Ok so (not so) secretly, I’ve always wished I could (a.) flash back to the 60’s and (b.) be one of Tina’s back up dancers (see 3:05 mark and onward to see why). Those girls can move. Turns out, so can my wee daughter! Turns out Miss Nadi was just waiting until she could roll over perfectly before attempting it. And she made it happen the night before last and has been rollin’ ever since! Here’s how the story goes.
We’ve swaddled Nadi every time she went to sleep since birth b/c she wouldn’t sleep more than 3-4 hours without being wrapped up (I know some would consider 3-4 hours of sleep very lucky and to you, I’m very sorry and wish you much more sleep very soon). I’ve been dreading the day we’d have to forgo the swaddle and read everything there was to know about when that should be and why et cetera. Basically, babies can be swaddled for as long as they enjoy it UNTIL they can roll over (for obvious reasons). Either way, Nadi had not been showing any interest at all in rolling over so I figured we had at least a few weeks.
Well the night before last, I swaddled her, fed her and put her to bed as per usual. Not as per usual, she woke at 10:30PM just as we were heading to bed. She was quite upset so the Hus unswaddled her to see if something was bunched, poking, rubbing or just otherwise bugging her. Nothing. So I nursed her and then we thought we’d re-swaddle her and put her to bed. Well, didn’t that little bum roll over right on her mat in front of us! “That’s it,” I exclaimed “No more swaddle.” Then it hit me what that actually meant: I was going to have to get her to sleep (not so hard) and stay asleep (harder) w/o our trusty bamboo/muslin fabric friend.
I changed her wee bum and then put her in her thusfar unused sleep sack. I rocked her until she was asleep. When it was time to put her in her crib, I felt my body tense up in fear that I’d wake her (it’s now 1:30AM and I’d been up since 5:30AM the previous day) but then I took a moment, rearranged my thoughts positively and repeated in my head “It’s time for bed my sweetheart. Mummy will just be in the next room. Mummy loves you.” Cheesy I know. I put her down. She adjusted herself for a moment and then… slept. Until 7AM the next morning. Amazing for her first night sans swaddle, no?!!
Since then, every night I’ve had to do less and less rocking to get her to sleep and she seems to be getting used to being put down without her swaddle to restrain all of her limbs. Yay!
So the evening when I first had to put Nadi down in her crib w/o her swaddle, I was madly googling (on my Motorola smart phone for which I am soooo grateful at times like those) how to put a baby down in his/her crib w/o waking them. I found nothing that helped so I devised my own strategy. Here it is. You’re rocking bub away right? Probably side to side with maybe a little forward/backward dance step now and again just to mix it up? Ok now add a little forward circle to your mix, in other words, supporting bub’s head with one hand and his/her bum with your other, lean forward slightly in a circular motion. Gradually make the circle deeper until you’re basically at crib level. Bub’s arms and legs will be dangling away and they’ll be none the wiser. Put bub down and shimmey your hands from beneath head and bum. Then to finish it off, place hand gently on bub’s chest until they settle (they’ll probably wriggle a bit when you first put them down). Walk away. Taaaadaaaaa!
I’m telling you it works. I’ve tried everything and this worked for our girl. I hope it works for you too. Oh and for you ladies who have yet to have your wee bubs, if you never listen to anything I have ever written, listen to this: PUT YOUR BUB IN THEIR LOCATION OF SLEEP DROWSY BUT AWAKE FROM THE VERY BEGINNING. This will help them to learn to put themselves to sleep and you will not be 5 months along and nursing and rocking your baby for hours on end at bedtime like some sore backed, chapped nippled people out there. Drowsy. But awake. I’m just saying. (Results not guaranteed but are much more likely than if you coddle your peanut to sleep every night for 5 months and then expect them to magically know how to soothe themselves and let you go and watch Millionaire Matchmaker. Heh.)
That’s all I got tonight folks. Peace out.