Monday, February 4, 2013



It is important.
One of the things new parents worry most about.
One of the biggest changes when one has a baby.

We've been blessed with good sleepers.
All five of them have slept through the night before they were a month old.
Michael was the oldest at 3 weeks old and Jared the youngest at 1 week old.
No such thing.

(Milky mouthed Jared @ 1 week old)

When people ask if we get any sleep and hear the results--
well, we get everything from "wow, how do you do it?" to 
"you're lying" to "can we come over and get some lessons."

So, I thought I would share what we do and don't do.
Even though there is nothing surprising or unusual in our methods.
I will say, on more than one occasion, medical persons have remarked to me that the way a baby reacts (sleep patterns included) has something to do with how I react and parent.  My babies are calm because I'm calm, my babies will feel relaxed if I am relaxed and so forth.
I believe there is truth to that.  

Here goes.
I do NOT have expectations that my baby will sleep through the night.
I don't expect it at all.
It has been a VERY pleasant surprise each time.

I do set up a changing station every evening.  
Diapers, wipes, A&D, a change of clothing, and a night light.
It is out and ready, the light on.
I NEVER, EVER, EVER turn on the regular lights.
We keep it as dark as possible.

I only change a diaper at night if absolutely necessary.
Blow out or poop of any sort or a super soaker.
(None of them have ever had diaper rash either)

I do NOT talk.
I make as little noise as possible--AT NIGHT.
We don't use any sound machines or anything like that.  

During the day, we make as much noise as necessary.
We have a small house and a bunch of kids--noise is inevitable.
Even with just Michael, I made noise while he was napping during the day.
The babies learn to deal with it.
It is noisy in the womb anyway, or so I've read.
We vacuum during naps, we play music, we play.
We don't stop life for a napping baby.
Baby sleeps.
All of them have slept.

(Jared yesterday. 2 1/2 months)

I do not schedule sleep time for my babies.
If they are tired, they will sleep.
I work around that.
I don't make my schedule so that we HAVE to be home at a certain time for naps, 
nor do they HAVE to be in their sleeping spot..crib, bassinet, playpen, whatever it sleep.
Again, if they are tired, they will sleep.  
Regardless of location.
Michael slept through a wedding reception at 2 months old.
Wedding receptions are not quiet.

Now, when I say my babies sleep, I don't mean just 3 or 4 hours.
I'm talking 6-8 hours to start out with.
Once they are good with that it has quickly become 10-12 hours a night.
(And yes, they still nap during the day for a two years--so far).
I would stay up with them until 11 or midnight at first, because I would rather just stay
up than get up and down several times in just a few hours.
Whatever it takes to keep the baby happy.

In those first couple of weeks, when the baby does get up to eat through the night,
I don't wait until s/he is crying.
We have the babies in our room in a bassinet, so once I hear movement or little noises on the "mom radar,"  I get up to check.
It is always me, by the way. 
 Mike has to get up early so I try to let him have as much sleep as possible. 
 Besides, he can't breastfeed.

Will I bring the baby in bed with me?
If I am super tired, I will just have him/her nurse in bed so we can just drift off to sleep.
I try not to make a habit of it though.

Oh, and NEVER wake a sleeping baby.
They are very good at letting their needs be known.
If the baby is hungry s/he will tell you.
Unless there is some kind of life-threatening/health issue, don't wake up the baby to eat.

I guess that would be it in a nutshell.
Questions?  Comments?  Likes?  Dislikes?
Did I miss anything?
Like I said, pretty basic.

No comments: