Survival


Those of you who are new moms may understand entirely where I am coming from here, or maybe not!

When Roo came home from the hospital, I suffered from major anxiety. I even went to a therapist a couple of times to help deal with it. I was terrified something would happen to her. Like every new mom, I was concerned about whether or not she was breathing. But to the extreme. When she was in the NICU, she was monitored 24/7 and then they suddenly sent us home. And, I was frightened that she would stop breathing and not know it.

In order to survive, I held her or asked someone else to hold her all the time. She was held all day and all night. We hired a night nurse a few times but that was expensive.

My parents took over so that I could get sleep and woke me for her every three hour feedings. Eventually my dad took over entirely and for the first two months of her life, it was routine for her to sleep in my dad’s arms. It was nice bonding time for the two of them and good for my dad and I too to spend time together in the middle of the night.

Eventually, I knew the craziness had to stop. It wasn’t a way of life for anyone. So, I started bringing her to bed with me. She slept in the crook of my arm and I pushed the blankets and pillows away from us. And, we slept.

I have to add also that I was concerned because Roo was spitting up through her nose and suffering from colic. The only way to help her was to hold her upright all the time and to nurse her in order for her not to cry constantly. It was tough and a lot of tears were shed – and not just by her.

We co-slept successfully that way for the past month or so. I come from a family full of doctors. I recognize the dangers if co-sleeping even when done “safely” but I needed to survive and this was my only solution at the time.

I tried several times to get her to sleep in her bassinet in the pack-n-play and a woman in my mom’s group lent me her at arms reac.h co-sleeper. It always failed. Roo would spit up through her nose and become hysterical and panicked. So, we co-slept more.

I finally purchased the nap na.nny a few weeks ago. I tried it and she loved it. But, she was still spitting up through her nose 😦

So we continued to co-sleep.

I knew it couldn’t be the solution and I wasn’t sleeping well because I was terrified that something would happen but I needed to survive and get at least not a good nights sleep but at least some sleep.

With my parents leaving to go back to their lives, I hired a mother’s helper/babysitter, D, to support me a couple of times a week. Roo is such a cuddly and needy girl that she wants to be held ALL the time making it impossible to get anything done.

On Monday, D got Roo to sleep in her nap na.nny without spitting up! She also strongly encouraged me to put her in it at night. D is a former oncology nurse and mom of four.

So, on Monday night, I put Roo in the nap na.nny in the middle of our bed. And, she slept. And, she slept well. Better and longer than in my arms! She’s slept there for the past three nights!

My new mom survival mode is slowly coming to a close as Roo matures. Her colicky nights are farther apart and fewer. She spits up less and less. She can bear to be out down for longer and longer and is able to entertain herself for short periods of time. Its wonderful! My newborn is now an infant.

So, I did another thing I never thought I would do. I let our baby sleep in our bed. But, I’m taking the steps to slowly get her out of this habit. She’s growing up and thriving and I know soon I can move her into her own crib in her own room!! I can move from survival to living and enjoying!

How did you transition from co-sleeping to crib?

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6 thoughts on “Survival

  1. Glad you shared because I feel like I’m in the same boat! We’re co-sleeping by choice but he’s an AWFUL sleeper for the second half of the night and I would love to transition him out of our bed at 4am when he starts grunting. I haven’t been successful yet but now that you shared I’m going to give the Nap Nanny a try!!!

  2. I really love the idea of the nap nanny in our bed. Seems like such a great solution for still sort of co-sleeping but also keeping them safe. I’m resisting buying one because I’ve spent SO much money on baby stuff in the past week so I’m on the hunt for one on consignment. I can’t even imagine him in his own room in his crib at this point. How many hour stretches of sleep are you getting now?

  3. So glad to hear you’ve gotten some sleep recently. We’re still co-sleeping, but it would be nice to have our guy in his own bed (next to our bed) so that hubby can sleep with us all night again. 🙂
    How much does a Nap Nappy cost? I wonder if I could find one here in Finland…

  4. Good for you, girl! I know it can’t be easy for you, after all you’ve been through. You’re making great strides though. Proud of you! Keep hanging in there. *hugs* ❤ And thanks for sharing so much. I feel like most people hold back, and I don't really get the true picture of what I might expect as a parent one day.
    Oh, and I've shared a couple of your posts as well as that article you had. People re-shared and re-pinned it! 🙂 They think you are a great blog for mommies!

  5. Glad things are starting to get a little easier! Not sure I have anything helpful to say about the transition…I’ve always slept way better with the kids in the crib and feel they are safer (I always worry about them getting tangled in blankets/pillows, me rolling over on them, them falling off the bed when co-sleeping), so although we co-sleep a little it’s been pretty easy for me to put them in the crib. I can SO relate to the anxiety, though, that’s been my biggest challenge. Sorry you are feeling it…it sucks. In general I’ve found the more time that goes by and the more nights my kids actually survive the night, the less I worry. Although the anxiety definitely ebbs and flows for me (and it’s kind of bad right now for some reason). And I still check on them over and over and over when they’re asleep to make sure they are OK.

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