Monday, June 13, 2011
Another area of sleeping that we have established is teaching him to put himself asleep....alone. There are plenty of times Grant or I will cuddle him and put him to sleep while we rock him or hold him close. But there are also plenty of times when we will deliberately lay him down while he is awake, giving him the opportunity to teach himself to be self-sustained. There are times when this works wonderfully...and there are times when it is difficult.
This is particularly hard when Nathan is tired but adamant about NOT sleeping. One night in particular, Grant was late coming home and so I would be putting Nathan down alone. We did our "bath, bottle, bed" routine and I laid him down when he was awake. Needless to say, he was not happy about it. I picked him up and tried to rock him to sleep. Still not happy. Still not cooperative. In this case, I felt it was time to teach him that bedtime was bedtime. I laid him in his bed, kissed him, and walked out. He cried and screamed and, from time to time, I'd go in, talk to him calmly, pull his covers back over him and leave again. I was not going to rescue him from his bed. It was time for sleep. After quite a while, he finally settled down and put himself to sleep. I have had to do this two other times but I have noticed that the amount of time he cries is less every time. It works. :)
One area of sleep training that I jumped on immediately is teaching him to sleep anywhere. Since we travel, I knew that he would have to be able to sleep in his car seat, in his bed, in people's arms, in various other mats and beds, etc. So with each nap, I would try to put him somewhere different. On the floor....in his cradle....in his crib....in my lap...etc. He has always been able to sleep in his car seat so I have never spent time putting him in there while at home. So far, I haven't had any trouble. Every baby is different, but I would recommend trying this technique to see if it works for your baby. One different place per nap. I'm not sure if my training is the reason behind it or if it is his personality and temperament, but Nathan can sleep pretty much anywhere.
Training, training. training.
So there is what I have learned so far in regards to sleep training. :) Hope it is helpful to you mommies as well!