Your body starts getting you ready for the baby arrival by disrupting your sleep the last trimester or for some its much earlier. Everyone jokes that you are getting ready for the baby! Well that was not nearly enough getting ready!
Sleep questions that will follow you...
Are they sleeping?
Do you swaddle or no?
Are they sleeping through the night?
Do you have a sleep routine?
Do you sleep train?
Do you co sleep?
Did you move them to a bed?
Are they going to sleep on time?
Are you letting them cry it out?
Did they drop a nap?
Are they getting up at 5am?
How many times do they get out of bed at night?
They are sleeping through their alarm.
They are missing the bus.
They are in bed all the time on weekends.
They are up so late
They are out so late I want to sleep.
They are off to college and getting minimal sleep
They are home on break and sleep past 1pm
Who knew that something you do on a daily basis would require so much thought, books and discussion.
1. Get to know your baby. What works for them? They have personalities from the date they arrive. What works for you? Doesn't matter what worked for your mom or MIL, they had their shot they did what worked for them. Take their advice if it helps but its like a salad. Eat what you like pick around what you don't.
2. Don't compare. We all had that friend who had the kid that slept 5 hours when they came home for the hospital. I regret to say with my first child that was my world. I thought this is a snap these other mothers must be doing something wrong. NOPE. He was 10lbs and 23 inches long when he came out. I gave birth to a 3 month old. He was growing so rapidly he ate and slept and ate a huge amount and slept for a long time. Just how he was made. Second one...well she ate a little slept a little. It does depend on what your reality is in your home don't compare to your friends kids or even to your first kid.
3. Set a schedule when they are old enough to have one. I know that is vague but baby's are not robots they are different so you will know. If they are 1 year then stop waiting for them to be ready, its now you being ready. Get ready and start the schedule. Set it based upon what is best for the baby not what is best for you. Don't try and set their body clock to what works for you. Did you enjoy that college and post college time when your sleep was about you? Well good because its not anymore. You used it up and you will get it again in about well in a while.
4. Make sure all parents are on the same page. Manipulation in toddler years is strong and everyone has to stay on same page. You are not being the nice parent if you are going in 3 times a night and feeding into the manipulation you are doing that so you can feel good. Its not about the child. Sleep is necessary for brain and body development. Think of that every time you want to give in and say OK here is your tablet.
5. Sleep discipline has a direct correlation on how they will behave, learn and grow. When they are school age be that parent that adheres to bedtime. We don't care that johnny gets his iPad and gets to watch videos until he sleeps. That is not this house. Ya, be that mean parent. They will be better for it later.
6. Sleep is fluid. There will be changes in patterns and naps and dropping naps and then adding them back. Its hard to be flexible with that schedule but address what is happening and come up with a new plan quickly. Avoid frustration and yelling it won't help on any level. Don't let it derail the whole process just modify the process a little bit and stay on course.
7. Set an example. I know parents that stay up way too late on the computer and Netflix and then get upset when the child gets up at 5:30am. Go to bed! Adjust your schedule to get yourself as much sleep as possible. If you are now saying you need downtime. You know what is great downtime? SLEEP!
8. Experts and books. If you are looking to speed up the process or make it seem like you have control over the situation then get a book, read an article, hire a sleep training person. They are all good things. But know the best training is consistency and the sleep trainer will tell you just that information. Read and be strong.
Happy sleeping. If you have any sleep issues. Drop me a note. I will help in any way I can.😁
The Family Coach