As with most parents sleep was a big struggle for us, and something I became quite controlling about. In the really early days, it could take hours to get him to go down to sleep at night only for him to wake up 2-3 hours later and be inconsolable with bad gas which would take a few more hours to settle him down again. It became exhausting and I felt so defeated that I didn’t have a baby that would go to sleep awake and stay sleeping for over half of the night.
I began tracking his sleep and awake times for 1.5 months, and after learning how to deal with most of his digestive issues I found a pattern of sleep that, when having the right amount of naps, he would sleep for a 5ish hour stretch followed by only 1-2 more wakeups before morning. After I found this magic mix I clung to it for dear life because his crappy sleep days were so so terrible and would come with so many hours of crying. Those terrible nights felt like a cruel version of hell so I made it my purpose to make sure he slept well so that we would have a happy baby and therefore happy parents.
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This system worked really well and he would sleep great with 5 – 7 hour stretches and only 1 – 2 wakeups total at night but it came at a cost of being constantly stressed out whenever his naps wouldn’t quite work out as I had hoped and having to rock him to sleep for what felt like forever. Nonetheless, I felt we had a good system and was sticking to it, that is until the dreaded 4 month sleep regression came early when he was just 2.5 months old.
Since his great sleeping habits completely went out the window and turned into him waking every 45 minutes – 2 hours I decided to let things go and start to focus on teaching good sleeping habits instead of rocking him to sleep for 10+ minutes and trying to force naps on him. I figured his sleep was already crap so it couldn’t really get any worse. Thankfully, after a week of terrible sleep, and continued persistence his sleep had pretty much gone back to what it used to be and now he is able to go to sleep drowsy but awake! We have struggled with him somewhat reverting back to his terrible sleep pattern while he’s had a bad cold, but now that he’s starting to feel better, he’s starting to get back to longer stretches again.
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If any of this sounds like you I totally feel for you, it’s rough, but we will get through it and know that you’re not alone. I’ve found different mom Facebook groups to be very supportive and reassuring, and I definitely recommend having a few of those to reach out to and scroll through during those hard long nights. If you’d like to check out some tips on how we were able to get things back on track check out my tips for getting a baby to sleep.