PLEASE Go to Sleep: Month 9 Struggles

It seems like every time we get Avery into a sleeping groove and he finally starts sleeping through the night – BAM! We are hit with something new that throws him off and we are back to middle of the night feedings.

Within the past months we instituted some ‘tools’ that we used to help Avery sleep better. Here’s a look at his nightly routine that we keep consistent to help him sleep better….

Nightly Routine:

5PM: Dinner

5:30PM: Bath

5:45-6:30PM: Playtime (AKA wear him out!  Take him for a walk, go to the park, play inside)

6:30-6:45PM: Quiet Time & read books

7PM: Bottle & Bed

We put Avery down asleep and after fussing sometimes for a few minutes and checking on him once or twice, he fell asleep.  When we check on him we never pick him up, just lay him down with his bunny and pacifier and pat/rub him for a minute.

This was all well and good until this past weekend.  He went down at 7PM, but woke up and proceeded to cry, even after we kept checking on him, until 10PM!!!  We tried everything until he finally passed out.  He was up again in the middle of the night for a bottle.  This has continued for this week, but has improved.  Took 2 hours Monday night, and hour Tuesday, 45 minutes Wednesday, and last night just 15 minutes.

So, even though we have an arsenal of ‘tools’ and a routine that we stick to, Avery just decides to switch things up right when he’s ready to fall asleep well and sleep through the night.  So what was it this time?  Well, in California, Avery took his Army crawl and advanced into full-fledged crawling, and began pulling up on everything!  So when Avery was having a rough time going down this week, we realized it was because now he can do this…

(no worries. no babies were disturbed in the middle of the night for these pictures.  I had our Model, Avery, reenact our nightly adventures during awake hours)

We realized that Avery’s mobility was what was making bedtime so much harder now.  Well, we lowered his crib so he wouldn’t be climbing out in the middle of the night (yet!) and we’ve been giving him some tough love and letting him cry a bit before we check on him (3min, 5 min, 7 min, 10 min intervals).  It seems to be working, but he’s still waking in the middle of the night to eat and seems to want to wake up much earlier (530AM instead of 6AM).

Oh well, he’s just keeping us on our toes!

More pictures AND VIDEOS of Avery’s new moves: CRAWLING! …coming tomorrow!

How does/did your baby sleep?  Were there stages, do you have any tricks to share?  Our next step is to get him out of that nightly feeding (again). 

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25 thoughts on “PLEASE Go to Sleep: Month 9 Struggles

  1. Meghan, please rethink the bumper in the crib because some kids are prone to getting leverage via climbing on it and getting a boost out of bed. Also, it might be a good idea to keep a comforter or something padded next to he crib, on the floor because even if he got out accidentally, there’ll be lesser chances of him hurting himself.
    Best of luck with the sleep. Some kids constantly keep their parents guessing :o)

  2. Oh man, don’t you love how they’re always throwing you for a loop just when you think you’ve gotten them figured out?! Annabel has been consistently sleeping through the night for several months now (since she was 5 months), but occasionally something throws her off, like an ear infection or teething and she’ll wake up randomly one night.

    So she does great once she’s asleep, but we’re still working on having a smoother routine for getting her down at night and during naps! I think we’re FINALLY making some progress, so we might be getting close to her being able to put herself to sleep. That would be awesome. I’ve let her cry it out a few times, but it doesn’t work so well once they can stand like that. Plus I hate to hear her scream, so I mostly rock her to sleep. I know we’ll get to a point when I don’t have to do that, so I try to remind myself of that and just enjoy the sweet cuddle times now.

    I wish I had some tips for you, but we’re just learning as we go too! He’ll get there. And then you’ll wonder how you ever did this for so long! 🙂 Good luck!

    • Wow, she’s a good sleeper! Avery should take some tips from Annabel! We’ll figure it out someday, but you’re right. We gotta enjoy the rocking and cuddling while we can because they grow up so fast. I can’t believe my mom is already talking about throwing Avery’s 1st Birthday Party. Only 3 1/2 months away!

      • She’s great once she goes to sleep! Haha, it’s just getting there that can be the challenge. How long are Avery’s naps? Annabel will not nap for longer than an hour and 15 minutes, but usually it’s in the 45min-1hr range. Definitely not ideal!

      • That makes me feel much better! Annabel’s naps are usually right at an hour (two per day), but it seems like they should be longer than that. At her 9 month check up, the doctor said at her age she should be sleeping 14-16 hrs a day. Right now she does 11 hrs at night, then two hour long naps a day, so a total of 13 hrs. I wish I could get those naps longer! Grrr, this sleep business is so difficult! Glad I’m not the only one struggling with it:)

  3. I’ve kept this post in my inbox because I’ve wanted to comment on it for sooooo long! So here goes….

    Jude is doing the same thing at 7 months, so I feel for you. He was a better sleeper when he came home from the hospital than he is now and I feel as if I may go bat crazy sometimes. One day out of the blue, he started booking it crawling across the living room floor ditching his army crawl and then a couple mornings later I walk in to the nursery because I hear “thumping” and he’s standing there grinning at me from the crib!

