Sleep boot camp

Friday night it was back to square one… back to sleep boot camp for Lily.

She had been so good for so long, turning towards her crib when she was sleepy and tired, sleeping 8-10 hours straight, only feeding once during the night but then, everything changed!

Lately she has been fighting her sleep. Like REALLY fighting her sleep.

She will be so tired and sleepy, basically sleeping in our arms but the moment we put her down in her crib, she will start screaming and crying.

She also started waking up earlier during the night for a feeding which was then followed by another feeding because it wasn’t wake up time yet.

Will and I couldn’t figure it out. We know she is teething and that she is going through a growing spurt (like daily!) but something had to be done.

We were both starting to be exhausted and she was starting to wake up tired and cranky instead of rested and playful.

Parenting magazine happened to have arrived in the mail on friday and in there was an article (Sweet surrender) about two moms (Sara and Stephanie) who are friends but have different views about letting baby cry it out or soothing baby to sleep.

I read the article and liked Sara’s point of view. Cry it out but with some soothing also.

I remembered that Will and I had gone through this with Lily when we decided to try to have her wake only once during the night instead of 2-3 times like she was doing.

It was tough but, it worked.

So, friday night when Lily woke up at 4:15am, both of us let her be for a while. The whole point is to not respond to her right away and let her try to fall back asleep on her own.

After 15 minutes, Lily was really screaming and crying. I went to her, checked on her and told her that she was ok. That we were right here, that it was still night time and time to go back to sleep. I gently rubbed her back and went back to bed. (the point is to not pick her up)

She wasn’t having any of it. A now MAD Lily cried and screamed even louder.

In bed (2′ away from Lily’s crib), Will and I looked at each other and tried to stay strong…

I felt horrible. As she screamed and cried, I felt like the WORST mom in the world. And the worst neighbor also. (we live in a condo building with neighbors all around)

Another 15 minutes went by and Lily was still crying and screaming. Again I went to her and tried to soothe her without picking her up and nursing her.

I went to her every 15 minutes. I went to her 4 times. Lily cried and screamed for a whole hour! (it seemed like 10!)

As I lied in bed, I kept waiting for cops to knock on our door because the neighbors must have thought that we had abandoned our baby.

At 5:15am, the last time I went to her, she finally gave in. An exhausted Lily finally fell back asleep as I gently rubbed her head.

After an hour of listening to Lily crying and screaming, I was exhausted and couldn’t go back to sleep.

I felt horrible. Was this the right approach?

As horrible as it was, it works.

It works for us anyway….

P.S.- The next morning, Lily must have known that I got the idea from Parenting magazine because I found her on the floor ripping it to pieces. HA! 😉

Lily ripping up the evil guide as far as she is concerned