I knew it would happen.
As soon as I told everyone about how our little Aediepoo had figured himself out, he’d go and change everything on us.
I wasn’t surprised.
I also wasn’t discouraged.
Because he is still as sweet as ever.
He is still so melt-my-heart-achingly cute.
He is still my baby boy.
He still sleeps.
He just wakes up more :)
We’ve been working on getting him to wake up later in the morning. He had been waking up at the cheery hour of 6am (sometimes earlier, but I just refused to get him out of bed until it was 6am). Unfortunately, this meant a ridiculously early bedtime of 6pm (not to mention a mother that could barely find the floor as she tried to keep herself awake long enough to make it to his first nap), which meant that Daddy hardly got to see the kiddo unless he came home early. Also.. I felt like he just seemed tired all day.
So, we started pushing back his bedtime.
And listening to him cry a little longer each morning.
And it was gradually working. He was waking around 2:30-3:30ish to eat in the middle of the night, and then waking at 6 one morning.. 6:23 the next.. 6:25 then going back to sleep til 6:45.. I think this might be working!
Then a few nights ago as we are going up to bed, we hear a little cry.
We freeze. (You learn the art of freezing when you have a screamer. Your heart begins to pound. Your sweat glands begin oozing. Your mind begins racing about what it could be this time, how long it may be until your ears find peace and your eyes find precious sleep.. Even when the screamer is no longer a screamer.. You are trained to respond this way.. Anyway..)
Did we just hear that?
Daaaaaaaang iiiiiiiiiiit. Why is he awake? Why is he awake now that we are just going to bed? What do we do? We must have woken him up.
In the end, I decide to feed him and put him back down since he doesn’t normally do that. We decide to just wait and see if it happens again the next night.. but we know it probably won’t, right? Because we woke him up, right?
Since that night, whatever night it may have been, he has been waking up an extra time in the late evening.. 11ish. Perhaps he is having a growth spurt? Perhaps he is just being the hungry child he has always been.
I am now realizing that he was not waking up for the day in those early mornings when I was hoping he only needed to eat once at night. He was waking up to EAT and then simply responding to his mama when she made him think he was ready to be up for the day.
The sleep book does not always have the answers, you see. It instructed me that if he is waking up around 2 to eat, that should be all he needs. Whenever he wakes next will be when he is awake for the day, and that shouldn’t be any earlier than 6. (or something like that.. I am an oft-confused, forgetful new mother.. these things happen..)
The sleep book does not know my child.
It was not there sitting awake with me while I nursed this baby hour after hour through those loooooooooong nights. And then continued to nurse him hour after hour during those loooooooooong days. It did not listen with me to everyone wondering if my milk supply was low because he was always eating or worry with me that maybe they were right. It did not then witness his intense love for eating grow as he discovered solid foods which he now consumes four times a day on top of nursing before AND after every nap.
The sleep book does not know. It does not know that even with all this eating, my baby boy is still just right on his growth curve as he has always been.
So one morning I said to Ian, “Maybe I should just feed him and put him back down and see if he’ll go back to sleep for a while.”
Ian was half asleep. Sleepy Ian is notoriously unhelpful. Mostly I am just musing aloud when I am talking to sleepy Ian.
So that is what I did. And after a few nights, I am finding that my baby still needs to eat twice at night. When these two times might occur varies, but two times it will be.
I actually had to wake him up this morning at 8.
That. Was. Awesome.
Sleep is a good thing. You should try it.