Sunday, July 14, 2013

I'm a little sad...

Those who know me know that I was emphatic about not letting Nicolette CIO (Cry it Out) to fall asleep. For the first 6 months of her life we enjoyed a beautiful co-sleeping relationship and she never once cried as she fell asleep in my arms. I will never regret that time and am convinced that it helped to maintain our breastfeeding relationship.

When Nicolette was around 6 1/2 to 7 months old it became obvious that it was time to move to the crib. She was starting to wiggle and toss and turn more and more during the night and was waking up (I think) because she was uncomfortable and unable to move freely while snuggled in my arms. For 2 1/2 months we STRUGGLED to transition to the crib through chronic and incessant night wakings. Finally at around 9 months old, Nicolette seemed to have gotten the hang of sleeping in her crib. I was able to rock her until drowsy and put her in the crib. She'd fuss a little but I could rub her back or even lay down on the floor next to her and hold her hand and she'd settle down and fall asleep with little drama.

Around 11 months old she suddenly stopped letting me put her down. We'd nurse and rock and she'd get drowsy but start squirming, fussing and eventually crying. If I continued to hold her and rock her she'd work up into a full blown cry. I' put her in the crib and immediate crying, popping up to all fours or standing. I try patting her back, rubbing her, laying her back down, laying down on the floor next to the matter what I do, the crying just escalates and escalates. Pick her back up and rock her, more wiggling, squirming and crying.

Against everything that my gut tells me, I lay her in her crib, kiss her and tell her that I love her and that it's time to go night-night and I walk out of the room. She stands up, reaches for me out of the crib and cries. She usually continues to cry from anywhere to 1-10 minutes while she crawls around and changes positions a few times and is then fast asleep. I HATE IT!!!! I hate thinking that she is sad when she goes to sleep.

Those who know Nicolette know that she almost NEVER cries. Honestly, I'm not exaggerating. She's just a very easygoing, good natured baby. She doesn't fuss or whine when she's hungry, hardly ever cries when she bumps or bangs herself...nothing. And we don't have this same issue with naps. She'll even play in her crib before or after naps most of the time. So to have to hear her cry at bedtime EVERY night is pure torture for me. I'm out of ideas and don't know what else to do but let her cry. If I stay in the room she continues to stand up and reach for me and gets more and more worked up until she can't fall asleep. If I hold her she wiggles and squirms and cries and continues to get worked up. I honestly don't know what is "the right thing" to do.

So point being...never say never.  I'm now a CIO mom and I hate it.

If you have any other tips to share please let me know. I'm out of ideas and am sad about this every night.


For an update see my subsequent blog post here. Nicolette started sleeping well and going to sleep on her own with NO problem as soon as she mastered the art of walking. I honestly believe that she suffered from Developmental Milestone Night Waking. Her poor little brain and body were just consumed with the thought of becoming fully mobile to sleep.  Once she mastered that, she was able to sleep peacefully! 


  1. Kelly we're struggling with this right now, too. Callie is 8.5 months and for the last 1.5 months she's had major issues with constipation and teething. So much so it has disrupted her entire schedule - and now every day is different. Gone are the days where - at the stroke of 8pm - she was ready for bed, fell asleep gently in my arms then drifted off completely in her crib. She now goes to bed anywhere from 8:30 - 10:00 depending on when she had a nap during the afternoon. Most of the time she falls asleep in my arms after her last bottle, but wakes up the INSTANT her head hits the crib mattress and needs to be picked up and rocked again for up to 30 MORE minutes. THEN it's still not a given she'll stay asleep going down for the 2nd time in the crib. A lot of times I end up cradling her in my arms until 10:30 until she's in such a deep sleep nothing would wake her. BUT THEN she's been waking up anywhere from 2:30 - 4AM and needs to eat. She'll fall asleep again in my arms, but AGAIN the minute she's back in the crib wakes up SCREAMING to get out. It's PITIFUL. So I pick her up and bring her in bed with us until we get up around 6/7am. I have flirted with the idea of CIO, but it KILLS ME to hear her cry b/c I attribute it to her being in pain from the constipation / teething and since I can't seem to fix THAT, the LEAST I can do is comfort her in our bed. It's a vicious cycle we're in, and my pediatrician's office is USELESS with these issues we're having (so much so we're about to change docs). But I KNOW there is some value in "sleep training" and eventually, just like everything else in their little development repertoire, it will happen. Good luck to us all - we're doing the best we can! Abby

    1. I feel your pain Abby. It's pure misery. I've tried bringing Nicolette back into bed with us several times and she just won't sleep anymore. She'll drift off for 5-10 minutes and then she's awake, babbling, playing with my face, crawling around the bed. She just can't or won't relax in our bed anymore. Same with in my arms...she rarely lets me rock her to sleep anymore. It's almost like she's stimulated by being around us and it wakes her up more. I also am always afraid that any time she cries she's in pain of some sort but even worse than that it makes me sad to think that maybe she's just crying because she needs/wants physical touch from mommy or daddy. I wish these babies came with instruction manuals!