My words, specifically.
Remember when I said that this motherhood thing was all feeling very natural, and that I didn’t feel the need to read all of those routine/sleep training books? Well as it turns out, I was very wrong. I’m pretty sure that Miles wasn’t getting enough sleep because I wasn’t really working on giving him naps…when he fell asleep, he fell asleep. His naps were very short and irregular. He was getting rather fussy. I kept telling Chris that he as a great baby, but just not at times when Chris was home. But really, I think he was exhausted.
First I read On Becoming Babywise because it had been recommended by several people that I know and trust. This is what helped me to realize that he was probably tired. So I started to put him down more regularly for naps, stretching his feeding times from 2 hours to 3. For two days, it worked fabulously. He would cry for about ten minutes, I would go put the binky back in his mouth, and he would fall asleep. He was sleeping for much longer, too. We were amazed.
Then it stopped working.
Then I read parts of Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child because it came recommended by several people that I know and trust, including our pediatrician. It said a lot of the same things as Babywise, but also talked about this scary thing called “Extinction.” For those of you not in-the-know, this is when you don’t respond to baby’s crying (when you know it isn’t something like needing to be nursed, burped, or changed). But the book is really long. I don’t have time for really long books, so I’m not sure I was getting all of the information. Am I supposed to be using extinction for naps or just for night waking? Am I supposed to start sleep-training now or when he is older? Am I supposed to comfort him and rock him to sleep or am I supposed to let him figure it out.
I was feeling rather overwhelmed.
But after two days of feeling inadequate, I came to my senses and decided to just do what works for now. I came to this realization after talking with Chris a bit about it, and after he let me go shopping sans baby one afternoon. It’s amazing what a little bit of time away can do.
And I guess it’s all worth it for this little guy. He’s trying so hard to decide if he wants to suck his thumb…and I kind of hope that he does because he can put it back in himself when it falls out.