I'll sleep with I'm dead...

Gracyn has never been what I consider a great sleeper. She started off strong - sleeping "through the night" from about 2-4 months. Then she started teething. And then she didn't stop teething until she was 19 months old when her last 2-year molar popped through.

Throw in some normal sleep regressions (4 months, 8/9/10 months, 18 months...) and we've had some nights where we've been up every hour, I start crying right along with the baby because I'm desperate for her to go back to bed, and poor Justin is begging for morning so he can hightail it out of crazy town and go to work.

By the way, why doesn't anyone warn you about sleep regressions? I mean, seriously. If someone would have told me that G's sleep was gonna go to hell (or stay equally hellish) around 18 months, I could have at least prepared myself a little bit. And apparently the 18-month sleep regression is the worst one so that's awesome.

She is now going on 20 months and she we are still not sleeping well. The other night, I had a full-on meltdown (pregnancy hormones, much?) and told Justin that we are so screwed once December comes and we have TWO babies that don't sleep.

On Friday night, we got Gracyn to bed around 8:30 pm. During the week, she's normally in bed between 7:30 and 8pm; on the weekends she might be up a little later but normally she sleeps a little later too since we don't have to get up and head out the door like we do on the weekdays. Our night went like this:

8:30 PM

G's in bed. She whines a little, fights sleep, but eventually calms down.

12:45 AM

She's awake. We wait a little to see if she'll calm down. She starts to fall back asleep and Rufus starts barking. He is almost murdered and the baby starts crying again, hysterically. I go in, rock her a little bit and put her back into bed.

3:30 AM

She's awake. Again. After 15 minutes, Justin goes in. She freaks - only wants mama. Justin is able to get her to relax and he rocks with her for a good 15 minutes. She falls back asleep in his arms but wakes up the second he puts her down in the crib.

She starts crying. Again. We wait 20 minutes this time and she's still losing her shit. I'm crying because I'm so 'effing tired (growing a baby is hard; it's even harder when you don't get to sleep like a normal person) and Justin says we need to "stay strong" so she learns to go back to sleep on her own.

4:45 AM

We've all been awake for over an hour now. I wave my white flag and bring her into our bed, which she thinks means its time to party.

5:05 AM

Gracyn finds a comfortable spot in the small of my back and falls asleep. I don't dare move - that would risk waking sleeping beauty - so I try to fall asleep with two feet (make that 4 feet) kicking me in my kidneys the rest of the night.

6:55 AM

Gracyn is awake for the day. Yay.

The next morning, I begged for help on Facebook and drove to the library to check out self-help books on getting your toddler to develop healthy sleeping habits. My wonderful friends offered up some good advice, I skimmed the chapters in the books that related to our "situation" only to come away with contradicting information (like everything else related to parenting and kids) and we tried to develop a new game plan.

We started our bedtime routine (dinner, bath, books, bed) at 6:30 to make sure we were up reading books by 7 PM. We made sure to be out of her room by 7:15 in hopes that if she started crying she'd calm down and be falling asleep by 7:30 PM.

The sleeping gods intervened because on Saturday night, she went to sleep at 7:30 PM and she slept. All. Night. Long.

It was glorious.

Even more miraculous, she did it again last night. The earlier bedtime might be what she needed - it's crazy to think that making such a small change would make a such a big difference but I've heard and read that it could do the trick. Or (most likely) this is a complete fluke and she'll be back to waking up like a newborn tonight. It's 8:40 PM and so far so good. Either way, I'll take the 2 good nights and pray our winning streak continues.

Until she turns two, that is. I guess there's another developmental sleep regression on our horizon. Right about the time we bring an actual newborn home from the hospital.

The upside? I'll be able to have a stiff drink (and all the caffeine in the world) to get me through the inevitable sleepless nights...


1 comment

  1. How is the sleeping going a few days later? Hopefully G let you sleep for your BIRTHDAY! (If she didn't, she just wanted to party early with you, obv!)