Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Sleep Training

Well, here I am at 4:01 am  sitting in the den listening to James cry.  The internet does make this a little bit easier to do.  I know that it is for his own good.  He really needs to get out of the habit of waking up in the middle of the night.  I had to do this with Ella at exactly the same age, but it seems different.  I guess the major difference is that James has been a good sleeper all-in-all.  He's just developed some bad habits over the past few weeks.

With Ella, I was absolutely desperate for sleep.  And sleep training was so rewarding.  With only two nights of crying, she began to sleep through the night and take 1 1/2 hour naps.  Before being allowed to learn how to go to sleep on her own, she only slept 30 minutes at a time.  It was such a relief to me to finally be able to get some sleep and have some breaks during the day.  Life became so easy at that point.  We lived in Louisville, and I was home alone with Ella a lot.  KJ had 40 hours of work plus school plus being interim pastor at our church.  Praise the Lord he was able to buy me a car when Ella was 7 months old!  Previous to that, we could only go where my feet could take us, strolling through the surrounding neighborhoods (it was a great place for walking) or to Wal-Mart.  That's right.  Wal-Mart was exactly 1/2 mile from our front door, and Ella and I walked there in the stroller many times to get out of the house.  There was also a Dollar Tree within walking distance.  Ella loved Wal-Mart even as an infant.  As soon as she was old enough to sit up in the buggy she charmed everyone in the store, smiling and waving .

When we  bought the "girls' car," a whole new horizon opened before us.  We lived in a great area with everything at our fingertips:  Target, Gap, Old Navy, Books-A-Million, Kohl's, TJ Maxx, Barnes & Noble, and of course, the local library.  The branch of the Louisville library closest to us was in a local junior high school, and so there wasn't a huge selection there, but they had a great system where you could go online and pick out what you wanted and have it sent to the branch you wanted, and they would call you when it arrived.  Ella and I had many fun adventures at that little library, and it was actually the last place I went before we moved to Tuscaloosa.  I had to drop off library books on our way out of town.

But, back to sleep made my life so much easier with Ella.  With a normal and regular schedule, we were able to get out and enjoy the world together.  And every afternoon I would kick back in the old recliner and play Scrabble on the computer while watching our latest Netflix.  Wow.  I haven't seen that kind of free time in a while.  

Poor James.  He is still crying.  It's not terrible, but it is starting to wear on me.  It has been going on for 50 minutes.  I rocked him when he first woke up, and I've been in a couple of times since to sing and rub his back.  I really hate this.  Quiet.  Dare I hope?  Slight sob.  Quiet again.  Nope, not quite.  My poor baby.  What should I do?

Our first walk with James sitting up in the stroller.
He looks so huge, but I promise he's still just a baby.


  1. Lynn, it will happen! Don't worry! If you stay steadfast, James will get it and you can throw a big party for all the sleep you are getting!!! YAY! ;) Praying for you some major energy today!

  2. I had to do this with Bethany as well. She was much like Ella - waking up several times at night and she wouldn't sleep longer than 20 minutes during the day! After a couple of nights our life changed and I wondered why I hadn't done it earlier - though I hadn't heard of the concept before that! Just remember there is a light at the end of the tunnel - or maybe a light out and sleep!!! Stay strong!

  3. Sterling was just like James. He was an excellent sleeper. He had to sleep in our room until about four months due to living arrangements. So, while he "slept through the night," anytime he woke up I reached down and found a paci or turned on the vibrations for his bouncy seat (that is where he slept every night). When we moved into our house, we had to do some sleep training too. It took him a couple of weeks to not wake up. I learned to turn my monitor sound off. It would still wake me up when it would come on and I would watch the lights until he went to sleep. It was a lot easier than listening to him cry.