There is a truth universally acknowledged that babies love to sleep.
Preciously plump new-born’s are plucked (that’s almost the same word I was thinking for my pelvic floor these days!) from their cosy, Casa de Mum, where they have snuggled up for 9-ish months, sans sleep issues.
Once on the outside and identifying as their own person, a few issues can kick in regarding the much-trophied sleep.
8 truths about baby sleep:
1. “He’ll only be rocked to sleep and then wakes up immediately when I put him down.”
Haven’t we all been there? I know I have, and you start to think that using your arms for anything other than rocking is light years away. (It DOES get better! And surprisingly quickly)
2. “She dozes off on the breast and then I’m stuck, on the sofa, daring not to move and wake her.”
Frankly, this is a great excuse to binge-watch everything on Netflix. Also, take lots of photos, even if you feel trapped at the time, this too shall pass (and you’ll want to remember these formative cuddles)
3. “He’s always falling asleep in the buggy when we’re trying to get somewhere.”
Ah ha ha, trying to get somewhere? That’s a new experience all together once you’ve got an extra human being in tow isn’t it? How many hours have we all spent, on foot, discovering our home towns with new, saggy, mum-eyes just in desperation to get them to sleep? *raises both hands in the air*
4. “She seems to sleep for longer if I give a bottle of formula”
Purely based on my own experience of combi-feeding early on in our “feeding journey”, this rang true for all of 5 minutes, right before the latest wonder week kicked in. Then boobs became my best friend (my own, nothing weird!)
5. “He seems to sleep more contentedly when I breastfeed.”
Nothing like a booby snuggle but cuddles are just as good and sleep is sleep, capiche?
6. “I’ve set up a nursery and have a dedicated zone for baby to sleep and slot into our lives. It’s duck-egg blue and on point.”
Be prepared that this zone may well turn out to be a “No fly/ No play/ No feeding/ No sleep,” area. It’s too bad baby doesn’t read up on the latest interior trends prior to arrival though hey?
7. “She only ever sleeps for 45 minutes maximum, I can’t get her to go any longer.”
If only these babies would nap for the amount of time all the books (and none of the human anecdotes) say.
8. “He will only sleep for any length of time if he’s attached to me, like a kangaroo.”
This one may be logical, I mean, he has been happily attached to you for his whole life so far so it’s only natural that he’d feel safe and sleepy when connected to you, in a sling for example. But, it’s a back breaker with a massive baby on your hands, post-c-section or with vaginal stitches.
Me? I’ve been blessed with a child who only naps in his buggy, during a walk. If I stop and chat on the phone or speak to a fellow human or step inside a coffee shop, 9.9 times out of 10, he wakes up and won’t go back to sleep.
What the actual fuck?
I’m here to tell you there’s no rhyme or reason to this baby sleep lark (IMO) and we’re all just muddling through, doing our best and that’s all we can ask of ourselves. So congratulate yourself and get back to those box sets, stat!
Daytime naps (wherever they occur) provide a desert island in an ocean of parenting, on which we can grab a glass of ‘Screaming orgasm’, pull up a beach towel and mindlessly scroll the socials and WhatsApp a friend.
All hail day-time naps!