Friday, January 30, 2009

Baby Whisperer Day 7: and maybe the kitchen sink too... I've read most of the Healthy Habits book, and found it tremendously informative. The dude writes like a German Doctor. Fortunately I've read enough German philosophers and social theorists that in comparison it is very approachable. It just isn't the girlfriends-over-a-cup-of-tea vibe you get from Hogg and Pantley (especially Hogg - which is why I was so sad to learn that she passed away a few years ago; her voice is so reassuring and encouraging, you feel like you could e-mail her and she'd literally show up on your doorstep like Nanny 911 ready to save the day and solve all your problems). I like Weissbluth's research-based approach particularly; Hogg and Pantley do draw on published research but they are much more learn-on-the-job in their approach.

Anyway, one of Weissbluth's researched recommendations is to practice an early bedtime, like around 7 p.m. I have noticed that Valerie's waking time has crept earlier and earlier to around or before 8, and since I started the Log have documented a waking time between 7 and 7:40 a.m. every day. So Weissbluth says that the optimal nap times are around 9 a.m. and 1 p.m., with an optional additional nap around 5 or 6, and bedtime should be around 7.

So we're adding that to the mix, as of last night. We had mixed results: she went down easy at 7:30, but was up again at 8, 9:30, and 10:30. Then she gave us a break until 1. And another break until 3:30. But from then until about 5:30 she was just up and down and up and down. She fell asleep at 5:30 and woke up at 7:00. I got up with her, but she looked soooooo tired! Her eyelids were puffy and heavy, and she kept yawning. Nonetheless, I kept her up until 9 and she went to sleep again at 9:30. Unfortunately it was only a half-hour nap, which Weissbluth says doesn't count.

So here's my big dilemma - nursing to sleep, yes or no? Weissbluth says it's no problem, but you should follow up by leaving them in their cribs for the allotted nap time regardless of whether they wake up and cry or not. Hogg says don't do it, but do go in and pick up/comfort/reassure/put down. Pantley says it's ok, but break the latch right before they're asleep. I've been trying to do Pantley's thing but it really doesn't work for us.

Anyway, I made a nice chart of her sleeping and napping times (see below). While it doesn't reflect her night waking patterns, at least I can see that her nap times have been very irregular. We are going to try to establish more regularity there, but if in 3 days it doesn't at least ameliorate the night waking issue, we may have to try more drastic measures. I really can't go on like this.

1 comment:

Caro said...

No advice sorry, but I feel for you. I tend to nurse to sleep but we've been very lucky and haven't had too many sleep issues.