Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Random Tuesday- More Sleep Training or How to give a Mom a Heart Attack

I was going to post a bunch of photo's of Ethan in his new shoes at the park but google won't let me upload (download?) any pics. So I'll tell you about the heart attack I almost had last night.

Eli and I have been talking about getting the boy to sleep through the night without nursing for about a week now. He has been going to sleep well but waking around midnight, again around 2 or 3 and again around 5 and up for good at 7. That's a bad night. A good night he would wake maybe twice. Each time I was able to successfully put him back to sleep by nursing him, a process that only takes 5-8 minutes or Eli would walk him around his room. I had really been struggling with my own wants of continuing to nurse him at night. After a phone call with a friend and some supportive advice I decided I was ready last night to cut out the night nursing. Eli and I agreed that we would follow our bed time routine and I would nurse him and put him down in his bed. If and when he woke we would not go in the room for at least 15 minutes. Then we (Eli) would go in, tell him it is night time, go to sleep and we love him.

Bed time comes around, I nurse him and he is still wide awake. He really goes back and forth with the bedtime nursing. Most times he falls asleep while nursing and I put him in bed asleep. Sometimes he just doesn't and I put him in bed awake. He will cry a bit and then fall asleep. Last night was one of those nights. I put him in bed awake and walked out. He cried only until I shut the door and I didn't hear anything else from him for a half an hour. At this point Eli and I were done with our dinner, our nightly dose of Deadwood (we're a little behind) and I was ready to go to bed (I'm old). I had to check on him. He has twice gotten his arm stuck in the bed rails and I had to make sure he was okay.

I stick my head in the door and can only see part of his leg. (I usually only check to make sure there are no body parts sticking out of the bars.) I take a few steps in the room and can now see he is laying on his back but can't see his face. He doesn't sleep on his back. When we moved him to his room at 7 months we found that the only way he will sleep and stay asleep is on his tummy. I had to see his face. I leaned over the bed and my baby's eyes are wide open. His mouth is a little ajar and he is not moving. My heart starts racing and I am only able to barely whisper in a squeaky voice "Ethan?". It takes him a second to register that I am suddenly right in his face. He then jumps up and starts screaming his head off. I guess I scared him, too! I quickly leave the room hoping he will lay back down to sleep(yeah, right).

I go back in the living room, almost in tears, and tell Eli of my mistake. He comforts me and sends me back to Ethan saying "We owe him some comforting because you just scared him." So I went back and picked him up, walked him around the room and he was asleep in about 5 minutes.

We were fairly successful the rest of the night. Ethan woke around midnight. Eli let him cry for about 10 minutes and then, following the plan, went in and told him to go to sleep and that he loved him. Ethan continued to cry for another 10 minutes before he fell asleep on his own. I heard him wake at 2:17am. I remember this time because I had to count 15 minutes on my fingers about 5 times in my slumber. I didn't make it to 2:32 and nether did Ethan. We were both asleep by then. Ethan then woke at 6am. We don't get up until 7am in this house. Okay, we (me) don't want to get up until 7am. So I let him cry till almost 7 and then brought him to bed with us to nurse on my extremely over full breast. Hopefully tonight goes just as well or better. The goal is to be sleeping through the night by Thursday when Mom gets here. I don't think she can handle hearing Ethan cry!

Do you check on your baby after you've put them to bed? Do you walk all the way in the room or just stick your head in? Eli seems to be more successful at not waking the boy then I am. I think he can smell my milk when I walk in the room.


Carly said...

Wow that is so scary how he was sleeping with his eyes open. My little one is just starting to sleep through the night. Good luck with that!

Brandy said...

that would be so scary. Grayson sleeps with us so I really have no advice. I know when we try to put him in his bed - we plan on the 15 minute thing,

Anonymous said...

He was probably not asleep, but just laying there like a good boy, trying to go to sleep. When you stuck your face in his face and said his name, it probably scared the dickens out of him!! I like that you are trying to get him to sleep through the night without nursing, but I would be ok with him crying!!
I always had to check on my babies at night. I still do, when they are home, even though they may not know it.

Melissa said...

I think you're right, Mom. I don't think he was asleep and I'm sure he would have been fine if I hadn't scared him! I'm not going back in tonight no matter how quiet he is. I may send Eli, though!

Vicki said...

That must have been so scary, Melissa! I know when each of mine first slept through the night, my first waking though always was, "I hope s/he's still alive!" And yes, I checked on them, sometimes with less-then-spectacular results...like waking them up. This, too, will pass. One more milestone!


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