This week we're doing our own little Naptime Baby Boot Camp - Attachment Parenting Style.
What does that mean??
It means that naptimes need some work, and we're devoting this week to making some changes. We had naptimes down...but then separation anxiety kicked in. And then teething (this weekend was really tough - more on that later). Aiden used to be fine with us laying him in his crib and drifting off to sleep on his own in about five minutes. Happily. But nowadays...we're doing a lot of rocking, extra nursing, picking up and putting down, crying (well, Aiden is - sometimes I want to b/c I don't want this to be a bad experience for either of us), holding, singing, etc, etc. Not that most of that is wrong (don't want the crying, though), but it's more than what I want or Aiden really needs. Many days lately, it takes an hour to get him to sleep. Then he sleeps for half an hour. And many nights he will not allow Ryan to put him down or even rock him -when Daddy always did the bedtime routine before. If Dr. Phil were to ask us "How's that working for you?" I would have to say, well, Dr. Phil - IT'S NOT.
So, how what is Boot Camp Attachment Parenting Style exactly? It's putting a lot of effort into reteaching Aiden to go to sleep on his own - and teaching him to sleep longer...but without the CRYING, or with as little as possible. If he cries, I will pick him up and cuddle with him. I will soothe him. This will be a GOOD experience...hopefully!
How am I going to do that and be successful, you might ask? With a lot of patience. I'm working on conjuring up some of that. It's tough, but I am determined. But seriously, I've done it before, so I know it is possible. We've got the help of our favorite sleep guru, Elizabeth Pantley. I brought our book back out - The No-Cry Sleep Solution - and I checked out her No-Cry Nap Solution, too. I read that one yesterday (yes, in one day...I told you I was determined!). I've refreshed my memory about the tactics such as the Pantley Dance (to help a baby that wants to sleep in your arms be ok with being moved to the crib to sleep), the Pantley Pull Off (to help a baby that wants to nurse into a deep sleep learn to be able to fall asleep without sucking on anything), and many of her other tactics. I do know that some of them work b/c we have used them before. But we're adding a few more in with our newer habits that have recently been formed.
So, I'm sitting in Aiden's room while he sleeps his first 30 minutes, waiting to soothe him back to sleep if he wakes after that first short stint, which he usually does...hopefully soothing him back. I've done this a few times. Sometimes it works, sometimes not. When it has, he has slept up to an extra hour and a half! And he wakes up much happier. So...I know he NEEDS the sleep. Now, we just have to get him to be able to GET it. (Thirty-minute naps are NOT good enough! Yet that's his trend lately. He went from 40 minutes to thirty this past month...)
That's why we're taking this entire week and devoting it to naps. I'm clearing our schedule of everything else - no playdates, no shopping, no running errands. Nothing but focusing on our schedule and learning to nap.
How can YOU help? I have one request. If you are going to call us, please call my CELL phone and NOT the home phone. If the home phone rings, Aiden wakes right up and thinks naptime is over - even if he JUST fell asleep. I have the ring as low as it will go, and I can't turn it off b/c that is the only number the school will call if something happens with Camden. So, please...call my cell phone. If you don't have the number, email me and I'll give it to you. Thanks!!
Wish us luck!! I'll post updates along the way.