June 23, 2010

i hate sleep

Apparently anyway.

I should preface this post by saying I know I should be thankful. Ryann really does sleep pretty well. We have had almost two weeks of her sleeping from 11pm - 7 am. I was getting almost 8 straight (ok well that is a lie, but I'll explain later) hours of sleep. No parent can really complain about that can they?

But here are my problems. First and most importantly, I am not a late night girl, and never have been. I was usually the first one asleep at slumber parties when I was a kid, and in college I often didn't go out because I honestly was just too tired to leave the house after 10.

Ryann however, has seemingly decided that her bedtime is between 10:45 and 11:30. The good side of that, is we don't have to be super worried about being out later in the evening, or people being at our house.

My next dilemma... for some reason I'm an early riser. It is nearly impossible for me to sleep past 6am, unless I am completely exhausted. In college when I would decide to be adventurous, and stay out until 2 am or so, I would still be awake by 7:30 at the latest. At sleepovers I would always be laying around my friend's houses just hoping they would wake up.

So even if Ry sleeps until 7:00 or later, I am laying in my bed awake at 5:45. I have tried to use this to my advantage but getting up and taking a shower before she is awake, but sometimes I want to be asleep so bad I can't make myself move.

Which brings me to my last dilemma. If I wake up in the middle of the night anytime after 3am, it takes me hours to get back to sleep. So the last two nights when Ry has decided to want a 3am feeding (I know I should be lucky that she only wants to eat once in the night!) I proceeded to lay awake for the next 2.5 hours listening to her grunt and wiggle around (she is an extremely noisy sleeper), Chris snoring, and my brain spinning with things I wanted and needed to get done. By the time I'm falling back asleep Chris is getting up to go to the hospital, which means I go in and out of sleep until 7 when Ry decides she is up for the day.

I don't know how to convince Ryann that bedtime is earlier. I can't figure out how our bedtime routine should go, or when it should start. Last night my theory was that I was going to put Ry to bed after her next to last feeding (which was around 7:30) and then half wake her up around 10:00 for one more bottle (I don't think we can skip this last feeding, as it is she only takes in 20oz a day) and hopefully she would be out for the night. She was in her bed asleep at 9, and was awake again by 9:10, fussy and cranky. Chris tried to soothe her back to sleep with no luck, so I tried to give her another bottle. She only took part of it, fell asleep by 10, and was extremely grunty from 1:30am-3am. At 3 I gave her a bottle in the hopes that she would calm down and sleep more soundly. It worked, for about 30 minutes. So I would call my plan a fail.

The good news? My girl looks adorable in pjs. :o)

If any of you brilliant mothers out there have any suggestions for a nighttime routine, be it things you do to calm your little one, what your timing is, etc, I would love to hear it. She fights going down for a nap all day long (she does take them, it just takes me at least 20-30 minutes to get her to sleep) so by bedtime I really am so ready for some peace... and sleep. I know she is a baby, and it takes some babies a long time to figure out this sleep thing, but any help I could get would be amazing :o).


Kristal said...

Well, Isaac is an early to bed, early to rise kinda guy. We start his nighttime routine around 7 - bath, lotion, nurse, book, and then I lay him down. He's usually asleep by 7:30 or 8. He still wakes up numerous times a night to nurse, but we co-sleep, so that really just involves me rolling over and us both falling asleep while he eats. And then he's typically up for the day between 6:30 and 7.

As far as moving her bedtime up a few hours...I haven't got a clue. We started Isaac on an early routine right away and it seemed to just work, so I don't have any good suggestions. I think a consistent nighttime routine is important though!

Erin said...

Annie also has been really consistent with a bedtime of about 8pm, since she was very very young. Now she's even moving closer to 7pm. We did start a bedtime routine (nurse, swaddle (now she has her arms out since she can roll, but we still wrap her), book, a few minutes of rocking and in the crib drowsy but awake) at 2 months and I really think that helped her to understand that it was sleep time. It is kind of tough now that it stays light out longer but we keep her room as dark as possible so she has some sense that it's "night".

I have read an embarrassing number of books on sleep, and they are really helpful. Even if you aren't a proponent of any sleep training (which we haven't had to do - I just find the books fascinating) the books Solve Your Child's Sleep Problems by Ferber and Healthy Sleep Habits Happy Child by Weissbluth both contain a lot of good information on the science of sleep that really help to understand sleep associations, cycles, etc. I'd highly recommend checking one or both out of the library. Ferber's book gets a bad rap as only being about cry it out, but it isn't AT ALL. There is specifically a chapter on moving up bedtime that might help you. I think he recommends something like trying to move it up by 15 minutes each day until it is where you want it to be.

Sorry I'm writing a novel here, but I also have had some of the sleep issues that you are facing for yourself... still haven't figured them out but I can relate. I wrote about it on my blog and got a lot of helpful suggestions:

Good luck!

S. Anderson said...

One thing that helps me fall back to sleep is to just focus on my breathing, not on my thoughts. Giving yourself something specific to focus on might help!

Good luck. You might have a few more months before her sleep really gets regular. But, it will likely happen if she is already getting in a good routine.

Jenn said...

I think figuring out your own sleep is the best bet. I haven't heard many successful attempts to get a baby to sleep on any schedule other than their own!

I feel your pain on the late to bed late to rise thing baby though. I was "that" girl at the slumber party too!

Good luck! Can you wear ear plugs... would your hubby wake up when the baby cries? (Mine sleeps too heavily for that).

Ben and Melissa said...

We're still new at this, too, so I don't have any advice. :(
But, I just wanted to say that Ryann is beautiful!! And I love those jammies!

Melissa Welch said...

I started Aidan on a bedtime routine about 2-3 momths of age. I believe he would take 3-4 naps a day, but he used to lay down with me, or sleep on my chest during naps. At night-time, we started our routine around 7-7:30pm. We typically gave him a bath, then feed him a bottle, then we would rock in his room. It was quiet in there, so there were minimal distractions. He would usually be in bed between 9-10pm. I know there is a lot of downtime in between there, but sometimes it was hard for him to go to sleep, so we just kept things dimmed and quiet and let him play with whatever he would play with at the time. I don't know if you use a binkie, but they are helpful too.

As for you, I don't know what to do about that. I was such a light sleeper when Aidan was little, if he even moved, I would be wide awake. Derek and I would alternate nights on who would wake up with him. He only woke up about 1-2x/night periodically. He had almost always slept through the night for a good 8-10 hours since he was a newbie.

Good luck with your sleep issue! Sorry I couldn't offer any more advice!

Anonymous said...

Just wanted to say we're going through the exact same thing (except I can't seem to ever wake up, wishing I didn't need as much sleep as I do). My daughter (who is just shy of 4 months) also likes to go to bed at 11pm and seems to have a solid night's sleep when she goes to bed late. However, we've been trying to move her bedtime up earlier. She is very restless and fussy for at least an hour and then falls asleep. But then she is wide awake during her 2am feeding and doesn't want to go back to sleep. I think it just takes some time. I've been noticing that she is slowly getting better at falling asleep on her own. We just go up and comfort her when she is fussing after we put her down. I try not to take her out of her crib - but just rub her head and she seems to be going to sleep a little faster each night. Hang in there, you're not alone!!