Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The Sound of Silence

It has been five months since I wrote Sleepless in Seattle, describing the sleep challenges that we [Baby, Mom and Dad] were having. April seems like ages ago and, in the life of my nearly one-year-old baby, it was. May and early June were huge challenges. He was waking several times between 9:00 PM and 6:00 AM. July was tough too. During those three months we were traveling a lot, we hosted guests on several occasions, and the little man got sick a couple of times to boot.

By mid-July [around nine months old] he started sleeping through the night. We traveled to the East Coast and during that trip he actually began to sleep pretty decently. When we returned home, it took him a few days to transition back to Pacific Time, but even that process went pretty smoothly.

Here are some of the things that helped us [all three of us] get through these last five months:

· The transitional object a.k.a. lovey [Nicholas' is a tiny square piece of fleece with knotted fringe edges] stays in the crib. It's there when we put him down and we put it in his arms if he doesn't grab it right away. Otherwise, we were misplacing it.

· We have a pacifier baby on our hands. We keep several lined up near the crib so that, if he starts fussing in the middle of the night, we can just stagger into the nursery and hand him a pacifier. This saves us the hassle of searching for it and keeps two of us [the baby and the sleep walking adult] from getting too wound up.

· When we travel or have guests stay at our house, we recognize that our little one doesn't respond easily to his night time routine so we take a little more time to hold him before he is put in his crib. It feels like a small step backward but it helps him unwind and relax.

Now with his twelve-month birthday around his corner, I'm waiting for the sleep disruptions to occur for the two weeks before and two weeks after his birthday. As usual, we'll see.

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