He’s so cute when he’s sleeping

Oh how the months fly by!

One minute I’m rocking a two week old newborn to sleep in my arms, next minute I’m thinking about how big my biceps must be getting from carting around 8kgs. He’s a chunky boy.

Like many new mothers, I follow the Wonder Weeks app on my phone and am very aware that my sweet little baby is now well into his fourth leap. I know the signs: He’s suddenly a lot grouchier; he’ll be the life of the party but then suddenly become withdrawn, he grabs at his toes constantly and has almost conquered the back-to-front roll, which is awesome! What’s not so awesome is that he’s also STOPPED sleeping.

Okay, he sleeps. He just doesn’t sleep as easily, as well or as long as he used to.

Gone are the days of the baby who would sleep peacefully in the lounge while I had guests over. Gone is the baby who would fall asleep on a mat while I worked out at a Mummy boot camp. Gone is the naïve mother who used to say “Oh he’s such a good sleeper”. Ha! What a joke.

The four month sleep regression is a very real thing. And I’m feeling it, in fact I’m feeling it every two hours – day and night!

After a week of severely broken sleep, I’d had enough. I pulled out all my aces: The swaddle, the white noise, the darkened room. My son has refused to take a dummy since day one, so unfortunately that’s wasn’t viable, but everything else, you name it, I tried it.

I also started to limit his day naps and lengthen his feed times. It feels so mean, waking him up, but I can say confidently that his night sleeps are finally starting to get longer. While I’m not a believer in strict routine, I am a believer in a good night’s sleep - so we’re working toward a 45 minute morning and afternoon nap, a two hour lunchtime nap and a 12 hour night time nap.

I’ll admit I’m yet to crack that last one. But my four month old slept 10 hours last night with a 10 minute feed in the middle. That’s a huge improvement!

I plan to stick to this routine as much as possible, but allow for hiccups, misadventures and a flexible schedule (okay, coffee dates and gym classes). Because after all, the routine is for the parent, right? Not the baby. Your little one doesn’t know anything about a sleep routine. All your baby knows is how to be a baby.

I’d love to hear your opinions and techniques on infant sleep. Perhaps you’ve been blessed with a night sleeper from day one, or perhaps you’ve tried everything in the books and your baby still won’t sleep. Whatever the case, Hit me up!

At the end of the day, a baby’s gotta baby, but hey, a mama’s gotta sleep at some point too!

Rachel Chen