Thursday, April 7, 2011


Okay, so Eli's sleeping habits have gotten pretty, they've gotten crazy ridiculous and last night I finally had it. Once upon a time when he was about 4 months old or so he would sleep through the night...but that only lasted a month at best and ever since then he has been up about 2-3 times per night. Lately though he has been getting up about every 1-2 hours, and seriously, he's 10.5 months old and does not need to do that. I have been feeling so stuck and have just let him do this because 1) Aaron can't stand to hear him cry and it gives him a huge headache and he loses precious sleep that he needs so he can be alert in order to take care of his patients, and 2) I just feel horrible letting Eli cry and not going to his really, I have created this little monster and now I am trying to un-do this nasty little habit of his that is driving me crazy!

Last night Eli went down to bed at about 7:45...about an hour or so later he's up and throwing a tantrum because I won't nurse him. Poor Johnathan was crying "go get Eli, Mama, he needs you" and covering his ears with his hands to try to block out the crying. That is when I decided to I really had to try to correct Eli's bad habit of not sleeping even though I knew it would be a tough road to travel.

I reassured Johnathan that Eli was going to be okay and that we needed to let him fall to sleep by himself. I walked over to Eli's crib to reassure him and then left the room. Eli cried for about 10-15 minutes and then went to sleep. A couple hours later Eli was up again and this time he was really angry. Johnathan woke up again too and was crying for me because Eli was being too loud. I went to get Johnathan and thought I'd try the don't give into the crying approach. Johnathan slept in our bed and Eli wailed in his bed...every hour or so for about 15 minutes each time...the. whole. was awful. No one really got much sleep and Eli apparently did not get the memo that he needed to sleep in longer time increments. Ugh!

Really I was expecting him to throw a huge long fit and then sleep peacefully the rest of the night. That's what I've heard from people who have had to help their babies learn to sleep through the night. That didn't happen and I am nervous about a repeat again tonight. Any advice would be helpful. Some people say to just let them cry and don't go in at all. Others say to go in and reassure them but don't get them out of bed. I am sure there are many schools of thought on this and really no "right way" to do it. All I know is that I am exhausted and my body is totally worn out. Lately whenever I am about to try to go to bed at night I get so anxious because I am so tired but know that I won't really be getting much rest. I thought I could handle it (Johnathan never slept through the night 'til he was about 20 months!) but I just can't. I am too tired and I am desperate!

Tonight Johnathan will sleep on the blow-up mattress on our floor and we'll try this thing again. I hope it takes...and that it doesn't take too many nights before Eli gets the picture. He sure is a stubborn one though, so we'll see.



Ivy said...

oh Grace.... I feel for you! And I am right there with you. I can NOT handle the crying but Charlie is 21mo and still waking up at night. I am worn out too. HELP!!!!!!!!!

The only advice that I have is do go comfort him. I wouldn't want to feel abandoned myself. And when we finally broke the habit with Will it was actually marcus doing it. He would go in, comfort him and say "no mommy. Mommy is shreeping" and put him back to bed. It worked great. But it creates a monster of its own because EVEN NOW if Will wakes up and sees me in the night it is a huge ordeal to get him back in bed. And he is FOUR now! ridiculous... I think maybe kiddos are just monsters no matter what. How lucky for them that we love them so much....

Gail said... sorry that you and Aaron (and Johnathan and Eli) are so sleep deprived. :( Frowny face. :( It can make it hard to get through the day. Now I know that I'm not by any means really experienced with this, but Cole was starting to wake up in the middle of the night again a few weeks ago. I resisted the urge to nurse him for the most part (I did a couple of times cause I was so tired and Matt had had it too). I talked to our pediatrician and she said that he might just be requiring more substance cause he was going through a growth spurt. She said I could feed him rice cereal right before bed to get him through the night. I'm going to wait until 6 mo. to introduce solids, but what I did was nurse him extra long before bedtime to get him through the night and so far so good. Maybe since he is on solids you could feed him a little something before bedtime and see if that works? Once he gets the hang of sleeping through the night you could ween him off the feeding? Just take this advice with a grain of may not be applicable to you....but might!

Love you much,

The Allen Family said...

I totally feel for you! I had to let Addy cry it out because I was working and was trying to survive on 3-4 hours of sleep a night. She would want to nurse all night and then she would go to sleep in my arms and wake up as soon as I put her in her bed. Letting her cry it out has been one of the best things we did though because she is now a pretty good sleeper (she does wake up sometimes at night but only for a sip of water or if she had a bad dream). I remember going in to reassure her, but I also remember going in increments....I had a timer and I think I did like 5, then 10, etc. Finally it got to like waiting an hour and she was usually out by then. I remember doing this about 3 nights and it worked much better (although every time we got off our schedule we had to do it again). Every child is different though and I pray you have a better night tonight!!!