OK, I Shoulda Done this a Long Time Ago (How I Taught My 11-Month-Old to (mostly) Sleep Through the Night)

For months, I struggled to get Wyatt to bed. And he’d wake up, and I’d struggle again. I’d try to nurse him chock full so that he’d sleep a long time, but all I managed to do was persuade him that if he woke up, I’d fill that belly again.

I’d known for weeks, if not months again, that it was time to act. But I also knew that that wasn’t going to be easy–as in, I wasn’t going to get much sleep those nights, either. Lily was (and is) going through the big girl bed night walking stage, so that we couldn’t even trade off coping with the Wy–and I just couldn’t bring myself to voluntarily accept less sleep on any given night.

But he got tougher and tougher. He went from wanting to doze off nursing to wanting to be totally asleep to wanting to sleep that way, and I couldn’t cope. So one night, in what was honestly a fit of exasperation, I refused. I fed him, laid down in the bed in his room next to him, and let him holler.

Boy, did he holler. Three hours. After about an hour and a half, he’d fall asleep for ten minutes, then wake up screaming again, and that went on until morning, when I nursed him again. And having done that, I decided I wasn’t going to look back.

The next night wasn’t much better. By the third night I was so exhausted that I took the whole thing one step further and refused to nurse him to sleep at the beginning of the night. I nursed him, popped him into his crib, kissed him and walked out on his little howling self.

I felt horrible. But if I’d stayed in there another minute I would have started screaming myself. I turned off the monitor and lay down on the bed. I could hear him, still, just enough, and I would have given in…but the phone rang. And by the time I’d even said the quickest, politiest things to the caller–say, 5 minutes total–he stopped. And that night, he howled a lot less.

The net night he slept through the night, and his fate was sealed–nothing could stop me now.

I’d say it took another week for him to wholly accpet going into his crib awake, maybe even a week and a half, but he never fussed for more than a few minutes. I started calling it the token protest. I turned nights over to my husband, and without even the prospect of a nice drink of mile in sight he went back to sleep faster. Now we won’t even take him out of the crib–a hug, a go back to sleep, and that’s it. Every time he cries, we go in, but we won’t stay.

And tonight, as I sat there and had a nice, relaxing, cozy last nurse with hi, I suddenly realized–neither of us was tense. He wasn’t trying to fight off sleep. I wasn’t dreadig trying to slip him into his crib without waking him. We were both happier. So I stayed for an extra minute or two, gave him a nice loud kiss good night, and tucked him in. He just snuggled into his fish pillow and went to sleep. We may see him in the night, or we may not, but I feel like a new person.

So by rights I should be kicking myself for not doing this a lot sooner. But you know what? I wasn’t ready a lot sooner. This is how we did it, and it sure feels good now.alaska bad credit loan carloan 20 finance calculator autoloan 1000 paydayameriloanloans student aesbad credit for 5000 loansacr auto loan401k loansloans adoptionhome alaska loans1000 credit cheats vmkaccc professionals counciling creditcredit union community allegentcirriculums accredited homeschoolfor in accreditation massachusetts dieticianeducation pro-life accreditedallegis credit union mialltel screwed my credit Map

349 Responses to “OK, I Shoulda Done this a Long Time Ago (How I Taught My 11-Month-Old to (mostly) Sleep Through the Night)”

  1. Manic Mom says:

    Hey! You are back to blogging! I didn’t understand your comment over at Manic’s about fellow writers quoting–OH, the Glamour thing! Now I get it!

  2. chelle says:

    It is amazing how it all works out in the end. Your right sooner would not have been right, you the right thing at the right time … I so adore it when it finally clicks and all the tension is gone!

  3. mrsmogul says:

    Oh how we would love to do this method but my husband needs to be alert in the morning! I did hear it can take two weeks and that it works. Sigh for now he sleeps with us!