“Does he sleep through the night?”

How many times have I lied when people asked me that question!

Sometimes it feels like the number one goal of the first year of baby’s life is to get him to sleep. And stay asleep. I was always pretty laid back about the whole sleep issue. Boo-Boo slept well when he nursed to sleep. He also slept in the car on in the stroller or Ergo. I didn’t worry too much about sleeping through the night until about a month ago. I just felt like after a year, I wanted a full night of sleep and I needed to help him get that too.

We co-sleep and don’t really want to stop that so I’m looking for gentle ways to help him stay asleep throughout the night. I started doing a little research about different sleep methods. I heard everything from “let them cry it out” to “they will do it when they are ready.” I tend to agree more with the latter than the former. But still I felt like I could do something differently. I scanned the Dr. Sears sleep book one evening at Barnes & Noble and read several blogs and child rearing websites. There was something I wasn’t doing: a schedule.

I guess I resisted having a schedule with Boo-Boo because I’ve never liked them myself. When I was teaching elementary school I hated the laminated daily schedule that hung on the board. I stuck to it because I knew it was good for my students. Now it’s time to do it for my own child.

I stumbled upon this interesting post about Circadian rhythms and decided to try it out. This is the first post in what will hopefully be a short series about getting my babe to sleep. Right now, I’m not concerned with how he gets to sleep. He can nurse or fall asleep in Daddy’s arms (when I’m not in sight!). My initial goal is to get him to connect his sleep cycles and stay asleep from night till morning.

Last night, I put him to bed at the first signs of sleepiness, which happened around 8:30. He woke up and nursed around 12:30 and then again around 7:00. Not bad, right? I’m assuming that the 7:00 nursing is in line with his natural wake-up time and just because I didn’t want to get out of bed doesn’t mean it’s still nighttime.

Now, please, flood me with your advice and encouragement!

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