Posts Tagged ‘sleep’

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A few nights ago, I heard the sound that new parents fear in the middle of the night. A big bump, and then crying. Andrew climbed out of his crib in the middle of the night. I threw the covers off and ran in to find him lying on the floor, crying and shaken, but no worse for wear, at least as far as I could tell. Just about a month ago, I lowered the mattress to it’s lowest setting so climbing out would be harder for him. Obviously, it didn’t take him long to find a way to power up and over the railing. I mean, the top of the rail is still at chest height on him. I thought that would be enough. It wasn’t.

So we made the decision that we would rather deal with a new crib set-up and an altered bedtime routine (again) than have him fall out of the crib for a second time. I measured where the new rail would be, and Lydia got the old bumper rail that went on her bunk beds from her parents. I think it turned out rather well. I just need to stain it to match the color. Andrew can climb in and out and there are cushions there if he falls out. The bad part is that now he can climb out of bed and walk into our room.

We just got him used to falling asleep on his own by using the progressive waiting method. (one of the best thing we have done, by the way) Now, his routine is changed, but he won’t be falling four feet down onto hardwood floors anymore either.

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My son was up at 3:30 AM this morning. I groggily get up and change his diaper. Then I swaddle him up again and rock him to sleep for 20 minutes with a repeated “Twinkle twinkle little star.” I carefully get up and place him down in his crib on his back. Finally, he is asleep. I take two step back and a floorboard squeaks drawing instant cries from him. DANG IT! Well, our doctor says we need to “Ferberize” him so I think, why not now. He was asleep 2 seconds ago. maybe he’s tired enough to get back down with minimal interference from me. I stay in the room and sing while he cries. When he stands up and grabs the crib rail, I pick him up and put him back down. Crying continues for minutes as I keep putting him back down. I try to let him go for a few minutes by himself because the method says that one needs to increase the intervals of intervention if it’s to be successful. From 3 minutes to 5 to 7  to 10 and so on.

Brief history: Andrew has been saying the sylable Da/ or Dah (depending on your phonetic preference) for the last two weeks. However, they are always strung together like: da da da da da da. There have been a few times when he has said da da when I have been around, but never with intent or recognition, if you know what I mean. OK, back to the story.

So he’s been crying for 5 minutes and makes his way around to he end of the crib where I’m sitting in a rocking chair. I am still singing to him and he grabs my hair, trying to gum on it. This is where I think he realizes that it’s his Dad with him because he suddenly starts wailing “Daaaaa daaaaa!” “Daaa Daaaa!”where before it was only crying, no attempt at words or other noises.

My heart breaks.

I pick him up and he quiets down immediatley. I decide that I’ve had enough Ferberizing for one night. I bring him back into our room where I notice it is now 4:45 AM. Awesome. My wife nurses him to sleep while I try to drift off. After another hour of laying awake, I think I slept. Maybe.

I just thought I’d say, yeahhhh. New parents have it tough, and new Mom’s really have it rough. Andrew has gas or something and refused to go down again after nursing so I shushed him back to sleep and rolled back into bed. 45 seconds later he is stirring again. It’s hard to sooth a baby when I am missing key tools like breasts. Anyway, Lydia finally had to get him down.

One tip for putting babies down the first time. If he is almost asleep after nursing, I pick him up and move him quickly to the crip. If he starts to fuss and try to rub his eyes, I just gently hold his arms down against the mattress. He likes to sleep with his arms up in the “I surrender” pose. I don’t even grab them but just cup my hand over them so that he can’t lift them and touch his face. After a few seconds of squirming, he gives up and falls asleep.