Hooray! He finally slept through the night!
I can't believe it's been almost four months since the birth of my son. So much has changed since he came into this world. There have been plenty of difficulties and I'm sure there are more on the horizon, but we recently overcame a big one.
I realized very early in Abel's life that I did not function well on the few hours of sleep a nursing newborn permits. I spent almost two months in a complete daze--I was overwhelmed, exhausted, grumpy, and antisocial. I was just not myself. But I tried to keep the faith. I read up on countless sleep methods and gleaned what I could from each of them. And honestly, I prayed--I prayed for wisdom, I prayed for patience, I prayed for comfort for my son, and I prayed for rest. I soon began to count every hour of extra nighttime sleep as a victory and before I knew it, my attitude had changed.
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When he started sleeping three hours at a time, I was shocked. But within a couple of weeks he was sleeping five hour stretches and shortly after that became consistent, he had a single seven-hour nigh. I have to tell you all, I felt like a new woman! Surprisingly, that seven-hour night was immediately followed by nine hours of uninterrupted sleep and he's been sleeping mostly eight to 10 hours a night ever since.
Though I'm pretty sure establishing a bed time routine played a big part in my son's sleep progress, I'm also sure my increasingly relaxed state of mind rubbed off on him. Whatever it was that clicked, I'm grateful for it. And I've found that even when he has the occasional middle-of-the-night or early-morning wake-up, I handle it much better than I did a couple of months ago.
Also, you should know that I'm probably doing everything wrong. I nurse and rock my son to sleep, I wake him from naps and keep him up too long and I drag him around outside of the house every single day. So mamás, there is hope! One sleep method may not work or maybe none of them will, but if you parent by feel and do what works for your family the time will come--your baby may not sleep through the night at eight weeks or even eight months, but know that eventually, he will. And when he does, all the sleepless nights will seem like a very distant memory.
Image via Shayne Rodriguez Thompson