Tuesday, June 19, 2012

part time co-sleeper (a rambling)

well let's just say that Max's sleep this month has turned a 180! BUT, i've taken it like a grown adult and posting not just to beef, but to reflect and chronicle these new changes.

Max has gone from napping 45 minutes, to 30 minutes 3-4x a day.  On average, his awake window is still 2 hours, but lately, he's been staying up 3-4 hours especially in the evening. UNCOOL, as he becomes Mr. Grumpy nearing the 7pm mark and this is the time when my parents can come over to visit him!

Furthermore, he doesn't even sleep long in the carseat anymore. yes, motion will definitely lull him to sleep, but once motion stops...eyes are big and bright! i remember those days at the mall when he would sleep for 3 hours in the car seat as i strolled around. so sweet and peaceful. not anymore, either motion stops or the 30 minute mark has come- whichever is first, he wakes up. can i say UNCOOL again?

To extend his first nap, I've changed my entire day routine from staying up during his first nap to eat, catch up on emails, watch breakfast television, and just to whatever i can in the time he's asleep to just going to bed with him. All sleeps start off in the crib when at home, and if he can lull himself back to sleep in the crib, awesome, but this doesn't happen that often. so in the morning, he's in the crib, and I'm in the twin bed in the same room. when he wakes up, i wait about 5-10 minutes to see what the follow through is. if he escalates, i pick him up and he sleeps beside me.  Instantly, the crying/whimpering stops, he might squirm a little, but the volume of his vocals significantly decreases, he turns his head towards me, and he closes his eyes.  I love these times!  HE ALWAYS SLEEPS! Despite the fact that i'm pretty hungry, i either stay there and lie awake or lightly go back to sleep.  we wake up around 1030-11am. This clocks in about a 2 hr first nap...im super happy with this.!

Max's night sleep is like a roulette table, seriously you just don't know what the night will be like.  i feed him quite often during the day to load up on the calories, i maintain his night routines and bed time, the room temp is ideal, he's bathed and smells great. Some nights he sleeps well, and some nights, UGH! I've stopped dream feeding him and basically won't wake a sleeping baby anymore unless i have to. he's pretty chubs, he's got a lot of reserves! Anyhow, i wait until he wakes up, and if he does...a couple minutes of squirming to see what he will do with himself but not to the point of escalation, and then i feed him. Sometimes, he just goes right back to sleep.  More nights than i would like, he wakes up multiple times at odd times (i.e.. 2 hrs after going down for sleep) and crying. I wait a few minutes like always, then feed, and put back to bed. at this time, I'm literally praying he goes back to sleep! haha. anyways, if he doesn't i do what i do with naps and I bring him with me and we sleep together.

just awesome as how he is instantly comforted when beside me. he's a bit of a restless sleeper though like he scratches my face or hits my face, lifts his legs up in the air and slams them on the mattress (I've discovered this is a soothing technique), and sometimes cries in his sleep.

3) SLEEP Positions

i can't say i have an AMAZING sleep 100% of the time whenever he sleeps beside me.  initially, i face him, have my arm around him, and  have my eyes partially opened so i can see what he's doing. i love seeing him turn his head side to side (a soothing technique), look at me, smile, shut his eyes, and smiles again even more (maybe it's reflex smiles? LOVE!). i've noticed for him to settle even faster, our faces our literally 2inches apart from each other, nose to nose. when he's extra restless, i put my head on his shoulder and he briefly turns his head side to side again, but i guess my smell lulls him to sleep as it doesn't take long for him to settle.  our breaths don't synchronize but they're definitely calm and relaxing. Ive also noticed that he has to touch me at various times throughout the night (so sweet).  i have yet to take this practice to the master bedroom on our king bed, perhaps this month!

4) Support

in my search for "is what i'm doing ok?", i asked Mama in the CIty of her experience as she's done this before. I always find her answers supportive and reassuring (thank you!).

I searched further on the net and came across this website on part time co-sleeping on attachmentparenting.org - I can totally relate to this website log!

I also LOVE Dr. Sears' article on co-sleeping co-sleeping: yes, no sometimes?  it describes Max and I's sleep positions so well (aka, less rambling like i have done) as well as our experience.

***There's still that SIDS issue that keeps lingering in my head. Also, i haven't exactly boasted about this to my parents yet who may not understand...especially after watching a show about that mom who's being charged for murder after both her babies died while co-sleeping! READ up on Vanessa Clark.

I'm happy and feeling no guilt. Max is sleeping and seems happy. Getting there!

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