New baby got you wondering if you’ll ever sleep again? The answer is YES. Rafe slept through the night for the FIRST time last night. He’s been up 2-4 times a night since he was born. I start him out in his crib around 7 pm and sometime between 11-2 he wakes. I bring him in with me + nurse him to sleep. Then again around 3 or 4 am, then 6 (times vary but you get the picture). That’s been a typical night for the last 13 months. Am I exhausted? 100%. Do I know this won’t last forever? I do now, but I didn’t always.
When I had my first child I wondered, seriously wondered if she’d ever sleep through the night. You see, I refused to sleep train. At least the way you hear about. Leaving my child to cry alone just wasn’t for me (no judgment if this is what works for you). So I resigned myself to the fact that I’d be up with my children at night for the rest of my life 😂 I responded to her needs. I nursed her in the night. I slept with her. I was tired, but I loved it. Then something equally magical and heartbreaking happened around 13 months + she stopped waking. She stopped needing me. I was finally able to sleep. But I also missed her + that special time we had. Repeat this same scenario for each of my babies + that has been our story. They’ve all stopped waking at different ages (between 10-13 months). All without “sleep training.”
Your baby isn’t broken if they aren’t sleeping through the night. It isn’t a competition between friends to see who’s baby can sleep through at the youngest age. Don’t compare yourself or your children to anyone else’s. Mothers are wired to respond to their infants. It’s intrinsic. It’s for a purpose. Our intuition combined with good old fashioned trial + error let’s us know what our babies need. When we respond that builds a solid foundation of trust until they are confident enough to take that proverbial first step without you, knowing you will catch them.
All this to say, you are their mother + you do what works best for you, of course. But don’t buy into the notion that if you don’t sleep train your baby they won’t learn to sleep without you. We can’t place our adult expectations on our young children and the truth is it isn’t normal for babies to sleep 12 hours uninterrupted or without nourishment or comfort. Take pride in the fact that they need you; want you; because you can give them what no one else can. You are their safe place + that is something so special. So yes, you will sleep eventually, and a part of you will miss the sleepless nights so don’t be in such a rush. Try to savor those 3 am feeds in the night because they won’t last forever.