Before I had my son, I had a friend who would talk about cuddling in bed all night with her son, I swore I would NEVER do that. My bed wasn’t the place my future children would be taking over, and I didn’t want to start that “terrible habit”.
Well… fast forward a few months, an emergency c-section, and a week long NICU stay, there my son is, in my bed with me. (we will get into all that in another post)
When you are starting out with breastfeeding, you spend hours upon hours cluster feeding (please don’t give up, it gets better!), you become exhausted, you start falling asleep in the chair, and you are terrified you will drop your precious new baby. That lead us to feeding side-lying in bed, which lead to us sleeping that way.
Jax (my son) would only sleep a max of 3 hours. He slept an average of 1.5 hours, and then he would be squirming again for me to feed him. I would roll over, plop a boob in his mouth and back to sleep we drift off for another 45 minutes or so. This went on for 6 months! I wanted to try and put him into his crib, but how would I have the energy to go to his room every few hours throughout the night, instead of just rolling over to feed him? Then one day I decided, I can’t do this anymore, I can’t survive on 5ish hours of broken up sleep per night, it was time to try and get him in his crib.
I read so many sleep training tips online, cry it out, don’t nurse to sleep, put them down tired, pick up put down, pat the bum, set a routine, and on and on it went. I tried everything! I could not get this kid to sleep in his crib.
I decided to just do what worked for us! Which is me nursing him to sleep, and then gently placing him in his crib. Some nights we would do this 3 times and it would take 2 hours. But guess what!? He slept, he slept for 12 hours straight! He slept for 12 hours straight night after night, after night! It turns out, he doesn’t wake up every 45 minutes to 3 hours to eat because he’s hungry. It seems to me like he could sense me there (or smell my milk), and he just constantly woke and wanted to nurse.
As soon as he was in his crib I felt like a whole new person! Like myself again! I got to sleep, well mostly sleep. I was constantly checking on him to make sure he was still alive. After all I didn’t know he could sleep more than a few hours at a time.
I miss him so much, I desperately wish we could co-sleep. But it just doesn’t work for us, we both don’t sleep. Maybe one day things will change, and we will have the chance to do it again. But until then, I will enjoy sharing my brand new king size bed with my first baby, my Pit Bull Delilah.
Moral of the story is, don’t listen to everyone on the internet (except me, of course :p). Try different methods, and find what works for YOU. And lastly, enjoy your time with your baby, don’t let other tell you what is best for you,or your baby!