So after listening to Adam scream himself to sleep because I’d stupidly decided to get in the bath once he’d gone down for his nap I decided why not write about his current sleep routine! Now I’m sat here, hair still dripping wet and dressed in my pyjamas because I don’t want to now go in the room and risk disturbing him, feeling like the world’s shittest human being I’m thinking about his current sleep routine and how well it works for us.
It’s in no way, shape or form the best sleep routine and I’m not going to sit here and gloat about how amazing every night is because he sleeps through until morning as this isn’t always the case but I’ve read a lot of sleep related posts recently and figured why not write my own.
Adam turned one in January and so he’s coming up to 14 months in a week or two but we’ve been very consistent with his sleep routine from way back when he was about 4-5 months. I do believe that’s helped us immensely when it’s come to how well he sleeps however every night is different and if you throw in a bit of teething or this nasty cold we’ve all been lovingly passing around to each other for about 8 weeks now, we have had a fair few sleepless nights of screams and tantrums.
What has taken me too long to understand is that no matter how wonderful your routine is and how amazing you think your parenting choices are, no one day will ever be the same as the next. Something will always change and throw a huge spanner in your works and you have to learn to roll with that. Now for somebody like me who likes her routine and freaks out at any deviation from that, this is a hard concept to comprehend sometimes when it’s the middle of the night and you’re screaming to yourself ‘But you slept all night last night?!’ ‘Why are you up at 3am?!’ But i’m slowly adapting to the fact that babies don’t come with instruction manuals and rule books, they just come with in built human instinct to rely solely on you for their physical and emotional nourishment and that should make you feel superhuman!
That’s not to say routines don’t work, I absolutely believe they do because with routine comes stability and the norm. My baby knows that no matter how hectic our day has been once he goes up at 6.30pm for his bath he will be in bed soon after and I know he enjoys living in the knowledge that certain events will eventually lead to sweet slumber in his own cot where GENERALLY he will sleep peacefully until the morning. I know that he loves his routine as much as we do because whenever we do decide to cut out his bath in order to spend a bit more time in the evening or when daddy comes home late from work and wants to see him before he goes to bed, he never settles as well and I think the bath in the evening helps him unwind.
So just recently he’s cut out one of his day naps and only has the one nap during the mornings unless he’s in the car or out in his pushchair. It’s hard to gauge whether he still needs that second nap because when he did he became a nightmare to wind down in the evenings and would basically chew my nipples off through share boredom because he wasn’t tired enough to fall asleep. I still breastfeed him to sleep which isn’t ideal but he can be rocked to sleep or given a bottle if needs be. Sometimes I wish I didn’t have to feed him to sleep but it works for us and he only has the one feed in the evening to send him off for the night. Most nights I’ll feed him and have him in bed by 8pm and we won’t hear from him again until about 7.30-8am.
For now this is the routine that’s working for us and because I feel he still needs a milk feed before bed I guess this will continue for a little while yet, I mean if it ain’t broke don’t fix it right?! I think if he was still waking in the night for feeds I’d definitely be looking for other ways to put him to sleep but as he doesn’t I’m enjoying the evening feed and cuddle time. Any advice for when we do decide to wean him from the breast? I’d love to hear your thoughts and sleep routine tips.