Saturday, May 8, 2010

The Plan


I think I have our sleep plan somewhat outlined. Some of this - trying to follow a schedule and trying to feed her as much as possible during the day - we are already doing. Some of it we've done in pieces. May 20th this starts as a comprehensive Sleep Coaching Program.


Preparation:

Room darkening curtains for my room (where we are now) (DONE) and her room (where we hope to end up.)

Get good naps out of her for two days before starting, no matter how you have to get her to do it.

During the day, develop positive bedroom and crib associations. Playtime in the room and in the crib - peek-a-boo, find the bear, books, etc. (Working on this - but she cries if you lay her in her crib for a diaper change.)

Make a "sleep book" to read at bedtime and talk about the upcoming transition. (This is a suggestion for toddlers a little older than my wee one is now - 18 months is the group that suggestion is supposed to help. But even if it doesn't help, it definitely can't hurt.)

Her Routine:

Wake her at 7:00 or 7:30, and have breakfast by 8:00 or 8:15. Morning nap 2 hours after getting up for 1 hour, afternoon nap 3 hours after the first nap for 1.5 hours. Dinner 5:00-6:00, bedtime 7:30-8:00.

Upon waking, have a Big Wake Up. Sing the Wake Up Song and throw open the curtains, to help her learn about morning waking.

Expose her to full-spectrum light in the early afternoon to help set her sleep-wake cycles.

Brush teeth before bath, so if she protests, she isn't getting worked up after a relaxing bath.

Begin to do as much of the bedtime routine as possible in her room. Put on diaper and pajamas, nurse, sing songs, quiet play, read books. Then move into my room just for the "go to bed" part. (Doing this now)

Night wean to one "set-time" feeding (probably 4 am, since that's her big night nursing now) and then eliminate that one. Instead of nursing back to sleep, do the back patting to get her to go back to sleep.  I love that the article is supportive of family bed night weaning.

Once she goes to sleep in my bed, I will sleep in the other room for 3 nights. Then we will put a mattress on the floor in her room, and we will both sleep there for 3 nights. Then for 3 nights, once she goes to sleep I will sleep in the other room. After that transition to her sleeping alone in her room on a mattress, I will start to put her to bed in her crib. I think I may do 3 nights of rocking her to sleep and putting her in the crib pretty much asleep, and then try to move to putting her down "drowsy but awake". At that point I will do the gradual extinction where I sit in a chair next to her bed for 3 nights, then move the chair halfway to the door for 3 nights, then at the doorway for 3 nights, then outside the door for 3 nights.

(Yes, I am aware that this 3-nights thing now takes me almost into July. But I want to do GRADUAL.)

That's what I've put together from all my reading so far. Suggestions are always welcome! I'll keep everyone posted on our progess.

2 comments:

Funky Mama Bird said...

We do much of that, the room darkening, the big wake up, good naps. Bedtime routine that links a bunch of positives together.

I can recommend a bedtime book to read. Time For Bed by Mem Fox and Jane Dyer.

We read it every night after another book, and he LOVES it. Gets upset if we don't read it, and he associates it with bed; he will frequently bring Goodnight Moon over to me to read during the day, and I may read him other books, but if I bring out Time For Bed before tubby time, he gets upset.

Good luck!

Billy said...

Good luck!