If you’re anything like me, a Type A, psycho of a parent when it comes to your baby’s sleep, I am here to help you cope by sharing a bit of professional help and advice from my best friend and biggest supporter, Dr. Google.
What I googled: How much should my baby sleep?
What Google said: Something about waking the baby (insane) to eat, trying to get them on an “internal clock” where they understand day and night (ludicrous).
What Google should have said: Your baby has just gone through some serious trauma. It was squeezed through a tiny trap door and plunged into cold water then scrubbed with a bristle brush. Yowza! Relax and let baby sleep as much as they want, whenever they want. They are growing at rapid rates and quite frankly wants to be back in that warm dark place where everything was comfy. Hold, rock, and feed. Let baby sleep! And use all of that Type A personality to obsessively love on baby.
What I googled: When will my baby STTN (sleep through the night)?
What Google said: Because most baby's startle reflex starts to decrease significantly by 4 months, you can expect your baby to start sleeping 8 hour stretches from this point forward. If not, let them cry, they will learn. If that does not work call your pediatrician and complain.
What Google should have said: Breast milk digests in 2 hours, formula takes about 3-4 hours. A baby growing at supersonic speed is a hungry mo-fo. Get back to holding, feeding, and loving. Check back with me in another 3-6 months and then we can start a casual conversation around STTN.
What I googled: When should I start my baby on a sleep schedule?
What Google said: You’re late. If you were a good mother, you would have started this out of the womb. You’re a disorganized pushover for a parent. Good luck…
What Google should have said: IMHO - Download an app like "Moms On Call," enter your baby’s age and take a look at what the experts recommend. Start to create some sort of semblance of an "eat, sleep, play" schedule around the times recommended in conjunction with what works for you and your baby. Pay close attention to their sleep patterns and sleep cues. Good news for us Type A's. Schedule = sanity!
What I googled: When will my baby stop night feeding?
What Google said: Say, what? Your baby is still waking to feed at night? This must be stopped right away. You are allowing your baby to form bad habits that can last a lifetime. Now, go out and buy ear plugs, lock your baby in a room and let them CIO (cry it out) going forward.
What Google should have said: My thoughts are, whenever you stop feeding baby at night. When a baby this age wakes and requests a nipple (flesh or synthetic) they do not necessarily NEED it but if you give, they will take. If you do not, there is no choice. Some may roll over and go to sleep, others may wail. This is when they may really need it. You to decide what to do next. Note that I happened to love the middle of the night feeding (understand this is singular not plural). As a working mom, who was not around during the day, this allowed for some serious bonding. And because I did not object, my daughter had at least one night nurse until 14 months. Upon her own accord, one night, she did not wake to eat and has STTN since (mostly).
What I googled: How can I get my 18 mo old to sleep in later than 5am? And as she is waking at 5am every golly gosh day, how do I get her to stay awake long enough to make it to afternoon nap so that she can keep her 1 nap a day schedule? And how do I get that nap to be longer than an hour so that she is not totally wasted by 5pm? PS: Does she reaaally need 14 hours of sleep because we’re lucky if she get 12 hours and I fear she may grow up to be a serial killer...
What Google said: Get a life.
I sometimes agree with Google…
Note: This is all coming from the thoughts and opinions of one mother (me), not a medical professional...