This is an update to the sleeping issue. Jack has made so much progress, that even when he has a setback I still feel accomplished!
I read a lot about sleep training. I started with No Cry Sleep Solution, but I didn't understand what I was supposed to do! I read Sleeping Through the Night when the babies were just born, so I really have no idea what it said! I followed a website on BabyCenter called Teaching Your Baby & Toddler How to Sleep and actually followed that advice and got Isabel to sleep!
But none of those felt right for Jack. He would scream and cry and it just didn't feel right. If we let Izzy cry, it was like for 2 minutes of mostly fussing. I think she cried that first night for less than 5 minutes. It was so easy.
I read this Changing the Sleep Pattern of the Family Bed and felt that it fit very nicely. From 4 months on, we were pretty much co-sleeping with Jack full time. Naps happened in the car or in the swing. I like the analogies he used and the gentle progression to night weaning.
Once our crazy vacationing was over, I decided to begin sleep training. So on the night of Jack's 1st year birthday party, we began!
We moved him into a pack n play in the guest room. We didn't want to ruin Isabel's sleep habits. I didn't swaddle him, I didn't nurse him, I just rocked him. When he was drowsy, I put him down and walked out. He screamed. So I rocked him again until drowsy and put him down, and sat next to him and rubbed his tummy. He cried, but didn't get hysterical. It took about an hour, but he was asleep! For 30 minutes! I repeated it again and he slept for 4 hours!
I did that for a couple of days, and then I stopped rubbing his tummy. I sat next to him and he fussed and cried, but quickly fell asleep. After a few successful days, I moved him to his crib and Isabel to the PNP and continued sitting by him.
Once that was going well, I brought Izzy back in and I just went with it. We read stories, did hugs and kisses, music on and I put him in his bed. We walked out. No crying. No fussing. Sleeping!
Naps are a little more challenging because the babies like to play and laugh. But no crying (usually) and they both sleep for at least an hour (usually).
I am very happy now! Now we are working on a more reliable schedule and night weaning. I will say I am not too anxious to end night weaning. I usually enjoy the snuggles with a baby that is growing up too fast. But when one of them wakes up twice, I do wish the night weaning was going a little faster!
I used lots of !!! in this post, but I really feel so proud of Jack and myself. I thought it was going to involve lots of crying and time and sleepless nights. But he showed me that he was ready to sleep on his own and I showed him I was ready to let him!
I guess the next big thing is potty training!