Dumplin’: Sleep Training Day 4 

  
Lots of good learning happening in the Mama et Maman household! Dumplin’ fussed (no screaming or real crying) intermittently for only 12 minutes last night. I took the dogs out for an evening walk as DW put the little man to bed, and when I came home, all was calm and quiet. Apparently, right at around the 11-12 minute mark, DW watched Dumplin’ turn off his aquarium on the baby monitor! At around 2:45am, I heard him fuss, and went in to nurse him. After we were done, I went back to our bedroom and watched him on the baby monitor as he was waving his left arm in the direction of the aquarium repeatedly until he turned it on again! He then watched the aquarium as the music played, the lights flickered, the water bubbled, and the fishes danced. He soon fell back asleep and didn’t wake until 8am. That’s almost 5 hours! I’m so proud of our sweet boy for staying positive as we encourage him to self-soothe and look within for comfort.

Here are our stats from last night:

Sleep Training Day 4:

7:30 pm start

Only intermittent fussing, hit the aquarium to turn it off right before falling asleep

Sleep wave in minutes: 12 

Total time until sleep: 12 minutes

Feedings: 10pm, 1:20am, 2:45am (fussed before, and afterwards- turned on his aquarium on his own)

Wake-up: 8am

Now, I’ve had a couple of questions about what a “Sleep Wave” is, and I’m sorry that I haven’t explained it until now. It’s a term used to describe the check-ins that form the basis of the sleep training method described in The Happy Sleeper book. After putting babies down for the night, if they cry, you start timing and check in on them once every 5 minutes of continuous crying. Each cycle of (cry for 5 minutes–>check-in) is called a Sleep Wave. Now, we didn’t time our Sleep Waves the same way as the book recommends though, since Dumplin’ seemed to become more upset each time we went in, which made us think that maybe he needed more than 5 minutes to switch from looking to us to soothe him to looking inward for soothing, so we went with gradual check-ins, where the time you wait between check-ins increases. There are a bunch of different sets of times recommended by different sleep training methods. So technically, we weren’t doing the 5-minute Sleep Waves as prescribed by The Happy Sleeper, but I liked using the term because it nicely described how many “rounds” of checking-in we had to do.

Here’s a cute photo of our sweet and happy little boy, wearing his new ear muffs!

  

Dumplin’: Sleep Training Day 3

Last night went much better than the first two nights (which weren’t even that bad). I hope that we’re turning a corner here. He fussed minimally about 3 hours after each nursing session though, which might have been his way of telling us he’s hungry. At 5 months old, I thought he’d be able to last longer than 3 hours, but seeing as how he’s had an all-you-can-eat nighttime nursing buffet since birth, I accommodated his requests. I hope that he naturally starts to nurse more during the day though, and/or goes a little longer between feedings at night so that I can get a good chunk of continuous sleep. Right now, I’m sleeping in 2 hour increments due to these nursing sessions, and I’m soooo tired. I estimate that I only got about 6 hours of sleep altogether last night. This is less sleep than I was getting when we were bedsharing, and I hope that we find a way for me to get more sleep again. Waking up to feed him, then going back to bed and waiting to see how he settles just takes so long. Hopefully, with time, I can do the nursing sessions and fall back asleep quickly. 

Here are my notes from last night:

Sleep Training Day 3:

7:25pm start

Crying started right away

Sleep wave in minutes: 11, 14

Total time until sleep: 25 minutes

Feedings: 10pm, 2am (fussed, and required a sleep wave before), 5am (fussed, and required a sleep wave before)

Wake-up: 8am

Also funny was that at the 5am fussing, Dumplin’ had learned how to turn on his aquarium! I turned on the baby monitor and noticed that the lights were going and watched him repeatedly hit the on/off button at the front of it! 

  
The aquarium: