Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Little rascal

We are perplexed. We are befuddled. We are exhausted.

I had been prepared to write a post about what an amazing sleeper Eli is... and then he became an even better sleeper... and then it all fell apart.

Let me back up.

For the past two months, Eli has been reliably sleeping from about 8pm until about 6am, with one wake-up to eat sometime near 2am. We had been trying to wean him off that middle-o-night feeding as Josh and I were pretty sure it was more habit than need.

Last Friday, Eli decided to sleep through his feeding (hooray!) and woke up at about 4am. Josh gave him his pacifier and then he slept until after 7am! He repeated this feat on Saturday night with a few variations.

Sunday night was a little more of a struggle... but still no middle of the night trip to the formula cafe.

Then it all hit the fan.

Monday and Tuesday nights were awful. Eli slept until about 12:30am then began waking up every hour and a half. WHAT?

We can't figure out what changed... friends have thrown out growth spurt and teething as possibilities. I'm pretty sure Eli has been in the middle of a growth spurt since the day he was born, so that seems far-fetched to me. I have felt his gums and haven't noticed any swelling or tooth bumps.

If it happens again tonight, we will go back to offering him a small bottle. Not really a fan of this because I don't think he needs those calories (have you SEEN his rolls?) ... but I am a BIG fan of sleep!

Any ideas, advice, or tricks?


Jodie Allen said...

my humble advice? stick with it! if you give in and start up the bottle again it will just make this transition harder the next time! sometimes it can take up to two weeks or so for a new night routine to take root so hang in there and be strong! nap during the day and drink an extra soda... soon he'll get through it and you'll be sleeping happIER again! :)

Amber Sidwell said...

Deb, I agree with Jodi. I would try to do away with the bottle in the middle of the night if possible. I agree it is more a habit than a need. I know it is terribly hard, but this is about the age my pediatrician recommended letting him cry it out if he wakes up. A few nights of it and Eli will be used to it. Hang in there mama!

Kathy said...

My daughter did this at around 6 mos of age. If I turned on some type of "white noise" like a rickety old fan we had at the time, she fell right back asleep. Maybe try that?

Sara D. said...

Okay, here is my little nugget, for what it's worth...I can't say it's any kind of rocket science, but it helped us!!

With my kids, I would make up a bottle before I went to bed, around 11 p.m.--I would "kind of" wake the baby, meaning get him/her out of bed and feed them. Really, their eyes never opened, and I didn't do a diaper change. I tried to make it as non-sleep-disturbing as possible, and really, they just kind of downed that bottle while remaining somewhat drowsy. That way, my kids only had to go 8-ish hours without eating, versus 12. Once they had those 8 hours down without trouble, I began cutting that bottle out. I would say I did that somewhere around 6 months, although Mike always claimed I could have done it sooner. I'm not willing to risk sleep!

I'm not sure if that's helpful...I know it's a scary thought to think of waking a baby to eat! Plus, it's the way we did it from the very start, which means my kids were pretty used to being half-woken to eat. No doubt that could backfire, and Eli might decide he's up and ready to party! But, if you're looking to switch it up, that might help. Plus, if you do it, and he still wakes up two hours later, you can be assured that the issue is not starvation, right?

Good luck!!

Gina Dankel said...

I've heard of doing the late night feeding, too. C would go stints where he would sleep through the night and then he would go back to waking up in the middle of the night--sometimes back to 2 times at night. It was frustrating. I have no idea if it was teeth, but his first 2 teeth came up w/o any warning at around 4 months old. He could make it all night long consistently until he started on real solid foods (not just cereal). I hope he goes back to letting you sleep. Those first 6 months are brutal w/the lack of sleep.