It's working, it's working, it's working!
If you have babies, young children, or even teenagers that are having sleep issues, this book is a fantastic resource.
Once Dr. Stafford got us started, James almost immediately started sleeping through the night. However, his daytime naps were still a fight, didn't last longer than 40 minutes, and sometimes only 20. That first hour and a half nap, I think, was a 'crash'.
Dr. Weissbluth's advice for too-short naps is to implement an extremely early bedtime temporarily (between 5:30 and 6:30) and then during the day, don't let your baby get overtired before putting them down for a nap. I already knew not to let James become overtired, but I had my sleep cues mixed up. Here's a chart, copied straight from pg. 63, to help discern if you're entering into the 'overtired zone' (NOT a good place to be):
- decreased activity
- slower motions
- less vocal
- sucking is weaker or slower
- appears disinterested in surroundings
- eyes are less focused (staring off)
- eyelids drooping
- yawningBecoming Overtired:
- rubbing eyes
I kept waiting until he was fretful and rubbing his eyes before starting to put him down, but that only led to LOTS of crying. He was too overtired to settle himself down! This morning, he woke up at 6:45 (happily, I might add) and I watched for the drowsy signs. He was playing on the floor (again, not something he would have been happy about before) and I saw a yawn and then staring off for a moment. He started playing again, but I didn't want to risk it, so I scooped him up, stuck in his pacifier, and rocked him for about 2 minutes. It felt so weird, because he looked awake and alert. But, wouldn't you know it, I laid him in his crib and he fell asleep 3 minutes later. And get this. WITH NO CRYING.
Unreal. I can hardly believe that this is my child.
Every baby is different, and I'm sure that some babies' cues are black and white and others' are not as easy to read. I wish I had learned to read his sleepy cues earlier and saved him a lot of uncomfortable overtired-ness! Momma's sorry, sweet James. Part of being the first-born, hate to say. :)