One of my very first blog posts, as a parent, was about my "Newborn Vampire" and how he had his days and nights mixed up. That was on my old blog and I've never figured out how to move the posts here. This one started a few months later, and focused a lot on Little Man's helmet journey and my mixed up emotions. Heck, it still focuses on my mixed up emotions!
Anyway, I'm talking about sleep because it's a precious thing. I've driven around for an hour to keep Little Man napping--if he fell asleep in the car. Though I never drove anywhere to get him to fall asleep like some of my mom friends have. Thankfully I never felt that desperate. At the beginning, Little Man was a terrible sleeper--particularly during the day. The only place he'd sleep was ON ME or in his infant carrier. The latter contributed to his brachycephaly.
Somewhere around 3 months of age, he slept through the night (STTN). It was short-lived. And from 3-6 months, his sleep was erratic. Some nights he'd sleep from 10 pm (his initial bedtime) to around 5 am, then take a bottle and go back to sleep for 2 hours. Other nights he'd sleep from 10-2 and then from 3-6 and nap several times during the day. There was a dark period--from 6 to 9 months, where he was just a rotten sleeper. I blame that on teeth (got the first 2 just before/at 6 months and the second 2 around 9 months). Thankfully, at 9 months, he began sleeping on his tummy. Once he did that, STTN was common and no longer infrequent. His bedtime was (and still is) at 8-8:30 and he usually sleeps until 6:30 am. So his average is 10 hours of sleep per night--I wish I could have 8!
Naps, however, took longer to get on track. As I said, initially he'd only sleep in his infant carrier or ON me--until about 5/6 months when he got too heavy, I was fine with him sleeping in my Baby K'tan Carrier. He'd also sleep pretty well in his travel swing (once he had the DOC Band, I didn't worry about that). But he never slept in a Pack-n-Play and that caused some issues, as it was his "nap place" at my office until he was 9 months old.
At that time, my in-laws moved and I got the crib they had for the grandkids. Little Man would sleep there--but only after I had rocked him to sleep and transferred him to the crib. And the naps were short. Both weren't more than 45 minutes most days. And he'd almost always fall asleep in the car, on the way home, for about 20 minutes.
Finally at 11 months of age, I decided that enough was enough! I needed him to nap! So I let him cry it out (CIO) for naps. No Ferber checks. Just crying. The first day he wailed for about 30 minutes but eventually slept (sniffling in his sleep) for close to 2 hours). The second day was worse. But by day 3, he was napping within 10 minutes of being put in his crib. And until last February, when he turned 18 months, he took his first nap at home (at around 9 am, and I'd be at work by 11) and his second nap at the office, at around 1:30 pm. Both naps were about 1-1.5 hours long.
Since he was 18 months old, he's been on a "schedule" of sorts. One nap per day. The nap usually begins at 12:30 after his lunch. He'll sleep anywhere from 1.5 to 3 hours, with 2 being the average until recently. Lately it's been 2.5 to 3 hours. But if he sleeps too long he's crabby. But I think he is happier at night after his 3 hour nap. I know I can get much more done while he's sleeping. And, when I'm home, I'll nap too. My husband doesn't understand--he's not a good napper. But I love naps and will nap whenever I can, especially while Little Man still does.
I'll miss the days of napping when he eventually drops them. I hope it's not for a while. While it does limit my afternoon activities, I like naps.