I was pretty nervous about Night 2, because I'd heard that the second night can sometimes be harder than the first, and also Will was going to be leaving right after bedtime to play in a hockey game. He'd be there for the initial put down (assuming it took <30 min like Night 1 had) and then gone for a few hours, and I was worried about being alone and her waking up crying. I wanted to take a shower, and I wanted to get some sleep, but mostly I wanted to not be alone to do the crying intervals. We'd tried this method for her evening nap and it failed miserably. We'd been told that if after 30 min it's not working, to end the nap and wait until the next time, so we stopped trying. She stopped crying and was her usual joyous self. But I was nervous about bedtime.
At about 8:15pm, after getting her all ready for bed, I nursed her - she fell asleep within 15 minutes like she usually does, but woke a bit when I stood up to put her in her crib (I was trying to wake her a little so I would put her down sleepy but not asleep). Good! This is what we want! She started crying as soon as I set her down, which was to be expected. I patted her, shushed her, kissed her goodnight and told her I loved her, and then I walked out to the sounds of her crying. I texted a friend that we were off to a loud start on night 2, and I whimpered to Will (who was in the bathroom getting ready to leave) that she was crying. I braced myself for a rough evening.
I went out into the living room to bury my head in my parent-friend chat groups...and, my friends, she cried for literally 2 minutes and fell asleep. I didn't believe it, and when Will left and was all "she's asleep! woo hoo! amazing baby!" I was skeptical. I believe I meekly shrugged and said, "maybe, we'll see." He left. And she stayed asleep. I had a glass of wine and some chocolate. I watched some Netflix. After over an hour, I was (mostly) convinced that she was out, and I took a shower (with the monitor in full view). I washed the pump parts. I was practically high off the 2+ hours of sleeping baby, and wasn't tired, so I watched some more Netflix. Around 11:30, Will was home and I finally got in bed.
At 11:40, I heard a little yelp from her room, and it made my heart stop for a second. Will was in the shower, and I just laid there, listening, not sure what to expect. She fussed quietly for 10 minutes but didn't cry, so I didn't go in her room (them's the rules). And then she was asleep again. At 4am, I heard some quiet fussing, but it lasted about 5 seconds - long enough for me to think, "Wow! It's 4am! She's probably hungry. Maybe I'll get up and feed her--oh wait she's asleep again." I thought about pumping, but decided to opt for more sleep. Same thing happened at 6am. And then she woke up for real at 7:30 (her normal wakeup time).
I did not enter her room between 8:30pm and 7:30am and she slept and slept and woke up happy and hungry (she ate for 10 min vs her usual 6). It's bittersweet. Last night was the first night of her entire life that I haven't fed her overnight. A part of me is sad about that, about her not needing me as much. I was just starting to like our little middle of the night nursing sessions (when they happened twice a night, anyway). I'm worried that my milk supply will drop if I'm not feeding her at night anymore. I missed her last night, and the 30 minutes we spent together nursing and playing while I got dressed before I left for work felt very short. But on the other hand, I didn't stumble out of bed and fall asleep in the glider while nursing at 2am. And tonight, maybe I'll even go to bed before midnight.
And of course, this could be a fluke. It's only been two days. By no means do I think we've wrapped this up. If this holds, it's been the luckiest, easiest sleep training ever. We may have a bad night tonight, or in a few nights. And surely we will in the future if she's sick or teething or going through some other development thing. She napped poorly (only two 30 min naps) the last two days, so maybe she was just extra tired. Maybe she'll nap well today and sleep less well (though I hear sleep begets sleep). But it's a good sign regardless, knowing she can do it. And knowing she can do it makes it easier to handle the crying. Not easy, of course, but easier.
This post was long, yes, I know. And maybe only interesting to me (and maybe not even to me). But I'm in "document it all" mode so that I don't forget. Here's a baby.
|happy and awake and playing on our bed while I get dressed