For 11 weeks I rocked, cuddled, patted, walked, wore, strolled...just about everything I could think of to get Tazzy to sleep. Bedtime would take anywhere from one to three hours.
Sleep Training Methods
I had no idea that babies need to be taught to sleep and that there are all of these books with different training methods on how to do it. I actually didn't start reading them until after Tazzy was born, which was a little late because I was exhausted the first four weeks of her life. I read "The Baby Sleep Solution" in a couple hours. In theory this type of training made sense to me because it wasn't the "no cry" and it also wasn't the "cry it out" solution. I also read bits and pieces of "Healthy Sleep Habits Happy Child" "Baby Wise," both highly recommended by friends and relatives.
Limited Crying Sleep Training
After all of the reading and research of trying to figure out which sleep training method would work for us we decided to try the "limited crying" approach. It's in between the "no cry" and "cry it out." We had Vivian Sonnenberg a sleep consultant come over to explain how it works and show us.
I'm not going to lie. It was one of the hardest things I've had to do with her...listen to my baby cry for a predetermined number of minutes (based on her weight and age). The first day there was a lot of crying both from baby and mommy. I thought to myself, "I'm a monster!" I was upset at Josh thinking that he convinced me to do this "training!" And pissed at myself for letting myself be convinced really. I realized that we had started the training and the least I could do was see it through for 24 hours.
I had to keep saying, "The crying is not hurting her but sleep deprivation is." I also kept thinking, "This has worked for so many people that I know, respect and trust so this training has to work."
We're going on day nine and results have been phenomenal! For the past eight days Tazzy has been taking three naps a day and sleeping 11-12 hours at night without waking up. And I'd like to thank my husband Josh for assuring me that this sleep training was the right thing to do.
I'm not going to try to explain the process here because there is a lot more that goes into it than just letting your baby cry. For example, we have a routine that we do before each nap and bedtime and we only let her cry for a prescribed amount of time before going in to the room to soothe her.
The processes is taxing but after having gotten through the first day/week I can see clearly that it's working and already Tazzy is getting much more rest. Not to mention I feel like I'm getting some of my life back. Up until this, she would would only nap in my arms :) It's also nice to have a few hours of alone time with Josh in the evenings.
There are so many different sleep training methods out there for you to choose from. No matter the sleep training method, I am just now realizing just how important sleep for a baby is not to mention parents. Overall Tazzy is a lot happier because she is rested. Her tempermet is still fussy but we've come a long way from where we first began three months ago :)
PHOTO NOTE: Tazzy no longer sleeps on her belly and when she did, someone was always around watching her closely. P.S. Why was it okay for our generation to only sleep on our bellies and now it's a sin? No need to answer that... I know, I know. It's just funny to me.