Sleep Training

Every new mother and even mommy experts worry when expecting if their little one will be a nightmare when it’s time for bed. I, myself had those worries. I heard some horror stories of babies crying all night. Thankfully, I must’ve did something good in this world because I was blessed with such an easy baby. I’m not even exaggerating! Everyone always compliments Ziana on how good, happy and what a quiet baby she is. I just think it’s a trick to make me think that all my babies will be this wonderful so I birth more!

The first month after her birth was the hardest. While you’re pregnant sleep all you can! It’s not a lie what they tell you. I never knew what exhaustion was until I had to get up every 1.5 to 2 hours to feed her and at that time I was breast-feeding. I would give Ziana about 30-45 minutes on each boob then have to wait about 25 minutes to change her diaper– all that calculates up to an hour and 40 minutes or so (depending on whether its 30 or 45 minutes). After that long month of hell on earth was over some how Ziana was able to just fall asleep on her own for HOURS! Yes, hours.

How did I do it? Simple answer could be she was born that way or just that I never allowed for Ziana to continuously fall asleep in my arms or while eating as many mothers do. One rule my boyfriend and I had was that she was not going to be spoiled by always being held or running to her for every sound she made. Of course I wanted to be close to her and hold her all the time, but I knew in the long short run she would just make my life miserable with constant attention.

After she ate I burped her and laid her down on her own to explore the wonderful world around her. Babies need “me-time” too! They need time to see things on their own, move around alone, babble to themselves and hear themselves. Don’t think you’re neglecting your child by leaving them alone to do this. I had thought this too, but it’s crucial in their development.

After about 25 minutes from when Ziana finished her bottle I would change her diaper to give her bladder enough time to get full and release. Then I would play with her– have “mommy and baby time.” From birth-3 months a baby still need a lot of sleep so after about an hour and 30 minutes I put her down to sleep again. What soothes Ziana is her bobo aka pacifier. Not something I was crazy for, but it soothes her. Voila! I had a sleeping baby. This wasn’t the case all the time. Once in a while she wouldn’t go to sleep during the day so I would have to hold her until she knocked out a bit and then put her in her crib. If I had her sleep on me I would put her in her crib soon after– sometimes she’d open her eyes and continue sleeping or wake up whimpering a bit.

I remember one morning having put Ziana down at about 9PM and waking up at 10AM the next day scared because she hadn’t woken up. Why hasn’t she woken me up!? I rushed to her crib and checked her breathing– Ziana was breathing, mouth open and sleeping, haha.

There’s so many books and methods out there to sleep train your baby which some may work, but I think a major rule in every parents life should be not to spoil your child by always holding them and running to their side when they whimper. Babies are smart and are attention-manaics! They need to learn that everything won’t be given to them when and how they want it (this was after three months). They are never too young to learn a lesson on how not to be a brat. That’s what I believe, not saying this is the right way.

When it’s time for bedtime sometimes Ziana falls right asleep and other times she’s up rolling around and fussing, but I give her time to fall asleep on her own which she eventually does. It’s a different story if she’s crying like something is hurting her. I simply check on her with the lights turned off and just a night-light on. I’ll put the bobo back in her mouth and she’s fine– maybe even rub her back for a minute. That’s all.

There’s been two nights so far that Ziana would just bang her head on the mattress, cry Bloody Mary and kick when I put her down for bedtime. I on a whim went to go fill a bottle up with some water (4 oz.) and gave it to her to calm her down. Ziana took her bottle and started drinking it. She eventually knocked out not even having drank the 4 oz. I wasn’t told this, I just figured it out and luckily it worked.

Now that’s the way I put her to sleep. You may want to try some things I’ve done and put your own mix to it.

Interestingly enough my sister-in-law, had emailed me an article two days ago “Sleep Training: It’s a First World Problem” basically putting to rest all the crap people, myself including, say about spoiling your baby. Like i said, I believe when you give your child 100% attention it’s going to bite you in butt, but this article points out that so many cultures out there do the exact thing we call “spoiling” and their children grow up to be just fine. Western culture complicates everything and we always dissect the simplest of things to make it mean more than it is, haha.

There’s no right or wrong way to do this. You’ll learn on your own how YOUR child needs to be “trained.” You’ll even think of tricks on your own like how I have. It’s fun to think of how to trick your child, so have some fun with it, haha.

Ziana likes to feel smothered when sleeping, haha

From the start Ziana was sleeping on her stomach. Perhaps that helped in her “sleep training” somehow.

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