Today is Friday. Last Sunday was the start of a wonderful week of sleep for Arianna (and me)! Sunday night around 9pm, Arianna had been nursing and sleepy for a little while, and I just randomly decided to try to put her in her crib for bed. The only times I'd ever done it before, she's screamed her guts out immediately and never calmed down (in the few minutes I waited impatiently). And even the times she's fallen asleep nursing at that time, she's always woken up an hour later ready to play again! But Sunday night, she cried for maybe 2 seconds til I closed her door, and then she was quiet and fell asleep all on her own, and stayed asleep! Up until that night, I'd been nursing her to sleep for every nap and bedtime! She only woke up a few short times that night, and went right back to sleep! Since then, she has been doing the same thing for naps and bedtime! Sometimes she cries for a couple minutes, but if I go back in there, she lays right back down. If she's having trouble falling asleep, all it takes is a couple minutes of resting my hand on her back, and she's OUT! She already knows, as soon as we walk into her dimly lit room, that it's time to sleep. Her grip around my neck gets tighter, and we cuddle and hug and kiss for a few minutes. Then she lays right down! It's almost as if she flipped a switch somewhere and now she's a little miracle sleeper! The first time it happened, I didn't really believe it. But after a whole week, I think it's safe to be excited!
Here's how I fixed her. Lol. First, the only thing I did was start waking her up at 8 or 8:30 every morning. I didn't do anything else different - she still nursed to sleep for nap and bedtime, she was still taking naps randomly throughout the day, and she was still up til 11 or midnight. Then, everyday I started purposefully nursing her so she'd take a nap around 11 and then again 3 hours after she woke up from that nap. She was still staying up til 11 or midnight. Then Sunday night I just got the idea to try to put her down awake, and that was it! Now, whenever she seems tired (around 11 and around 4) I put her down for a nap. And she's been ready for bed earlier and earlier every night. The first few times she started seeming sleepy around 9, then 8:45 - last night I was out, and Dan put her down just before 8 and she fell right asleep! She's never cried herself to sleep! She is still nursing a lot, and she still wakes up a little in the middle of the night. But we're all much happier now! Just in time for her 1st birthday on Wednesday! 1 year ago I was sitting around like an enormous blob, 2 days past my due date, with 5 days left!