Tuesday, January 11, 2011

sleep schedules

It feels that all the moms in our Parent group are talking about sleep training.  How to get them to sleep, how to nap, what schedule to have them in, what routine to set at night.  For a while I began to feel like we were doing something wrong, since we didn't really have any type of "theory" behind our scheduling and sleeping patterns.  Basically, I let Cupcake decide when she's tired, and then we put her down at night at 11:30 or so to sleep with us.  And you know, its been working.  But I was getting self conscious, were we fostering bad habits?  Why was everyone else so obsessed with sleep training and we didn't care.

Then I came to a realization.  THere are two things going on here.

1.  Cupcake is an awesome baby. She's happy most of the time, she doesn't cry, she's happy to lay on her play mat staring at her toys, she smiles at people, and mostly, she has no hangups about sleeping.  When she gets tired she begins to fuss, and I rock her and usually she's out within 5 minutes.  Sometimes it takes a few tries to get her on her crib or swing, and sometimes she will only nap if she's on my arms, but whatever, she's so good the rest of the time that I can indulge her if she needs it.  I figure there's a reason why she needs to be held, and I will address it.  So we've never felt that sleeping was an issue, so we didn't bother needing to change it.

2.  Most sleep training techniques are aimed at getting the baby to sleep through the night.  All the schedules, and cluster feeds, and self soothing techniques, CIOs, etc,  have as the ultimate goal a baby that sleeps 8+ hours on their own without needing nursing or attention.  That's fine and dandy, except thanks to Cupcake's MCADD we will not be having a full night sleep anytime soon.   We have to feed her every 4 hours at night, and usually we dream feed her anyway.  So her waking up at night hungry is a non-issue, we have 'till at least 6 months before we can start adding an hour per month to her overnight stint.  Seriously, besides the day the alarms didn't go off, I haven't had more than 3.5 hours of sleep in a row.  And curiously, the body adjusts.  But it does make me feel like the odd duck when everyone else is celebrating sleep successes and commiserating over sleep training frustrations.  It would be great to meet another MCAD mom to share the experience with.  Or any other FODs really.  I'm not really sure how to go about it.

If any of you find this blog, send me a message, it'd be great to meet someone else going through something similar.

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