Mother’s Day is tomorrow and maybe you’ve been thinking of what to get that special lady in your life. Maybe you’re the mommy ready to receive a wonderful gift celebrating the gift(s) you brought into the world. Whatever the case, there is one thing mom’s everywhere can agree on: a good night’s sleep.
The First Was Indeed The Worst...
Sleeper, I mean. Sophia was up every 15 minutes that first night in the hospital. Unfortunately, that was just the kind of sleeper she was. I was a first time mom and I was stumbling through it all. A good night was getting 2 solid hours of sleep in a row and having wake ups only lasting 45 minutes. I remember one night spending two hours getting Soph back to sleep. As soon as I placed her in the bassinet, my husband passed gas and woke her up. I quite literally cried with the baby. Sleeping for an hour, being up for two, and repeating the process was beyond exhausting. I put on a brave face, but I would have done questionable things for more than 4 hours of sleep.
As Sophia got older and still wasn’t sleeping through the night or even more than 3 hours at a time, I decided to try sleep training. I tried so many different methods I read about online. I was never a huge fan of the cry it out method, but I even tried that. Nothing was even remotely successful. None of the methods really fit my unique life or my very strong willed child. I even paid for a sleep training program. To give an idea of how well it worked for us, I can’t even remember the name of it. I eventually gave up and decided I just wouldn’t be able to sleep train her. I even began to doubt sleep training was even something that worked. Sophia finally slept through the night for the first time at 14.5 months, but didn’t do it consistently until almost two. When Nina was born, I resigned myself to the notion sleep was going out the window for a couple of years.
The turning point where my belief changed
Nina turned out to be a far milder mannered child than Sophia and a much better sleeper. I thought she was a “good” sleeper. Turns out, she was average but compared to my previous experience, she was amazing. One thing Nina wasn’t good at was self soothing. It took awhile to get her down and she had to nurse. She spent many nights next to me in the bed so I didn’t have to wake up fully to nurse her in the middle of the night. It was a method that worked. Well, at least until February 2020.
A month before the whole world shut down, Nina spiked a high fever and just cried. I took her to urgent care right away. She ended up with Influenza B and a double ear infection. I was pretty much nursing her around the clock for a week. It was the only thing that comforted her. Given she was actually quite sick, I have no regrets about doing this. However, it caused her sleep to get really bad. She was getting up constantly at night and needing to nurse. The illness had caused her to go through a sleep regression. However, now I had two kids to care for and I became desperate. One day when I was talking to my best friend right after COVID hit, I confided just how bad my sleep had gotten.
My friend Jen had recently done training to become a sleep consultant and immediately began suggesting sleep training. I was skeptical to say the least, but I figured since I was stuck at home anyways I might as well give it a shot before the “15 days to flatten the curve” ended. Now, I had no idea just how much time I had really had, but it was a decision I would never regret. Jen’s method wasn’t just another black and white method online. She tailored the plan to my needs and to Nina as an individual. It took only three days and Nina was sleeping through the night in her crib in her own room. It didn’t take long before she was sleeping better than Sophia.
Sleep: An Investment Worth Every Penny
I was now a firm believer in the amazing thing that was sleep training. Nina still is a better sleeper than Sophia and is so easy to get down. Even her daycare comments how easy it is to get her to nap. When I found out Nina would be a big sister at around 20 months old, I no longer feared the horrible lack of sleep. Jen told me there were things I could start when the baby was a newborn that would make sleep training down the line that much easier. I was confident a I could handle whatever Henry could throw at me. Turns out Henry is an amazing sleeper and super easy going, but I still am using some of those things to set him up for success later. He’s only two months old so I can’t sleep train yet, but I know who to turn to when I do.
If you had asked me before I had kids what I thought about paying someone to help teach your child Yao sleep through the night, I would have thought you were crazy. I no longer have that opinion. Having help does something the articles online could never accomplish: tailoring the method to the child and being there through issues for morale support. On paper, it may sound a little far fetched, but in reality, it’s the most amazing investment you could ever make.
Full disclosure, I am clearly not objective as this is my best friend’s business. However, I am getting nothing for promoting her. It wasn’t even her idea; I told her this was something I was going to do. I also would never promote something unless I truly believed in it. She frequently posts helpful hints on Facebook, writes articles in a local paper, and has a website set up for parents in need of sleep. Follow the link below for access to the website, links to the Facebook page, her email, and phone number. Consultations are done virtually, so it’s even pandemic friendly! I promise, it’s a gift no mother will regret... or father for that matter.