Thursday, June 3, 2010

Sleep Training Lessons

Alternate title: Hell on Earth. 
This picture is two months old...but it is the last picture I have of him sleeping on his own...that should give you a little hint as to how well our sleep habits are.)

Jack is not a good sleeper, and I will be the first to say that that is mostly (almost completely) MY fault.  I spent the first few months of Jack's life neurotically poking him in his sleep to make sure he was breathing.  That sounds funny, I know, but seriously...I poked my baby...a lot.

Lesson One: Don't poke your baby.  Poking helps no one.

At four months we transitioned him to his crib, and by that I mean we tried it once, and it he cried, so I held him on the couch.  

Lesson Two: Don't hold your baby on the couch overnight.  It may be easier, but it's not safe and it's not smart.

At four and half months we had to move to my mom's house, so he and I shared a futon.

Lesson Three:  Futons are uncomfortable.

Now, at seven months, he can't sleep anywhere but in my arms.  You can imagine how conducive that is to marriage.  As if living in your parents basement wasn't a big enough deterrent to romance, holding a baby will pretty much guarantee little to no umm...intimacy. (I feel a little weird writing about sex here since I never do, but come on, we are married...we didn't get pregnant from holding hands...oh...and...umm...Hi DAD. Awkward.)  When intimacy suffers, you start acting's true.  You get annoyed with their habits, they breathe too loud, they hold the remote control wrong, and MY GOSH you're hair is too pointy (No really, at one point or another I have irrationally rolled my eyes at all of the above).

Lesson Four: Sex is important to marriage.

I knew that I was the one holding all three of us back in many different ways, so we got the crib from our house, cleaned the mattress thoroughly, and June 1st marked the beginning of what I like to call purgatory.

However, last night was also the first night in a long time that I spent cuddled with my husband.  Sure, it was because I was crying because Jack was crying, but it's a start.

Lesson Five: We can do this...I think.

We are getting there, I'll let you know when we do.  Until then, does anyone want to come over here and explain to Jack that sleep is actually a good thing?


  1. I am so sorry. Stay strong, you can do this! I don't know about you, but I actually feel some kind of adrenaline rush (hormones/instincts) when I hear one of my boys cry. I can't do anything when I hear them cry. I can't read, watch TV, talk on the phone, think, nothing.

    Matt if you are reading this, don't get mad at her for wanting to run to Jack to comfort him. Gently remind her of your goals, but also remember that maternal instincts are real.

  2. Oh Nora...I couldnt agree more! Last night I sat and stared at the red lights on the monitor for about 20 minutes. I kills me to hear his cry.

    Thanks for your advice! Its is ALWAYS welcome!

  3. Bekah, I alternately laughed, and cried, at this post. Stay strong, and it sounds like you are on the right road. Best of luck with all parts of this new challenge.


  4. Aw friend I'm sorry. I wish I could come over and help out so you can sleep! HUGS!! xoxox

  5. Ok... I swear there is like a full moon or something freaky going on because my daughter Josie has been an AMAZING sleeper since about 3 or 4 months old... only crying for her nuk once or twice (not the point tho... sorry!) However, recently (and it could be due to the 2 bottom teeth moving in (watch out world!)she has slept HORRIBLEY! I feel like she is a newborn lately - only worse! Up every other hour - SEEERIOUSLY! I want to cry! But, I am just praying for peace - and rest for us all - even you and your baby!!! Night Night :-) Good luck!

  6. P.S. Not to be wierd, but I completely understand the intimacy issues you have been having - and have them too! Our baby has been in her own room and own bed since day 1, but I am E-X-H-A-U-S-T-E-D and gettin' frisky just doesn't have the allure it once did - that, and I swear having an hours worth of stiches after childbirth has changed me forever! AHHH! :-)

  7. It'll get better I promise...Mine has always been a good sleeper. However, he has gone through spells where he wakes up and cries, and I of course, run to get him and he sleeps with us the rest of the night. They are smart little stinkers, because then it happens every night until I just get tough and let him cry it out. Then we go back to sleeping all night.

  8. Jackson is a pretty good night sleeper but the days are killing me. He will only sleep if I'm holding him and if I put him down I get about 10 minutes. It's been more than once that my hubby has come home to both of us crying. And as far as intimacy goes I find myself all touched out by the end of the day and just want to be left to myself. Being a new parent, while the best thing that has ever happened to me, is hard stuff.

  9. WAIT! You mean you had ... the...umm...(GULP) "S" word?

    I remember someone else who was lousy at letting their kids learn to sleep on their own.

    Thoughts of my arm forced trhough the narrow slats of your bed waiting for you to fall asleep (HOURS)

    I love you!

    We will watch the little guy for you. AND buy Dinner out for you and Matthew.


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