Today, Christian is eleven weeks old and he has been sleeping in his own cradle, still in our room, but in his own cradle for three nights. He has slept the whole night in the cradle before but that was at the expense of my whole night of sleep. That was me camping right beside the cradle and rocking it all night. I would feed him, change him, and put him back in and then lay there beside him holding his little hand through the bars.
At the very beginning we tried swaddling him and putting him in his bassinet and jiggly chair. But soon our own sleep took need and he was in the bed with us. Don't get me wrong, I love cuddling with him and we got good at it - both Jonny and I taking turns cuddling the baby at night. We were lucky if he would sleep in the middle without cuddles. The boy was getting spoiled and Jonny was waking up with a sore back and I was getting sore sleeping in the same position trying not to move. That isn't a very restful sleep - albeit - it was some sleep.
One day last week Christian had an eight hour sleep. I rolled him out of my pit spot, pumped, came back and rolled him back in, and again once more I rolled him out and when I went to pump he did wake up with Jonny then. But, I was pumping every four hours. When I went back into the bedroom, I looked at Jonny and said, "Do you realize what just happened? Our boy slept eight hours!" We were pretty excited. I went for a run that morning and smiled the whole way. Even though that length of sleep has not repeated itself, it gave me the idea that the boy just could be ready to try sleeping on his own again and mommy and daddy could have their own bed back and their original cuddle partners.
So, Monday night project, Sleep in your own Cradle, began. The first night it took me two hours to get him to sleep in the cradle. I fed him till he was sleepy, laid him down, he would sleep a little bit and then wake up crying and I would repeat the process. We also used a bottle of formula because that keeps them full so they can sleep longer. Each night it got easier to get him to sleep in the cradle. But, tonight, I was sleepy and at 4am after being up with him at 12, pumping at 1, feeding again at 2:30, then him waking up again at 4 - I just brought him into bed with me and cuddled him. I was tired. Last night Jonny brought him into bed with us when he fed him once in the night because he didn't like the noise of him fussing in the cradle. So, we are not there completely - but the effort is being put in and in time the boy will be more comfortable sleeping in his own bed - and that will make us all more comfortable.