    His schedule looks a lot like Avery’s, except our night routine is (on average) an hour later give or take depending on our work schedules that night (Jason and I work until 7/8p some nights). Jude usually wakes up around 11p, 2a, and then up for the day around 5/6a. I’ll cross my fingers if you cross yours for me. Haha. 😉

    • Well, I feel much better knowing I’m not the only one stumping in the dark of the wee morning hours 🙂 Are you still feeding Jude in the middle of the night when he wakes up? Avery won’t go back to sleep unless he has a bottle in the middle of the night. We got him out of it but in the past 2-3 weeks he’s back into it. We’ve started extending his bedtime to 715/30ish instead of 7. He seems to have more energy now (as if that was possible!) so we try to wear him out a little more before putting him down. Otherwise he’s up in his crib screaming for a while before falling asleep.

      • This is going to sound counter-productive, but you might try putting him to bed earlier instead of later. I’ve read this many, many times and it’s always true for Annabel. The earlier she goes to bed, the later (and better!) she sleeps. I’ve read that when they get over-tired, they sleep less and not as well.

        What time does he wake up in the morning? It might be a case of him not getting enough sleep. I don’t know just a thought and something that I’ve read and noticed to be true for Annabel!

      • Thanks for the suggestion. We tried this last night and it kind-of worked. We put him down at 630PM. He woke up at 830 a couple times and wouldn’t fall back asleep so I cuddled and rocked him for a bit. Then he woke up at midnight for a bottle…then again around 3 for another bottle, then he woke up for the day at 530AM. We will try again tonight…. 🙂

  4. I’m always thinking about the nighttime routine and how to get them to sleep through the night. Seems like a difficult task! A friend of mine had her daughter sleeping through the night at a month and a half! I think she was just lucky! Anyway, keep up the good work. I’m sure your patience will be rewarded one day. 🙂

  5. Hi,

    We have had lots of trouble with getting Elisabeth to sleep through the night, took us until she was 14 months before we were finally getting some sleep. Have you tried moving his bath time to just before he goes to bed? It might make him a bit sleepy. Also a book/method I would really recommend is: Good night, sleep tight by Kim West. This is what we used and it is brilliant! It’s hard to start with, but it really works and what I really like about this method is that you stay with them until they’re asleep (during the initial sleep training period), you don’t leave the room when they are crying. You have to stick to the method religiously for it to work but it is so worth it. Good luck!

    • Thanks for the advice! We originally had Avery’s bath time right before bed, but it seemed to excite him too much. He splashes and plays with toys… so we moved it earlier. We do the book routine – and that book sounds like something that we should try. He’s been going down to sleep better the past few nights – he just keeps waking in the middle of the night and we can’t break him of that 😦

      • Do you feed him when he wakes up? If you do it is likely that he’ll keep doing it. I was convinced Elisabeth was truly hungry when she woke up in the middle of the night, she wasn’t really…….I would definately recommend getting the book, stick to it and he’ll be sleeping away before you know it.

      • Thanks for the advice 🙂 How did you get Elisabeth out of the middle of the night feedings? When Avery wakes up, he screams and screams and stands up in his crib until you feed him.

  6. You’re not going to like this answer, the only thing you can do is not feed him. I know it sounds harsh but if he is eating well during the day and putting on weight fine then he doesn’t need night feeds. I would recommend follow a sleep training book or other guide though to give you some support. It is very hard, Elisabeth cried for a full hour the first night and then took another hour and a bit to go to sleep which meant I sat next to her for over two hours at 2 in the morning, probably the hardest thing I have ever done, but it works. The second night she cried about half an hour and after that it was much much shorter. Just make sure that if you do start withsomething like this that you’re consistent, otherwise if you give in and feed him one night it will only get harder for both of you. Let me know how you get on.

    • OK – Sounds like a plan. I wanted to do that, but it does feel harsh. He eats well, and can last through the night… it’s just that when he wakes up at night now, he stands in his crib and gets more awake. I try putting him back down but he gets right back up (all the while screaming). I’ll try it this weekend and see how it goes. That way the lost sleep in the middle of the night won’t be as rough on me 🙂

      • I know it does, it took me ages to be mentally ready for it. It will be really hard the first couple of nights. When he cries, try to sit with him in his room make comforting sshhhh sshhhh sounds but don’t pick him up, basically be in the room but give him as little attention as possible. With Elisabeth it helped if we pretended to be asleep. Good luck x

      • I didn’t try much new… I didn’t get any extra sleep over the weekend so I was drained and couldn’t stay up with him, so fri & sat nights when he woke up, I gave him 1/2 a tyical bottle size. Don’t know if that did something because last night he slept 7-530 🙂

  7. Good luck, be strong and let me know how it goes. It helps to keep a log of what time he wakes up, how long he cries and what time he goes back to sleep, just so you can see progress because you’ll be so tired for a few days you won’t remember.

  8. Pingback: Just Another Sleep Journey « Being Mummy

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