I was proud of how well Squeaks slept. Most nights she would go down at her usual bedtime of 8:30pm and not wake up till 7:30 the next morning when Josh and I started making noise getting ready for the day. Eleven hours straight! A “rough” night would happen here and there with one or to wake ups. I’d rock her back to sleep, no need to feed or change her, and she’d go right back down after about twenty or thirty minutes. Seriously amazing and I totally understand, not the norm for a fifteen-month old.
We have a very specific bedtime routine. Around 7:30 we make the house a little quieter, turn down lights and noise. At 8:00 she goes in a warm bath with a half cup of Epsom salts (magnesium is great for sleep) and a few drops of lavender oil. Daddy does bath time these days since I’m getting bigger and have a bit less bend in the middle. She’s out of the tub by 8:15 and into jammies and a night time diaper (a BumGenius pocket diaper stuffed with a a Flip organic cotton night time insert. Has never leaked!). Once she has her budgie (what we call her pacifier), and we do a bit of rocking and snuggling, she’s generally out in ten to fifteen minutes. I always felt like super mom walking out of her room each night. My kid sleeps great! I must be doing something right! Go me!
About two weeks ago (not long after I had bragged about our “perfected bed time routine”) it all went to hell. From the moment I’d close the door to her room, she’d flip out. Crying, arching her back, wouldn’t close her eyes no matter how much I rocked her, and forget putting her in her crib, she’d just scream bloody murder! Way to take me down a peg or two kid! Nothing had changed. Our routine had even worked while she was cutting four molars (with a dose of Infant Motrin here and there). Literally NOTHING had changed! Josh and I were stumped. It took forever to get her to sleep and then she started waking up multiple times a night and took hours to fall asleep again. It wreaked havoc on her nap time schedule and my ability to function on a daily basis.
We tried everything we could think of, and everything other people could think of. I switched her nightlight, rearranged items that may be causing scary shadows in the dark, white noise, giving her the shirt I wore that day so she’d have my smell for comfort, teething tablets, more lavender oil…EVERYTHING!
Finally we tried something a friend had tried with her daughter. We took the front of her crib off and made it a toddler bed. We were both pretty nervous about it. She would be able to get out of bed on her own! Would she fall out or try to climb over the safety rail? But we tried it. The second she saw her new bed (I took the front off a few hours before bed time so she could see it and get used to it) she loved it! She started climbing in and out bringing toys back and forth with her, squealing with joy the whole time. This could work.
It’s been about five days since we switched her bed and things have definitely improved. She still doesn’t go down quite as easily, and has still gotten up once or twice at night a few times. But! She slept eleven hours straight again last night! It was like the good old days!
I have been told now by several moms that this is normal. It’s called sleep regression. Our “fix” (although not really a “fix” as much as a “help”) might not work for everyone, but maybe it’ll help some tired, end-of-her-rope, mom out there. Just an FYI though, be prepared for them to get out of bed, but not cry. The first night we tried this Squeaks went exploring around her room. Her bedroom door is closed at night and she can’t work doorknobs yet, thankfully. When we went to check on her in the morning she had ended up on the other side of the room asleep on the floor by her rocking chair. She hadn’t even cried! I think she just got up, went for a little walk, and then curled up on the floor! Silly kid!
Anyway, long post. It’s been a long few weeks. Sweet dreams.
|Happy sleepy girl in her big girl bed.|