I wasn’t the best at getting Harrison to sleep when I was a momma because, well…I was a first-time momma. I had no idea what to do with this creature that shot out of my lady-bits & into my life. I was nervous & jumpy & worried that if I let him sleep in his lamb swing, he’d try to take the thing to college. But I’m proud to say that now, I’m pretty good with fussy babies.
The first tip is to calm down. Seriously. I know it feels like the world will end if your baby doesn’t go to sleep right this instant, right now, are you listening to me kid?! But I promise you, Earth will keep spinning. The baby got to feed off you via umbilical cord for nine months, so don’t let him feed off your anxiety outside of the womb.
Get a routine. You need a “sleep cue,” like a bath or a bottle or a lullaby. Something that tells your baby (who can’t read a clock) that it’s almost sleepy-time-o-clock.
Then get the kid warm & cozy. I found that if I left my kid in pajamas all day rather than fussy baby jeans & polos, he slept better. Which makes sense because I sleep better in fleece foot jammies than a cocktail dress. If he’s a swaddle kid, swaddle him.
Let him sleep where he wants. This was my philosophy with naps. If he wanted to nap in his swing, cool. On his belly? Sure, I just sat beside him with a book. Bedtime, on the other hand, was crib only.
Preheat. Read more about that here.
Pat the crap out of him. When I was a new momma, I would gingerly tap my baby on the back to soothe him. LAME. That would irritate the fire out of me if I was a baby. Instead, my kid wanted to be jostled & probably because that’s what it felt like in the womb. So I like to hold babies firmly against me, then pat their diapered rumbs firmly. You’re not spanking the kid, but you are giving a solid “Hey kid, I’m here” rhythm for them to go brain-numb on.
Do the mommy sway. You know the drill. Stand up & plant your feet shoulder-width apart. Sway back & forth, using your hips. You can even get in a little torso rotation for the super-fussy baby & bonus! Your abs! p.s. keep the firm pat going with the mommy sway. When he’s good & zonked, place him in the preheated bed & tiptoe out. Don’t do anything weird like try to sniff the top of his head or bottom of his feet because you’ll probably wake him. Also, your kid may be totally different & you may be laughing at this list. The beauty of kids is that they like to pull fast ones.
How did you get your tot to sleep? Was there anything he or she really liked?