Self-Soothing & Parting with the Crib | Sleep Training Part 2

9:18 AM

In Sleep Training Part 1, I recapped our nighttime routine and how crucial a routine is to your baby & even toddler's sleep. However, this time I'm diving into our sleep-training routine & transitioning your baby from one bed to another. Something that brought on a lot of anxiety and and empty ice cream containers, but always went better than expected.

We waited longer than "recommended", (which is around 4-5 months), but we finally felt like Aria was ready, and maybe moreso that we were ready to sleep train when Aria was 9 months old.
We followed a very soft version of the Ferber Method - lay baby down when they are drowsy, if they cry, let them fuss for a short amount of time, say 2-3 mins. One of us would go in, calm her down, but not pick her up, and leave the room again, waiting a little longer this time, 5-6 minutes, and then would repeat calming her down. Each time we'd leave the room, we'd wait a little longer before we went in.

Disclaimer: If at any point during sleep training you need to pour a glass of wine, go right ahead. Cheers, as I take a sip with you. Sleep training is hard. Listening to your baby cry, even for 2 minutes, is hard. Those 2 minutes feel like forever. Be strong mama, the ability for a baby to self-soothe & fall asleep on their own will make everyone happier. 

After 3-4 days she would fuss for less than 5 minutes, then would fall asleep. This was not a golden ticket though. We have had to repeat this "sleep-training" routine many times. Every few months, something would happen, a growth spurt, she'd be sick, or we'd go on vacation and our routine would be half-baked. We would have to start over in a sense, but it would only last a day or so before things were back to normal. 

We are currently heading this direction with Emerson. She was Houdini-on-repeat every time we swaddled her, so we transitioned to the Magic Merlin Sleepsuits (these are AMAZING btw). We have started our sleep-training, but it feels less strict (maybe second child syndrome?).
I'll nurse her before sleep, sometimes she's ready enough and starts to fall asleep while nursing so I'll wait until shes relaxed to lay her in the crib.
Other times, we are working with a slighly over-tired Emi and she will start grunting, kicking, wiggling around after she's done nursing. So I'll lay her in her crib to work it out. She'll grunt and fuss for 5-10 minutes and then fall asleep. If she's still awake after 20 minutes, we'll get her up and try later.


Location, Location

As far as where our babies have slept - we swear by the Rock n Play, I don't think I would have survived those first months without it. Both our girls, slept in our room, in the Rock n Play, for naps & at night for the first five months. 

After they started rolling over, we switched them to the nursery and slowly transitioned them to sleeping flat. I'll be honest, with Aria, we took a more dramatic route, haha. We propped up her crib mattress and rolled up towels laid in U shape under her crib sheet so she would have a similar cozy feel as the Rock n Play. We then slowly removed padding under the mattress to lower the incline and then removed the U-shaped towels. This really took about 3 weeks, longer than we wished, but in the end it worked. 

We switched Emerson to the nursery last month. She is a super noisy & light sleeper.. don't know how we got so lucky ;) but we HAD to switch her, so we could ALL get some sleep. Moving her from the Rock n Play was much easier. I would create a shallow V shape with two pillows and lay her down flat on our bed with the pillows pressed against her legs. I did this for naps-only for about a week, then we switched to the bassinet in the nursery for naps & at night without any problems.


Big Girl Bed

In an effort to not have to buy a second crib, we switched Aria to her 'big girl bed' last month as well. She loved her crib, but I thought if we do this right, she'll transition well. We found our toddler bed on Amazon and actually bought it while I was pregnant with Emerson, if that says anything about false hope. ;) But I decided one morning to bust it out and put it together. I made sure Aria was part of the process, bringing me things, moving around the smaller pieces, letting her know this was her new bed. She was stoked.

It was ready just in time for nap, so I moved her crib a bit and set up her new bed side by side with it. Spaces were tight, but I knew it was temporary. Napped like a champ in her toddler bed. #momwin

That night was less winning. She cried and cried for about 45 minutes over her new bed before I went in and placed her in the crib. We'll try again tomorrow.
The next day we did naptime in the toddler bed. She did cry for about 10 minutes before she accepted it and fell asleep. That night, we tried the toddler bed again. She cried for about 20 minutes before falling asleep. Victory was ours.

These were our toughest, most stress-inducing sleep issues with our girls the past few years. This is also simply what worked for us. Every baby and situation is different. Leave comments & questions at the bottom, I'd love to hear how you got your babies to sleep at night.

xoxo, McKenzie

You Might Also Like

0 comments's FREE

Powered by Blogger.