It’s been a very teary household here at Casa Iqbal. By which I mean, me. As in, 6 months of approximately no sleep on my part. All evenings began like this:
- Around 8pm little guy would grow very tired and demand to sleep, so I fed him, rocked him a touch until he’s a little drowsy but not full on passed out asleep. Take him upstairs and put him to bed where he promptly passed out.
- Until 8:45. And then, the wailing began until he was picked up, rocked and soothed back to sleep.
- Until 9:00pm.
- And so on and so forth all night long.
Yes, sometimes I got 1.5-2 hours of contiguous sleep, but mostly, just up. All night long. And as some of you kindly advised I did co-sleep with him and still do during the wee hours but sadly he’s not a quiet sleeper and hits, smacks and squirms leads to co-sleeping even when he’s latched, to be a sleep-disrupting affair.
Between caring for two kids all day, and then one kid all night, I reached the point where cry-it-out became a beautiful siren calling my name. So about two weeks ago I gave in and gave the cry-it-out monster a try. If you follow me on my facebook blog page then you know it was rough, and many of you were kind of enough to call, e-mail, comment and otherwise give me advice for the first and most awful day, and I appreciated it.
But there’s a problem. See, this is how I thought cry it out would go:
Day one: Cry Cry Cry Cry Cry
Day two: Cry Cry Cry Cry
Day three: Cry Cry Cry
Day four: Cry Cry
Day five: Cry
Day six: SNORE for a consecutive 5-6 hours
But this is not how it’s happening. Not even on the same planet of how it’s happening. You see, yes, the cry-it-out works for a little bit, as in, as a result of the cry-it-out 40 minute marathons, he does now fall asleep and stay asleep without being up every 15 minutes. But the ultimate effect of cry it out is that it has only extended his sleep to about three hours. And that 8pm-11pm stretch is ultimately his longest stretch, with him up every hour or so all night long thereafter. And around 11pm when he wake up, I feed him, and then hit repeat all night long. I’m too tired to bear the tears. At the moment he’s in our room and some of you suggested moving him out might help, but he screams bloody murder all night long even when I’m not up in the room yet, so I do’nt know if it will help. Also I’m afraid across the hall from his brother the loud screams will disrupt Waleed’s sleep leaving me with two fussy kiddos.
This sleepy mother beseeches you: Anyone reading ever been in these shoes? Do you see something I’m doing wrong in the process? Do they normally cry-cry-cry and then continue waking up? Do you just continue to make them cry-it-out all night long? How long does this last if you’ve been in these shoes? Or should I just accept my lot as an all night keg and attach an IV of caffeine to myself to function in the daylight hours [which would ofcourse serve to only keep him up longer. Sigh]. Any advice much appreciated. [And Mina, any advice you might have as I know you were in the same exact shoes and do not know how you did it.]
Edited to add: His pediatrician thought he might be hungry at night so to feed him more during the day like 6 oz of food twice a day. I felt like this was too much because I never fed Waleed that much at this stage but today, instead of the usual two cubes of baby food, he gobbled down three and then proceed to eat almost an entire mushed banana. So maybe poor kiddo was truly hungry at night? Will try again with another six ounces tonight and see if that helps.