Thursday, June 3, 2010

Night #1 of Sleep Training

Well, night 1 of sleep training is done. It actually went really well. And just for the record, I'm not looking to be judged, so if you have negative comments...please keep them to yourself :)

So I prolonged our bedtime routine and I fed him before his bath, had a nice long relaxing bath, then a baby massage, then I put him down on a nice soft blanket on the floor while he chewed on Sophie and I read him a few stories. Then I sang to him (poor fella!) and decided that he should have some snuggles with me because I wouldn't get to console him during the night. Sigh. He started getting a little restless so I decided to top him up. I had to talk to him the whole time he nursed to keep him awake (very important) and then he had a good burp. I gave him a pacifier (not ready to give this up yet) snuggled with him and sang him our sleep song Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. I put him down drowsy but awake at 8:40PM...and his first 5 minute check-in he was asleep!

The next step is to do a dreamfeed 1 hour before he usually eats. Since he's unpredictable, they say feed him at the earliest he's ever woken up. It was kind of a gamble, but he usually gives me a 2.5-3 hour stretch so I gently picked him up out of his pack and play (PNP), he had a good, long feed and I put him back down without a peep. I went to bed and he woke up shortly after midnight, so a 3.5 hour stretch. I had my alarm set to dreamfeed him at 1AM, so according to the training I had to let Braden cry. It actually wasn't bad at all, he did very well and only cried for 18 minutes. I did my check at 5 minutes and 10 minutes, then 3 minutes later he was asleep! I did another dreamfeed which was only 2 minutes and he went back down. So my goal was to do dreamfeeds every 2 hours, as that's what he's been used to and poor Braden woke up 5 minutes before my alarm was to go off to feed him! This was the worst part of the night as he cried and whimpered off and on for 1 hour exactly. Then I waited 15 minutes and he had a really good dreamfeed.

Next thing was to dreamfeed him one more time at 6AM and I was so tired that I slept through my alarm, but only by 10 minutes. Fed him successfully again (these dreamfeeds are AMAZING!) and he started stirring at about 7:30. As part of the training they HAVE to stay in their bed for 11 hours, which would be 7:40. So he fussed and cried just a little until 7:40 and Jay went to get him up and praised him with big smiles and cuddles for doing so well with his sleep training. So, really, he only woke up twice last night! A huge improvement from being up every hour and half or two!

He slept 3.5 hours, 2.5 hours, and 3.5 hours. The goal is 11 or 12 hours of uninterrupted sleep, so we have a ways to go, but I'm pleased with how it's gone so far. Now I have to be consistent and keep this going with his naps. He was actually rested enough to stay awake the recommended 2 hours until his morning nap, so I did the sameish routine again and he went down for his nap drowsy but awake without a fuss. For naps he has to stay in his PNP for 1 hour from when I put him down, and if he sleeps longer - great!

I just wanted to say that when Braden cries at night, it is an extremely tired cry and he is not in "tantrum" mode. I know his cries well enough that he is not in pain, not hungry, he's just crying for mommy to come and comfort him back to sleep because that's what he's used to. It's very tough to hear my baby cry, but in the long run, and even immediately, it's better. When Braden has been up so much crying all these nights, it frustrates me in my sleep deprived state and I have my moments when I want to "throw him out the proverbial window". I would never harm him, but I also know that my stress isn't helping him to relax and get the sleep he needs. This way, he is learning to self-soothe and he doesn't have to be put-off with my frustrations and I can be by myself, take deep breaths and send him positive sleep vibes!

Thanks for reading, more updates to come!


  1. Melissa and one of the other Moms asked me if I was going down to the farm this weekend. I told her, "No.. Sarah's sleep training Braden." Melissa right away said she did it with the twins, and it worked great, and they've always been really good sleepers! So sounds like you're on the right track!!

  2. Hope so. The naps went REALLY well today. Braden, King of the 45 Minute Nap, napped for 1.75 hrs, 45 mins, and 1 hour today! That's much improved from three 45 minute naps per day. Hopefully this keeps going well. I'm glad to know that sleep training can actually work - if people can do it with twins (I know Katie did), then I know it can work!

  3. Sounds good so far Sarah!

    Keep it up, I know it's tough but you've come so far already in just one night. :)

  4. It's tough Sarah but stick with it, You'll all love getting more sleep in the end.


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