Our twins are great sleepers. They sleep 12-14 hours a night. It is rare that they wake up and cry. Ever. This wasn’t always the case. For the first six months of their life they woke up every three hours like clockwork to eat. It would take an hour to feed them, and then another half hour to change them, re-swaddle, and then get them back to sleep. Do the math, and you will see that I only got to sleep in 1.5 hour stretches at a time. It was a difficult six months. That is an understatement. Life without sleep is torture.
Before Brielle, Alex, and Charlie were born we had a foster daughter. Brielle was actually born while we had her.
We had our foster daughter for 15 months. We got her when she was 7 weeks old. By three months old she was only waking once or twice in a twelve hour stretch. She was a very good baby all around. Happy, sweet, and with a very good disposition in general. Brielle was much like our foster daughter in that she was a great sleeper very early on. No sleep training methods needed for either of them!
The twins were completely different than the girls. They did not want to sleep on their own. They were in rock and play bassinets for their first 6 months of life, right next to my bed. I pulled their bassinets right next to me, so that I could reach over and soothe them or give them a pacifier if they woke up between feedings. Which they did, and they did often. Did I mention the first 6 months with them were rough??
Sleep Training Made Us ALL Happier
It all changed after sleep training. I was very hesitant to try anything other than the soothe method. I was not a fan of the cry it out. However, I was at my wits end and their doctor said that since they were on solid food they should and could be sleeping through the entire night. She suggested just trying to let them cry it out, but only for a half hour at a time. Guess what? They both stopped crying in less than 30 minutes and it took less than 2 weeks. By the two week mark they were sleeping 12-14 hours straight in their own cribs and in their own rooms! It was life changing for me.
Once the babies were moved into their cribs Brielle moved into a big girl bed. She did fine with the transition at first, but after a few months she realized she could get herself out of bed, come downstairs, and crawl into our bed. A year later and it was still happening, regardless of what we tried. Every. Single. Night.
A Special Clock Changed Everything
Over a month ago a friend told me about “My Tot Clock”. www.mytotclock.com It is a simple clock that allows parents to program it’s timer to have the clock face change colors when it is night and when it is daytime, which lets small children know when it is time to stay in bed and when it is time to get up. It plays songs at bedtime and in the morning when the color changes to daytime it also plays happy wake up music. Brielle loves her new clock. Even better is that it works!! Since the day we got it she has stayed in bed until the music goes off. It worked for her from the very first night we put it in her room! We explained that the clock would let her know when it was ok to come downstairs. It worked! Every morning at 7am we hear the clock and she cheers “I did it! I stayed in my bed all night!” We praise her and tell her how proud we are of her that she stayed all night in her own bed.
Sleep is essential to function. It is the way we recharge our bodies and minds. I am so grateful I now get more restful, uninterrupted sleep at night!
Psalm 30:5 “For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime; weeping may stay for the night, but rejoicing comes in the morning”.
The joy becomes even greater when it has been a good night of sleep and rest. Regardless of good or bad nights, as we will still have nights when kids wake us at night, but joy comes in the morning. God gives us that joy! Joy for so many reasons including having these children to raise for another day and being a family together to love and enjoy all that God has given us by having one another.