Thursday, February 15, 2007

Breath Expelled

Roanen's sleep habits have once again deteriorated to a point where I'm at the end of my rope. His naps, which were lasting between 1 1/2 and 2 hours twice a day (heaven!) have only been an hour long each for the past couple of days. Still not unbearable, but it was nice to have that time to myself and Josey. Nighttime is much worse, and his sleep stretches are back to less than 3 hours each. Three nights ago he slept a few hours, then when I went to nurse him he didn't unlatch himself and roll over like he usually does after a couple of minutes, so after about 15 minutes I tried to unlatch him because I am officially sick of nursing. He proceeded to go completely out of control, screaming and flinging himself around for 1 1/2 hours. I though he might sleep a long time after that, but he was up again 1 1/2 hours later so I just brought him into bed where he continued to whine about nursing. I've managed to wean him during the day, so the next step was getting him to fall asleep in his bed with me beside him. Two nights ago he had his bedtime routine with a story and a song, then I lay down with him. He cried and got off the bed a few times as usual, but fell asleep after about 30 minutes, which wasn't too bad in my opinion. I was congratulating myself on a job well done when he woke up 30 minutes later. Another 1/2 hour of crying, then he was back to sleep. This happened 4 more times BEFORE I went to bed, then he was up about another 3 times the rest of the night. I was determined to try putting him to bed like this for a week to see if there was any progress, so last night we did the routine, and it only took him 25 minutes to fall asleep. Actually, he settled down, stopped crying, and closed his eyes after only a couple of minutes, but he has now replaced nursing as a comfort with holding and squeezing my nose. Every time I tried to "unlatch" him from my nose he cried and fussed like I had unlatched him when I was nursing. I definitely don't want this to become a habit (although I think it already has) so I'll have to try to get him attached to a stuffed animal or something he can hold onto while falling asleep. So that sleep stretch only lasted 1 1/2 hours, then I gave up and just nursed him so he would go to sleep without screaming because I was sick of dealing with him. He still woke up a few more times and ended up in bed with us as usual.
After all of this, I just happened to remember that I have the Baby Whisperer for Toddlers book, and that she considers 1 year olds toddlers, so I checked it to see if there was any useful info in it. Coincidentally there's a case study in it with a 14 month old with all the sleep issues that Roanen has, so now I have a plan. It's going to involve much crying and probably a lot of sleepless nights for us, but hopefully it will work. I'll give it a good try anyway because I'm totally done with this.
On the plus side with Roanen, he has begun signing again. Most importantly he signs "hungry" which is great because now I know that when he gets really cranky he's usually hungry, and I also know that he's able to eat a lot more at a meal than I was giving him. He's also playing on his own and with Josey for really long periods of time, which gives me a nice break, although I can't get anything done because I'm afraid if he sees me or hears me doing something it's going to remind him that I'm around and he'll get clingy again.
Josey's behaviour has also been a lot better. He's listening a little more, and we had a huge breakthrough at Toybus yesterday when he wasn't running into anyone or running around like a maniac during song time. Even the organizer was really impressed and noticed that he was showing a ton of restraint when some of the other kids got hyper and he just watched them go crazy instead of joining in (or starting it for that matter which is what usually happens). He was very proud of himself, and is still talking about it a day later.
Finally, apparently Josey believes that he is solely responsible for Roanen, and has been apologizing for "not watching Roanen" when Roanen does things like fall down the stairs or break things. Pretty amusing stuff. Mostly. Unfortunately he just pooped his pants and apparently feels that he deserves chocolate for doing so. Give me strength...

1 comment:

Vicky said...

I think it's great that you have a plan and are sticking to it! Good for you!