Toddler Sleeping (Or Non-Sleeping)
By Lisa Bullard
Ember has now slept through the night 3 times...
...in her 18 month life – not 3 nights in a row, but rather once every few months we get a joyous surprise when we wake up, look at the clock, see it is 3 AM, 4AM, 5AM, 6AM and she is still asleep! But her more typical night involves random wakings, where she needs one of us to soothe her in some way back to sleep.
I know that sleep experts says, stop soothing her!
She needs to learn to fall asleep on her own! Well, I challenge those sleep experts to come to my house for a week and give it a try. She will defy them. I am sure. I have (too) many sleep books all worn out from being fretted over, pages marked, read and reread. None of their methods worked.
It’s getting easier.
She wakes up less often and needs less when she does wake, but don’t get me wrong - it’s still hard. For my little family, the most effective solution we have found so far is to do whatever it takes for each one of us to get the most sleep possible, and that's a moving target.
My younger self would never have guessed that sleep would be tied to my mothering identity.
But somehow, it is. My self-confidence wavers.
At a low, usually at a particularly sleep deprived point, I am very sensitive to judgment. I prickle when I sense people assume that if we only did this thing or that thing she would be sleeping by now.
But during a self-confident high, I know that we know our daughter best and know what does and doesn’t work for her and that we are all doing our best, including Ember.