Guys I thought I would touch base about our whole sleep debacle and you know, just tell you how we are getting on over here with regards to sleep training. About three months ago I shared about how we sleep-trained Hunter and how with the help of Baby Wise she seemed to be sleeping pretty well. While we never got her to sleep the fun 12 hours the book expects her too, she was sleeping roughly 10-11 hours a night and that was goof enough for us! (*not every night, but I would say at least 80% of the time)
But then we went on holiday to Mauritius and the boy’s schools were on holiday so we ended up going away to Robertson at the end of the holiday again. And somewhere in between it all she went straight back to her old tricks of waking up at night. Throw in separation anxiety and a few extra teeth, and it meant we were back to where we started. Good old square one.
The funny thing is that she slept so well in Mauritius and although she didn’t sleep right through, she only woke up once a night and then went back to sleep ’til even later than usual. I went against everything I had been taught and gave her boob at about 3 am but guys, It worked for us and the good thing was that she slept on holiday, in a new place! And this meant that we could get rest and feel great the next morning too and enjoy our days without feeling like we had been on a booze cruise the night before. (Is it just me or do you also feel like waking up a million times a night can leave you feeling like you have the world’s worst hangover?) And she even napped everyday on the beach for 2-3 hours!
Anyway, of course when we got back she was obviously having serious withdrawals from the island air because she went back to struggling to sleep for longer than 3 hour stretches. In that time she did cut a new tooth and maybe all the holiday activity and excitement gave her some serious FOMO. But no matter how hard I tried to get her back into her routine, it just wasn’t sticking like the first time. No matter how long I left her to cry she just didn’t settle. UNTIL I GAVE HER BOOBIE! Yup I did what I told all of you NOT to do!
So does that make me a fraud? The fact that I recommended something to you that isn’t working for us right now? Or rather that we cannot implement properly?? NO! Here’s how I see it:
- As much as a still believe that the Baby Wise Method makes so much sense, it’s not always fail proof and there are so many factors to consider.
- Going away to a different place with different surroundings is going to be disruptive for a baby. We were actually quite blessed that it worked in reverse for us so we could actually enjoy our holiday. Coming back home to a child that was a little all over the place with routine was to be expected. (As much is it sucked, looking back now, I couldn’t have expected any more from her)
- Babies are always developing and reaching new milestones. Their bones are growing, new teeth are being cut and they pick up niggly coughs and colds which are going to make them restless and miserable and hinder you from sleep-training at certain times. Hunter was cutting teeth, on the cusp of walking and often snotty, meaning sleep-training was challenging at the best of times. She also turned one in July, three weeks after getting back from our trip.
- I have two other children! I have tried to keep her in a routine as much as our crazy life will allow. But with a nanny only three days a week and kids with extra murals, different pick up times and general chaos, it’s not always easy to stick to a rigid schedule. Of course having one child makes it totally doable and possibly even two. But THREE kids? Who am I kidding? I have had to realise that it’s not going to be perfect, but that doesn’t mean we don’t try to do our best.
- I’ve tried to relinquish the control and just accept that she’s not in the best sleep routine and that she is going to have some really bad nights. I have learnt to just roll with it and get on with it as best I can.
SO, where is she at with her sleep at the moment? Well, she has some really bad night as I mentioned, where she just wakes up from 1 am and struggles to settle (unless I give her boob) BUT then she has some REALLY good nights, like last night, where she slept through from 7.30pm -5.45 without a single peep! (Of course good old Murphy paid us a visit and both boys landed up next to our beds at 3 am. (CAN WE EVER WIN? LIKE REALLY WIN AT THIS PARENTING THING??”)
If theres one thing that I keep being reminded of it’s that parenting is a journey full of ups and downs, triumphs and victories, frustrations, challenges and many many guesting games as we continue to strive to what’s best for our families. There’s no clear cut way to do things and at the end of the day we need to trust that in each season we are enough. Yes, even when we make mistakes and miss the mark and give in, we are enough. Our love for our children is never-failing and we can leave the guilt at the door. ♥