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There is hope!

(9 Posts)
Estrellita Thu 20-Mar-14 20:11:50

I've hesitated posting this as I didn't want to jinx it, but DD, who has just turned 2 is finally sleeping through, reliably. Every night, from 8-8.

This is the baby who was utterly, utterly put downable from birth and who has struggled with sleep as I never even dreamed a child could since day one.

From birth to 4 months she had terrible colic and reflux, and could only sleep upright, so DH and I took it in shifts.

Colic went and reflux improved around 6 months, she started doing very short stints in her bedside cot, maybe an hour or two at a time.

Again, we took it in shifts, and would usually co-sleep half the night.

She was night weaned and moved to her own room at a year old, but neither made much difference, was still waking often, on a bad night every hour or two. On a good night, maybe just 2-3 times.

We did not want to do cc, but did try more gentle methods of sleep training, No Cry Sleep Solution (not without tears) and gradual withdrawal, which was hell. Pure hell. Tweaking and tweaking and tweaking of routines. Checked for medical issues...nothing. More tweaking. More crying, more stress, more exhaustion, still no sleep.

Then finally a couple of months ago she started saying "sleep" and "cot" and running into her room at bedtime to get in. No rocking, no feeding. She does like her lullaby music on though and for her dad to sit by the cot and hold her hand. She settles in about 10-20 minutes and then 9 nights out of 10 does a solid 12 hours. It's like a switch has been flipped...

So just wanted to share this for those in the throes of hardcore sleep deprivation, whose children are not responsive to sleep training and who are just doing whatever they can to manage, day by day, night by night.

There is a light at the end of the tunnel, there is hope!

GingerMaman Thu 20-Mar-14 20:17:40

Thank you for sharing this. My DD is 10 months and sounds similar to yours, but she has allergies too. Currently it's every hour or every two hours, and I'm exhausted. I'm really hoping there is a light at the end of the tunnel ...

Estrellita Thu 20-Mar-14 20:31:19

I can hardly believe it myself! Just wanted to share for those struggling.

My DD has allergies too - egg, milk, soy and nuts. She has 2 cups of Nutramigen formula a day and 1-2 short bf most days. I had to cut all allergens out of my diet when she was 2 months old. She is getting retested next week, I'm hoping that her immunocaps will show that she has outgrown at least some allergies. I would save a fortune in moving her onto soy milk from nutramigen if I could. Soy was the borderline one at her 13 month test. Fingers crossed...

I don't think sleep was allergy related as we have been quite cautious in avoiding allergens. My instinct is more of a neurological thing. It seems like she just had to get to a certain developmental stage for her brain to manage sleeping more than 2-3 hours at a time. Nothing we could do could force it along. And believe me, we tried...

Hope that your DD will get to this place before mine did!

LearnerM0ther Sun 23-Mar-14 07:16:31

There is a God! Thanks for sharing. I so so so hope this happens with our 17-18 month old..
Half 5 this morning, godammit (we start by settling him in his cot, he co-sleeps for the second portion as I just cannot drag myself out of bed in the night anymore and now he's going through one of his early waking stages - teeth? Getting earlier and earlier by the day. It's nice and dark in the room so it's not that..)
He also had terrible reflux, intolerance to milk etc. I am EXHAUSTED. And I keep thinking we can't be far off a big change.
Just curious, has your LO got all her bastarding teeth?? The T word is like a cuss in our house, they bugger up any headway you make.

LearnerM0ther Sun 23-Mar-14 07:24:09

P.S. Congratulations. It must be absolutely GLORIOUS. :0)

Estrellita Sun 23-Mar-14 14:44:43

Sorry to hear you are still in the thick of it Learner. I am waiting for it all to go tits up but it's been a few months now and oh my God, the SLEEP! It is glorious indeed. Re teeth, DD hasn't cut her second set of molars yet, so we might be in for a relapse once they start coming through. But will enjoy the rest while it lasts. She did 8-8 last night, and even came in the bed for a cuddle til 9. Bliss...

I seriously thought the sleep deprivation was going to last well into toddlerhood, if not school age. I am prone to insomnia and was also a horrendous sleeper as a child, so I think I know where she got it from.

Hope your DS will sleep soon. The month or so before DD had her big change was horrific. Multiple wake ups, really hard to settle. Even co sleeping was impossible as she would just wiggle and kick and climb off the bed. God knows why. Nothing we did made much difference.

She would have given any sleep trainer a run for their money. Never got past the first stage of gradual withdrawal as she would just stand in the cot and cry and get all hysterical with panic. Would do pick up / put down to exhaustion, and finally she'd crash out after 3 hours or so. Only to wake 2 hours later for another round. Repeat 3 to 4 more times through the night and you get the idea. I always broke after a week or so, as the length of crying time never decreased, and the sleep periods never got any longer. Just couldn't keep putting her through that.

It's weird, she just seemed to change overnight...can't explain it at all!

LearnerM0ther Mon 24-Mar-14 14:45:00

That's great news, what a nice big kip!
We've just managed to teach him to fall asleep by himself, with us just standing there. It's far preferable to physically restraining him to sleep (risking injury). He grew to hate being swayed and then we were up Shit Creek.. These bubbas, once you think you know what works they change again!!
To be honest, I'm not totally convinced that it's not still the reflux waking him.. He's not in pain with it anymore but I can HEAR stuff washing up. Poor lamb. I'm gonna wait till the last 4 are through (teething aggravates it) and if I still think he's waking up swallowing and wanting to sit bolt upright, I'm gonna have to really get tough with his paediatrician! Hey ho. One day they'll be teenagers and we'll be begging them to get their arse out of bed and off to school :0)

Estrellita Mon 24-Mar-14 17:46:17

Definitely get the reflux rechecked - my Dd's was gone before age one, but trust your instincts. It's very possible that may be keeping him up at night. You've got to be tough with the Drs and rule absolutely all medical issues out. Hope he feels better soon and there will be more rest for all of you.

LearnerM0ther Wed 26-Mar-14 07:17:58

Thanks very much Estrellita.

I'm going to ring his paediatrician TODAY to book an appointment to discuss a barium swallow, I think. Not immediately, but after he has all his teeth (or maybe before if they take too long!)
He has never had a 'test' but his was severe - 20mg of Omeprazole was needed.. I'm curious to see just how often he still refluxes. I've been told by the dietician to keep him on 20oz of Nutramigen until he can have some dairy, I'm sure that's not helping!
It's all so complicated and since he stopped screaming in pain, I feel we've been cut adrift. Whether we get a nights sleep is no concern of theirs apparently! We take it in turns to catch up but LO is lucky to get 12 hours in a 24 hour period and is almost always tired as a result, poor sod.

Mummy's gotta kick some ass!!

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