So the first 6 months we kept Luna in our room in her bassinet co-sleeper because Dr. Sears said the risk of SIDS is lower if they sleep in the same room as the mom. That was enough to scare me, plus it was so sweet to have her so close, because there won't be another time when I can do that with her and pretty soon I won't even be able to rock her anymore :)
The move to her crib was hard, as I slept on a mattress on the floor for 1 week next to her crib to get her used to sleeping in it. She still was very hard to put down and even though the doctor said no swaddle past 4 months, we started it again at 6 months and she slept soo well with it!
But by 12am, Luna would wake up and not want to go back into the crib, and I was too tired to fight it, so I would bring her into my bed and nurse her and she would fall asleep next to me. Problem is that I did not sleep well with a baby next to me, tossing and turning all night, crying to be fed here and there. I was getting maybe 1 hour uninterrupted at a time.
After searching for an answer, and reading Healthy Sleep Habits, Solve Your Child's Sleep by Dr. Ferber and the No-Cry Sleep Method as well as Dr. Sears' Baby Sleep Book, I was convinced the Dr. Sears book was the best, but was just not working. His idea is to Co-Sleep but if you can't do that, to use the No-Cry Method which was not working. You basically get them to almost drift off to sleep but put them in the crib not asleep, have them cry, re-rock, cry, re-rock, etc and it just was not working.
It was taking us 30 minutes to put her to bed or naps and it was so hard to get her down, and she would not stay asleep for long at all. We would rock for hours and if she was not completely dead asleep when we laid her in the crib, she would awake hysterically and we would have to start all over again.
Everyone I asked said I had to have her cry it out. But I was just not ready to do that. I could not bare to have her cry for over 5 minutes as they suggested. I knew she would cry herself to sleep but I felt that it was too mean! That she would think that her cries were unanswered and that no one could hear her, and that if no one answered her, then she would not trust the environment. After all, their only way to communicate was to cry and if no one heard them, ugh, the poor thing!! PLUS, when she was 4-6 months old, her cry was so hard to hear, it was like a newborn cry and it was too much for me to hear. And, I wanted to wait until she was old enough to understand a little bit when I told her it was time to go to bed. And 4 months, she was just not there yet.
But after she turned 8 months, she was waking up more and more and by 10pm she was refusing to sleep in her crib and each night the time get earlier and earlier and I felt like she was regressing and would only sleep in my bed. So I found the Sleep Easy Solution book, which is a good straightforward approach similar to Dr. Ferber's method but written by moms and therapists.
I bought a video monitor, a soft small breathable blankie and we decided to give this approach a try.
So we finally tried it on Tuesday and she cried for 5 minutes, but was more of a mad cry, then I went in and calmed her but did not pick her up. She then cried for almost 7 minutes, but would start and stop, then Todd went in and calmed her. Then she cried for a minute, stopped for almost 6 minutes, cried for a second, stopped, etc and we NEVER had to go back into her room because she finally fell asleep!! And stayed asleep for 4 hours.
Then I went into her room and fed her while she was asleep as the book suggested, and then I fed her again at 12am and 2am while she slept. The book said to wake them before they normally do to feed so that they do not wake themselves and eventually they will stop feeding at night.
The next day, she went down with her naps sooo easily!!! She loves her blankie and soothes herself to sleep with it. We have only had to let her cry for 5 minutes here and there when she wakes up in her crib, but she quickly goes back to sleep.
I miss our snuggle mornings in my bed, so when she is fully awake in the morning, I still bring her into my bed but we play and do not go back to sleep- I don't want her to get back into that habit!!
I miss her sleeping next to me but I know it is for the best for my sleep and for her sleep. She is now taking longer naps too, because of the good sleep she is getting at night.
Long post I know, and not any pics but I just had to let everyone know how well she is sleeping!! Of course in a few years we will look back on this and it will be just a small memory, but so glad her sleep has improved!