I didn’t really have much of a Parenting Philosophy when we had G. I didn’t want to purchase any baby books because I was pretty sure they would drive me crazy with their emphatic conflicting opinions. And since very few of our friends had procreated yet, I had few opportunities to observe (and subsequently judge) real live parents at work.
But while I was pregnant, I had heard about “the fourth trimester,” the idea that during the first three months of the his or her life, you should work to create a “womblike” environment for your newborn; ie. holding/cuddling baby as much as possible, feeding on demand, ignoring schedules, responding to your babe’s every little bleat and cry with whatever (s)he may need.
The concept made intuitive sense to me, so that’s pretty much how we operated. In this way, A and I bumbled through, learning G’s cues for hunger, fatigue, playtime, figuring out his inherent rhythms, and generally discovering that our little dude was — as far as these things go — a relatively “easy” baby… meaning he never cried all that much, as long as we stayed on top of his (generally easy to anticipate) needs.
Then… G hit four months old. And even though I had sworn I wasn’t going to torture myself by reading books on baby sleep… I caved. Because all of a sudden, our easy peasy little boy who had previously been sleeping in solid 6 to 8 hour chunks and seemingly trending toward a full night’s sleep started waking up every couple of hours throughout the night, like MAMA!!! FEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEED ME! Also, I discovered that while it’s totally sweet and bonding to serve as a womb impersonator for a 0-3 month old baby, once said baby (who, may I remind you, was already 10 pounds AT BIRTH) reaches 4 months old* and still can’t manage to nap during the day unless you’re doing your best womb impression by cradling/bouncing him maniacally on a supersized yoga ball, you’d be ready to wade through an entire library of conflicting advice to give your crumbling body a break and put that kid to sleep in his crib too.
So that’s what I did. I read a bunch of Jerky McJerk Jerk “expert” guides to sleep training, until I lucked out and discovered the one that actually works. It’s called the Sleepeasy Solution, and it is now our baby sleep bible.
I can’t shut up about it. Really — I can’t. I love it so much, I’m guest blogging about it today on my friend Jessica’s parenting blog. It’s a two-parter — read Part 1 here and Part 2 here. (Update: Jessica tried it — and it worked! Woo hoo!)
So, if you’re a bleary eyed mama looking for relief — dear one, it’s right around the corner. Go read the blog posts, give the method a shot. Then come back when you’re nice and rested and tell us how it worked for you.