27 February 2011

Revolving Around Sleep

Sleep has been on my mind constantly for the past few weeks. Not my own- I'm actually getting pretty sufficient rest every night, amazingly. It's Lyla's sleep that has me stressing and worrying all the time (one of the first in a long line of items to worry and obsess about as a mom). At three months, she's getting older and bigger so we're talking about the transition from bassinet to crib, and full body-binding swaddle to more free sleeping.
Spending the first months in the parents' bedroom is common and it really worked for us. Lyla's room is next door to ours, but it's far enough away that multiple trips per night would make life much harder. The pack n play with bassinet has been a great choice with the changer and napper right next to each other, just 2 feet from where I sleep. She still fits in the space, but by morning she has wiggled down to the bottom with her feet propped up. She's comfortable but the day is approaching when she will no longer fit at all, so we've got to move her to her crib.

Lyla naps in her swing, and starts her evening sleep here too. We put her down around 7:15pm, then I wake her for a final meal at 9:30pm before going to sleep for the night in the bassinet. I need to start weaning her off the swinging motion to help her fall asleep. She has no trouble falling asleep in the middle of the night without it, so I'm hopeful the transition won't be too difficult. I'm just not sure how to go about it putting her down in the new, strange place.

White noise also helps Lyla fall asleep, so we've stopped using the sounds on the swing and started using the Sleep Sheep from her crib. I put it next to her on the swing so she becomes accustomed to its sounds.
As for the swaddle, this has been wonderful for calming and soothing Lyla, as well as keeping her warm at night. But the effectiveness of swaddling is much less after 3 months, and the use of her arms is important for development.

I'm happy to say we seem to have accomplished this, or so far so good! We started by leaving one arm free for a few naps. At first her arm took on a life of its own and woke her a few times, but she has grown accustom to it. Babies naturally move a lot while asleep (the swaddle restricts this which is one of the reasons it is so effective early on). Today I put her down for a nap with both arms free- I wrapped her lower body as before to keep her warm, with some mittens for warmth and to prevent any scratching of her face.

And she has been sleeping away for three hours. Victory!

I still don't know how I'm going to transition going down for the night from the swing to the crib. I've been encouraging more playtime in the crib so it becomes a familiar, more friendly place.
But I'm still pretty nervous, and am stalling a bit. To be continued. . .


  1. Sounds like you're doing a fantastic job with all of the transitions! This makes me nervous haha...I feel like I know nothing ;) She is so cute :)

  2. I knew nothing!! I'm learning as I go along, and I ask everyone I can for tips and advice. CONSTANTLY. :)