleep and it almost worked, but he woke up once I set him back down in the crib. I attempted to get him back to sleep for 2 hours, and fed him again at his usual time around 11pm. Once again he fell asleep while eating and woke up when I tried to set him down in the crib. He finally went to sleep around 1:20am.
In the past he would have normally slept until morning, but he must still be getting used to the crib because he only slept for about 3.5hrs and woke up crying at 5am. Thankfully I was able to nurse him back to sleep quickly and he slept again for another 3hrs or so. We were both quite tired and after I fed him at 8:30am we fell asleep in the glider for about an hour. I tried to get him to nap around 10:30am but that failed… he was hungry again and slept while nursing.
The day got better though and he napped at 11:30 for almost an hour and again at 2:15pm for two hours! He had a final nap at 6:15pm and I woke him up after 30 min. He’s been asleep now in bed for about an hour… we’ll see how he does tonight. The pattern for the last few weeks has been going to bed around 9pm, wake up an hour later, take an hour or so to go back to sleep and get a feeding in. Wake up an hour later and take another hour to go back to sleep and then sleep through the night. That was while in the chair/rocker and he had a slight variation from that the past two nights but close to that pattern.
Sleep Training Assistance
Since I know that sleep associations will keep him from sleeping well on his own, nursing and the crib lights will not work to put him to sleep all the way. Otherwise he’ll just wake up after 40min (or right away if nursing). So I tried various other techniques and I think I found a combination that will work for now at least.
Per the usual routine, the last thing we do is read a book, and after that I turn off all the lights except his nightlights. We rock in the glider during his first lullaby song (Album is called I Dream of You by JJ Heller). I then set him in the crib and give him his little blanket (he loves to hold it and rub it on his face) and sit next to his crib and “shh” while the next lullaby song plays. Once he’s more settled and stops staring at his crib light, I turn off the bottom light. The ceiling light is still going while I continue to “shh” and play his lullaby music (I incrementally turn down the volume every minute or so). When it seems he’s almost asleep, I turn off the ceiling light and stop “shh-ing” and the volume is really low on his lullaby music. Once I think he’s all the way asleep I turn of the music. It worked for his “2hr” nap earlier today and so far it’s worked for bedtime tonight.
If he gets too worked up crying and fussing it takes FOREVER to get him settled and back to sleep as I found out last night. I hope that doesn’t happen again tonight, it was exhausting.