Okay, so Eli's sleeping habits have gotten pretty ridiculous...no, 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 rescue...so 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. night...it 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.