I love to watch the littles sleeping. They are so peaceful and cuddly…
What I can’t get over is how they approach sleep in such different ways! Goose is our little sleeper. She was a great napper from the start, slept through the night at an early age , and continues to nap every day. We tried to change her routine and drop her down to one nap when she went to daycare, but she would have nothing to do with it and napped despite us. Even in a room full of her rambunctious playmates, she would nap. Other than when we have messed things up for her, she has missed one nap. One. EVER.
I am pretty sure that her first sentence, at about a year was “Mommy, book then sleepy” as she dragged me up the stairs to her room. When she wakes in the night, she just sings her songs until she gets back to sleep, covering herself up with the blankets before she drifts off.
When she wakes in the morning, she plays some more. Some days there are songs, or animated conversations with Baby and Olivia, the dolls that keep her company, and sometimes her brother crawls into her crib and they play together. Most days she is just happily reading alone when we go to get her. “I don’t want to get up”, she says. We reach in to get her, but she flops down and feigns sleep. Like her father, Goose loves her sleep.
Woo, on the other hand, was my problem sleeper. I am convinced that we spoiled him as a newborn, and he thought that you needed to be held to sleep. That was all we did for the first two months, cuddle him and hold him while he slept. When Willy went back to work there were things that needed doing, so I tried to put him down to sleep. It didn’t work. I tried many a thing to get him to nap, but he fought sleep. Many a time he would be falling asleep and shake his head to wake himself up, like someone who has the nods in a meeting. The only thing that really worked was rocking for a long time, then setting him in the crib and hoping it stuck. For more than 35 minutes. We did this for a year, when he was physically too big (at 32 lbs) to continue doing this.
He magically started napping at this point, and one day even napped for over three hours. I remember the day well, as I checked his breathing every three minutes for the last half of that nap. I was sure there was something wrong with him, what baby sleeps for three hours, in a row?! The bliss was short-lived. He gave up his at home naps entirely three days after his baby sister came home from the hospital. I was not ready for them to end, but they did.
We were lucky to have him sleep through the night at an early age too. There were even a few months where he slept for twelve straight hours, until the teething messed all that up. He needed attention when he woke in the night, still does. I remember hours of cuddles and songs until he was back in a deep sleep. The big boy bed helped here, as we could get into bed with him. This often led to him sleeping on top of me, with his face pressed against mine. Not the most comfortable solution, but it worked.
Unfortunately, moving him to a bed moved sleep avoidance to a whole new level. We’ve finally gotten to a nice routine where he will stay in bed most nights, but it evolves and we have to figure out a new routine. We move are considering moving Goose to her big girl bed this weekend. She is ready and wants it, as do we. Wonder what changes this will bring.