I contacted Linda after 17months of broken sleep and 2weeks in particular of EXTREMELY bad nights and I felt exhaustede and resentful of all my friends who had sleeping children. If I had a newborn I’d be getting more sleep.
After emailing Linda she invited me to attend a sleep clinic she held. She advised me that Reece had become dependant on milk and couldnt sleep without it (he went to sleep with a bottle every night) and encouraged me to introduce a ‘magic light’ so as Reece learnt he could not get milk until the light came on at 4am. She also suggested we get rid of the dummy (which gave me palpatations!) as he is very dependant on it. I felt had a real support from Linda as she advised me to text her each mornung and we would talk on Tuesday (5 days later) and she really struck a chord with me when she said “its not going to be easy but you’re not going to be more tired than you are now,” she was right, I couldnt continue as I was so off home I went feeling confident….
His big sister was to sleep in our room,the children normally share a room, and somehow she sleeps through everything, but I was nervous about disturbing the quality of her sleep so Linda suggested that as she is a good sleeper, we should let her have a treat and sleep in our room , on a mattaress on the floor until Reece’s sleep improved. I’d spoken to Reece about not getting milk to go to sleep. (Linda says it is very imprtant, no matter what age the child is, we shuld always explain what is going to happen ! So no bottle to go to bed with, instead at bedtime I gave him 5oz of warm milk in a beaker with which he was not impressed, only sipping it periodically! I put him in bed with a supply of dummies his teddies and said goodnight. of course instantly he was up on his feet crying with everything getting thrown out the cot! Linda had suggested we leave him for ten minutes, with the door slightly ajar, so he could hear us putting his sister to bed, and did not feel abandoned, it was hell listening to him screaming but I knew it was temper, with lots of moral support from my partner I stayed strong: setting my alarm on my phone so as I didnt go in before the 10 minutes. When I looked in after 10 minutes i picked up his dummies and told him it was bedtime. After half an hour he was still screaming but lying down and another 10 minutes later he was asleep! I went to bed apprhensive sure of an unsettled night, I heard Reece at 2.55am went in and told him it was bedtime, next thing I knew it 5.55am! Then he had 8oz milk and that was Reece until 7.40am. A successful first night!
After a good night I had gone to the shops to purchase my magic light and as we were out and about Reece only had about 45mins so was v tired come bedtime. He went down and I set the 10minute timer and after 10 minutes repeated what I had done the night before and I only had to go in once! Reece didnt wake until 6am!!he had 8oz milk and I actually ended up waking him at 9am!! this is unheard of for Reece and hopefully hes not sickening for something. Tommorow will tell! Have now decided to set magic light for 5am.
He seems to be ok today! daytime naps are going well some crying before he settles and he is having an hour and half each day as advised by Linda untill his night time routine settles down. He went down tonight with no tears! He woke at 9.30pm crying for 20minutes and ‘Im beginning to find it easier to ignore the tears (which I know is just temper!) and that was him untill…6.55am! yippee!
Was a day with Grandma (who had been told to follow the new routine and did so!) but struggled to waken him after his nap! Going down for the night he cried for some time and was really rather unsettled during the night wakening avery couple of hours crying before getting milk at 5.20am which is the earliest it’s been since I started the new routine, I stuck to the same guide just popping in telling him it was bedtime and to lie down-which he did most times. Felt like i’ve gone backwards but text Linda who gives me words of encouragement, asking me to assess the previous day if anything was different.Went to work very tired!
Reece’s teddy is in the washing so he is away to bed not a happy bunny! screamed for almost an hour! He then woke at 12.30am and 4am standing up screaming for about 15-20minutes each time!Again I stuck to everything I was advised by Linda he then woke for the day at 7am but did not wake up in a good mood! He went for a sleep at my mums after nursery but didnt get his full hour and a half as Linda had said either the hour and a half or 2.30pm whichever came first so today he only had about an hour and ten minutes so will see in the morning if this has any effect.
No it never!! He is definitly better at settling at night but was up at 12 and four and has now started a ridiculous high pitched scream which terrified his sister! and then up for milk at 6 before waking at 7.40 So its not even the milk hes wakening for!
Oh..My..God worst night of thye new routine yet!! Down at 7pm then awake at 12, 2, 3, 4, 6 for milk and then 8.30!! Im begining to lose hope but a supportive call from Linda gets me back on track, she says its now time to get rid of the dummy- this is my crutch and scares the living daylights out of me! I tell her Im so exhausted that I may not start tonight and she encourages me to sart when I feel ready.We were going to go complete cold turkey but decide, to help me, that we would use the magic light, so no dumy until the magic light came on ! so as I knew when I got desperate at 5am I would be saved! and i could still use the dummy for daytime sleeps but no other times! so after our phone call for the rest of the day he only got the dummy at bedtime as if Im honest he usually gets it when he wants or will find one so I searched the house and hid them in a little bag.
Im glad I didnt start the change in routine as he slept until 5.30 drank his milk cried on and off for an hour then slept till 8.50am so I feel refreshed (kind of) ready to start the no dummy approach. Again he hasnt had it all day only for his nap and I dunno if I’m imagining things but i think I notice in his behaviour he doesnt seem as whiney ad tired yes there are times when he’s been looking for his dummy but Im ready for tonight-I am scared though!!
Well…I actually cant believe he did it!! he screamed for half an hour then fell asleep!! I was so shocked-almost emotional! he woke at 9.30 screaming for 10 minutes and that was him till 6am!! he then got his dummy and milk and nodded back off untill 8.30!!
We had a repeat perfrormance still the screaming when he goes down at 7 but then slept through untill 6am and slept untill 7.30.
Reece went down again at 7 crying for 15mins and he woke at about 5.15 got his milk and dummy he went quiet untill 6 but not sure if he went back to sleep, but this is the earliest he’s risen in a wee while.
We continue with down at 7 still quite a lot of crying before he settles generally up at 5 for his milk and dummy then will leep till between 7 and 8.
Uh oh!! we’ve gone back a step! screaming and when I say screaming top of the lungs temper tantrum I had two doors shut and a pillow on my head and I can still hear him! Its like clock work at 4.20! until the magic light goes on. I call Linda in desperation! She advises me its time to….ditch the milk over three nights and then the DUMMY! I knew it was coming but still is a scary prospect but Linda believes in me and I know she’s always at the end of the phone.
Okay so i couldnt do it! he woke up and I gave him his dummy at 5 but he was still very restless and stirring so at 6 I gave him 5oz of milk and he slept untill 7.45
He has a sleep over at Grandmas and generally does the same. phew!
Its my mum who suggest I put him down without a dummy for his afternoon nap and after some tears he falls asleep for his nap!! and then that night he wakes at 5.40 so I give him his milk and he sleep till 6.45! Im so happy!
To be continued !