Thursday, November 08, 2007

Sleep Baby Sleep

Estelle is almost 6 months old now; the age at which I planned to start getting her into her own bed and sleeping through the night. I didn't mind the co-sleeping while she was younger because she nutritionally needed to eat at night and it was so much easier for me to nurse her with her right there in bed with me. But now she's old enough not to need to eat at night and so I'm gonna start the switch. My plan is to first train her to fall asleep unaided at naptimes using the ferber method... letting her cry for 5 minutes before reassuring her, then 10 minutes and reassurance, then 15 minutes and reassurance... and so forth until she falls asleep. The idea is not to pick her up because that will train her that if she cries long enough she'll get what she wants. I will be keeping a journal/log of the process and we'll see how long it takes before she's sleeping through the night in her own bed. I do not expect it to be easy or fun, but it must be done.

Day 1:

Mid-day Nap
11:41 About 20 minutes after she ate, I put Estelle down for her nap, awake. Crying immediately insued.
11:46 I patted her on her back. Gently told her I love her. Kissed her head and left the room. She started crying the moment I left.
11:56 Now she's whimpering and hiccoughing from her sobs. I again, assured her I love her and patted her back before leaving the room again. This time, she paused a minute before resuming her crying.
12:16 It's only been ten minutes and she's quiet. I peeked in on her. Still whimpering and apparently awake, but her eyes are closed. I hear the occasional whine as I sneak out unnoticed.
12:20 She's awake and happily cooing at the teddy bears on her mobile. So much for sleep.