Sleep Training Number 5 (or 6??)

Has it really been almost a month since my last post? Obviously, we’ve been really busy around here. Earlier this month, I singlehandedly took Benji on a nearly 8 hour plane ride to Singapore (and back). It was actually less scary than I thought it would be, although it was still very exhausting. Thankfully, he slept a little on our flight over and for the most of the journey back (thank you, Phenergan!). The 10 days we spent there were (as always) amazing! I wish we could spend more time with the folks, and in Singapore!

Anyway, this post is really to update you about Benji’s sleep. We have had a history of terrible sleeps with Benji, especially nighttime ones. If you’ve read some of my earlier posts, you would know that we attended sleep school (which he flunked), Ferbered him numerous times, ignored, and read extensively on how to get our little man to sleep through the night. Each successful training period would very quickly be undone by sickness, and the most recent one, affected by his 12 month vaccinations done back in the end of November, all the holiday activities and travels, and a change in his daytime sleep patterns (2naps->1nap).

In the two weeks since we returned from Singapore, Benji went from waking up twice a night, to waking up nearly every hour. Very familiar – we last experienced that back sometime in August, where it got to the point where he was waking up once every sleep cycle (40 mins). This time, Bry tried Ferbering him (which got him to vomit), patting him, and camping out, but to no avail. We were exhausted and frustrated.

Finally, we decided to show tough love once again, and this time went with the Extinction method, starting three nights ago out of sheer frustration, at 4am. I remembered this moment vividly, as Bry kept getting cold feet, wanting to go in, only to be held back by my exhausted, half mumbles “just let him cry a bit more.” This “bit” turned dragged on until about 40 minutes later, when Benji stopped crying and put himself to sleep. It was a miracle.

The next night, he cried for about 15 minutes before sleeping, ON HIS OWN. He still woke up about 3 times in the night and whinged slightly, but each time, was able to put himself back to sleep within 10-15 minutes. Tonight, he cried for about 5 minutes before sleeping, once again, ON HIS OWN. How will he go for the rest of tonight? I’m not sure, but I have a strong feeling it won’t be as bad as it was pre-sleep training. Perhaps the previous sleep trainings helped him grasp the concept of self-soothe more easily. Or, maybe he’s more ready now than he was before. Whatever it is, we are thrilled and grateful that he’s sleeping better.

Now, fingers crossed he doesn’t get sick too soon after, so Bry and I can enjoy a few nights of good rest to catch up!

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5 comments
  1. Fen. said:

    A sleeping baby is a wonderful sight! I find that if we are in the same room, Caleb won’t sleep as fast than if he is alone.

    • the speech monster said:

      Yup, us, too!! But day #3 and he’s fallen asleep so quickly!

  2. I am glad the Extinction method is working so well for you. We have been too terrified to try any sleep training and instead have been co sleeping, which has been working well.

    • the speech monster said:

      Ah! I forgot to add that we also tried co sleeping, but that didn’t quite work out for us either as he is quite a restless sleeper and keep flopping about in bed, kicking and slapping us. ;-)

      • Oh no! That does not sound like fun at all. I can see why you did not stick with it!

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