Friday, February 22, 2008

live blogging: sleep school day 2 / the wakeup call

Charlie's on a business trip.

Henry woke up crying at 5:01 AM. I was so tired because Charlie is on a business trip and I was up very late last night doing all the things that he would normally help me with at the end of the day, but didn't help me with because he is away on a business trip.

I have been preparing myself for him going on a business trip since I first heard about it two weeks ago, but nothing quite prepares you for being alone like hearing a baby crying and knowing that you've got to get them.

When Henry woke up crying this morning at 5:01, it felt like I had

Perhaps it was because I was up too late and my brain wasn't functioning properly, or perhaps it was because Henry did so well yesterday with naps that I had these delusions of grandeur that he would sleep in until 8:00, today. Whatever the case, I didn't move William in to our room which I really should have because Charlie is on a business trip and there is plenty of space in our bed. An air mattress wouldn't have even been necessary.

I listened to him not really cry - but holler - babble - shriek and do the squeaky door (eeee, ooooo, aaaaa, eeeeee, aaaaahhhhh), for exactly 24 minutes before I ran to get him. He was sitting up on his knees in his crib, chewing on a stuffed animal and didn't look like he had any intention of going back to sleep. He was in my bed, nursing and pulling my hair by 5:26.

By 6:10, he was joyfully awake and crawling all over me. If Charlie wasn't on a business trip, which he is, I would have encouraged my husband to take Henry and the dog for a walk at around this time so that I could go back to sleep for another 30 minutes or so. But since that wasn't an option, I got up and tried to put Henry back in his crib - because when you're exhausted you do stupid things.

He didn't even touch the mattress before I realized this was a dumb idea and his crying would quickly wake up William. I took him back out of the crib, grabbed a clean diaper, grabbed a pacifier and came out to check my e-mail at 6:15. By the time I wrote the very first sentence of this blog, I heard not one ... not two ... but three shrill little voices yell out, "MOMMY. I COME WITH YOU!" and all three of the kids came running out in to the nearly pitch black house to see what I was doing.

I sent them all back to bed and said they had to stay there until the sun came up.

Meanwhile, Henry is playing with a toy guitar.

I'm off to unload the dishwasher and get dressed.

But only AFTER I write a note to myself in big bold letters that reads "PUT WILLIAM IN YOUR BED TONIGHT."

Although 5:00 may not seem early, it really is. Particularly for someone like me who would like to be a morning person, but to do so effectively, needs more than four hours of sleep.


  1. Oh, careful with the hair-pulling!
    I had to sleep with a t-shirt over my head (shirt neck pulled up to my hairline and the shirt draped down my back - very sexy...) with my firstborn because I let him get used to soothing himself to sleep stroking and pulling on my hair while being breastfed. The hair-pulling did not stop when b-feeding stopped, but kept on going until his own hair was long enough to grab. This need for my hair would wake him up several times a night, so neither one of us got enough sleep. Hence the t-shirt...
    Once he started pulling his own hair his fingers would get stuck and he'd just pull the hair out, creating bald patches. Lots of fun.
    My 2 younger ones never got close to my hair, although it can be so nice while their hands are small...
    GK in Iceland

  2. Yikes! Okay, this is one small glitch. He got wide awake in those 24 minutes. Not a big deal. You will fix this tomorrow! Hang in there!

  3. Ugh, Jen. Hubby is out of town here too but I only have the two. Sounds like yesterday worked beautifully. I hope today is more of the same for you.

  4. I really admire how on the ball you are! Wow.
    The determination and follow through no doubt will pay off.
    Keep up the good work.

  5. In response to Susan with the sleep question: I don't know much, but I did hear SOMETHING... my sister researched it and passed it on. Her kids were well past the age of having sleep difficulties when one night her youngest son (8 or 9 years old) woke up in the middle of the night stating that he was STARVING! So so hungry that he couldn't sleep! Please please please make him some pancakes!? Of course, since he never did anything like that before she took him downstairs and cooked him pancakes.
    Well ... every night after that at the SAME TIME of night he did the SAME THING ... what she learned is that the brain does some fancy something or other when you attach food to a behavior making it more difficult to get rid of the behavior. I can't quite explain it correctly, but if you just comfort your son when he wakes instead of nursing him when he wakes, after two weeks of denying him food at night the behavior will disappear. It takes longer to extinguish behaviors that are connected to food.
    Hope that helps!

  6. Wow, that pancakes comment was really interesting. I will have to remember that one. I love reading this sleep school because I am a HUGE Weissbluth fan. My 3 yr old was "sleep schooled" at 6 months and my current 6 month old is in process.