Updated: Jan 13
What is it about sleep training, that makes us
cry, drink 3- day old tea, stay awake for 168 hours, lose friends, binge watch tv, and fall out with loved ones...
The hardest thing for me to admit when our daughter was a newborn baby was that I really did not know what I was doing. I knew I need time alone, I needed time for her, I need time to do nothing, time to cook and clean, time to study, time to cry.
By about 12 o'clock (midday) every day I was exhausted, I felt guilty, but I didn't know why. By 6 pm, I was seriously ready to implode- but I enjoy being a mummy so much that I did not really know where to draw the line??
I knew one thing, I had to stop running: I was running out of steam.
So I started a bedtime routine when she was 3 months old... at about 6 pm each day, the lights would go down, I would add lavender to our bath water, I would sing to her every night, she would listen to a story then fall asleep, Perfect.
It worked for a week until she worked out that Mummy had somehow got away for some free time.
I spent a lot of the failed nights crying, actually, no shame.
Spotify was still quite new then, so I started building playlists for myself, which helped me to stay calm and happy- then bubba (now a Boss) would start to settle. Hmmm
I tried a few more nights, where I focused on keeping myself calm, it worked. I was s worried and tense, that our daughter was almost always on high-alert making her very anxious and what I can only describe as wired... Now I know there will be a lot of families that this might not work for, especially if you are sharing a room with your little one, or they share with a sibling. If your child is unwell, they may be much more sensitive than usual, my advice is not medical, it is based solely on my own experiences and what worked with us.
Now, definitely seek professional help if you are worried that your child is not settling at all, even with a nighttime routine. Get additional support for yourself if you become unhinged at every bedtime sessions.
I had to adapt the bedtime routine when she started to outgrow her gro-bags, cot, and then toddler bed...
but the following tips really set us up for many years of holidays, family visits, date night, working, and studying from home. I have only really been able to do most of what I have achieved over the past 15 years or so because of our strict bedtime routine.
I know it sounds crazy, but I worked with 12 hours on (6 am-6 pm) 12 hours off schedule.
1) Set the bedtime you want, not when you think the baby will be tired.
2) Stick to it as much as possible, so that a late-night is a treat for a family holiday, movie night, etc...
3) Set the scene, lights, music, scents, touch, and voice (hot drink4u, out of bubba's reach). Lights down, music up, the familiar smell of mum, dad (carer), gentle touch (avoid tickling-obvs), and low voice.
4) Feed as normal (breast or bottle-your choice, sweetie)
4a) Make sure they are dry, fresh nappy, and comfortable nightwear, we used gro-bags-thinga majiggys.
5) Swaddle with breathable fabric, avoiding face being covered.
6) Use a soft toy or some form of comfort, again, your choice.
7) Then this is the hard part, leave them to sleep.
Unless the baby is in distress or pain or danger, s/he will be absolutely fine.
Oh and do ask for help and enforce bedtime, even with grandparents, the last thing that you need is setting up a routine and then having it disrupted- be polite BUTTT firm.
Would you like to talk through some of these tips and make a plan on how you can move forward?
I have tried to do it in lots of different ways, but the only thing that has brought peace is making sure I look after myself, just as well or better than I look after others, and that the things I believe (really believe- core values) become a real and valuable part of each day...
Stress and exhaustion have taught me that I do not have to be a hero.
How will you rejig your priorities to make sure you are truly looking after yourself?
Do you need some coaching around time-management and self-care?
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What do you believe?
#Christianity is the life of #God (the Creator) in human beings (that's us). What this means, practically, is that each day, you take steps to get to know this God, through His Word, the Bible (https://classic.biblegateway.com), by building a relationship with Him, through faith in Jesus Christ. In the same way, as soon as your baby is born, in fact, from the moment you "know" that you are pregnant, you spend time getting to know the baby, letting them know that each day YOU CHOOSE TO LOVE THEM
I ask you, then, would you like to be in a relationship with #God, the God of the Bible, the God that made this beautiful earth, through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ?
The God that gave Jesus Christ to us:
This the WHAT
John 3:16-18 The Message (MSG)
“This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. God didn’t go to all the trouble of sending his Son merely to point an accusing finger, telling the world how bad it was. He came to help, to put the world right again. Anyone who trusts in him is acquitted; anyone who refuses to trust him has long since been under the death sentence without knowing it. And why? Because of that person’s failure to believe in the one-of-a-kind Son of God when introduced to him."** And we (using #faith, a bit like #electricity, we know it's there because the lights come on) accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior and get to know Him each day, as we would our own dear friends, loved ones, a spouse. This is the WHY
"It’s crucial that we keep a firm grip on what we’ve heard so that we don’t drift off. If the old message delivered by the angels was valid and nobody got away with anything, do you think we can risk neglecting this latest message, this magnificent salvation? First of all, it was delivered in person by the Master, then accurately passed on to us by those who heard it from him. All the while God was validating it with gifts through the Holy Spirit, all sorts of signs and miracles, as he saw fit."**
In exchange for following Jesus, you will receive peace, freedom, joy (that's laughter whilst your awake, peace whilst you sleep), it will be hard, your friends may disown you because you've become "one of us" but guess what even if you have a tough day, you will never be alone again. Read this prayer along with me: This is your YES "Lord Jesus, thank You for giving Your life for me and forgiving me of my sins so I can have a personal relationship with You. I am sincerely sorry for the mistakes I've made, and I know I need You to help me live right. Your Word says in Romans 10:9, "If you acknowledge and confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord [recognizing His power, authority, and majesty as God], and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved." I believe You are the Son of God, and I confess You as my Saviour and Lord. Take me just as I am, and work in my heart, making me the person You want me to be. I want to live for You, Jesus, and I am so grateful to You for giving me a fresh start in my new life with You today. I love you, Jesus!"**
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