Friday, March 7, 2008

Sleep, for the love of God, sleep!

"Right when you thought your child has a pattern, the little sucker changes it on you.".Words of wisdom from my brother before Amelia was born. And darn it, he's a wise man.
Since last Sunday, I've been trying to teach (use the word loosely here) my five month baby how to sooth herself when she wakes up, after we put her down for the night. I've been following that sleep bible by Dr. Weissbluth called "Healthy Sleeping Habits, Happy Baby". In fact, Amelia's pediatrician is in his practice, so every time she goes in for a check up, Dr. Aaron King asks about her sleeping habits and kindly suggests that we let her cry, so she can learn to self soothe. There's a whole plan in the book that many parents swear by.

I admit we have waited as long as we could to have to do this. But last Sunday, our daughter kept waking up around four in the morning and by the third time my husband put the pacifier in her mouth (or pressed her snooze button, as he likes to say), we knew it was time.
The first time I let her cry it out was during nap time. She cried for 40 minutes and slept 15. That night, after I put her down asleep, she woke up 8 minutes later and cried for 20 minutes, but then slept through the night. The second night, cried for 45 minutes and slept through the night. Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday she slept through the night. I thought we were home free. My bright baby had learned her lesson!

Yeah right, last night our little sucker woke up at 1:42 in the morning and cried for twenty minutes like we were killing her. We picked her up, afraid the neighbors would call DCFS on us. (We live in a high rise with a lot of single people) It took her father 2 hours and 4 ounces to get her to go back to sleep. She was up again at 4:30, but then she only needed her snooze button.
What the hell! Where did the pattern go? Where did all our hard work go? I thought we had gotten over the hump. I don't know if I can take the crying out all over again. And now we are going to Puerto Rico for a long weekend, so is the pattern gone forever???

I guess I have to get back on that horse. So if you are my neighbor, we are back on Tuesday, so please forgive us if you hear a screaming baby for an hour at 1AM, we are doing it for her own good. Unless you pray hard for us and hope a miracle happens and Amelia goes back to self soothing without making a peep. Yeah, right.