Sunday, March 14, 2010

Ferber sleep update #1

Well, things went less horrible than I'd expected last night. In fact I'd say they went pretty well.

For the last week or so we've been using Ferber's chart to gradually eliminate all midnight feedings from Edie's schedule. It worked well. We went from 2 midnight feedings of about 3 ounces or so each to Friday night only feeding her one, one ounce serving. So last night we felt comfortable letting her go all night without food. Since we've also gone to almost exclusive bottle feeding lately, we can rest easy knowing she's consumed enough food during the day to sleep all night without eating. Yesterday she drank 30 ounces of formula/breastmilk (plus some mashed bananas!) so we knew she was set for the night. This eased my mind and meant I wouldn't worry that she was crying for food.

We put her down last night at 8:30pm (about 30 minutes later than normal). I kissed her goodnight, turned out the light and left the room. We followed the 3-5-10 minute schedule that Ferber recommends for the first night. Jeff checked on her after 3 minutes of crying, then she cried for 5 more minutes - so Jeff checked again. After that second check, she fell asleep after about 5 more minutes of crying. This meant we didn't have to do the 10 minute check. Success! We were expecting so much more crying that it felt like a huge relief. She woke up a few times during the early portion of the night but only cried for a minute or two each time before falling back asleep on her own. At 1:30am or so, she cried for 3 minutes, so Jeff went in to check on her. She fell back asleep after that on her own less than 5 minutes later so no second check was required. The 4:30am check was a little less easy, but I did the 3-5-10 checks and then she fell asleep shortly before I was going to have to do my second 10-minute check. We had to wake her up at 8am (actually 7am pre-daylight savings time) so that we could set her sleep clock properly for tonight.

Tonight we'll do it again with longer breaks between checking. Ferber recommends 5-7-12 for night two, so this is what we'll stick to. I have to say that the relief was not really in the amount of sleep we all got, but rather that we didn't have to go in every single time she cried the second it started. There was no worrying about getting her back to sleep on the yoga ball, making bottles in the dark, or putting her back down in the crib like 5 bajillion times before it stuck. We never once had to pick her up, but we were able to go in enough to make sure she was fine. It was a vast improvement from Friday night, which found us awake and physically putting her back to sleep on the yoga ball 6 different times. Wish us luck that things go as well tonight.


Tib said...

hang in there... remember to breathe... she'll catch on~

Lindsey said...

That is so great! I am so happy to hear that Edie is catching on - and catching on pretty well, it seems! I know how you feel - it is a relief to know what I need to do each night and to know I don't have to spend hours upon hours rocking and nursing her to sleep. Here's to this all being a thing of the past for both of us in a week!

Kathleen said...

Sounds like major improvement! You'll have to bronze that book!

Katie Ann Brooks said...

I repeat- 2.5 hours Sophie cried that first time....2.5 hours. 16 minutes looks like frigin' heaven! :)