Yes! The little man got some sleep. He woke up at 4:45 AM last night, without having woken up since 11:15 PM. Co-sleeping is working very well. Now, we just have to get him to sleep until 7:15 AM.
At 4:45 AM, Angelica put his pacifier back in his mouth, and he fell asleep until after she got out of the shower this morning at around 6:15 AM. This led to a discussion about whether Alex was getting confused that Daddy was still in bed but Mommy was up and at’em. Technically, since there was bright light around, it was time for Alex to get up. We both think that we can put him back in his crib after his diaper change in the morning — which we may be able to eliminate with the two-diaper method — so that when Mommy gets up, there’s no confusion with the increase in light and activity as to what Alex should be doing (it will be dark where his crib is at). So co-sleeping is working well at getting Alex past this waking-up-every-half-hour thing.
Anyway, he got off to a great start this morning; eating at our scheduled time for his first feeding (yesterday morning he wouldn’t eat anything at 7:30 AM because we had to give him a couple of ounces to stretch him out at around 6 AM).
A few notes on what is currently working for us:
- He was swaddled for a long time, and I was under the impression that he would continue to have to use it for sometime to come. It turns out he likes to be free at night, just on his side instead of on his back. They say that babies can feel insecure on their back because of a “falling” sensation that wakes them up. On their tummy is ideal, but SIDS is a problem on their tummy. SOon his side it is. Since he’s five months today, his tummy might not be a big risk anymore.
- White noise is a good training tool for putting babies to sleep, but it doesn’t work forever. Our Alex is a smart one, and he gets bored easily or used to things quickly. His record so far indicates that if something works, it may only work for two days, and then cease to be effective. Whatever works with Alex has to get past the two-day rule to be a truly effective method.
- Alex has a very persistent personality (i.e. he knows what he wants and when he wants it) so a set schedule is helping immensely. In other words, Angelica and I are the parents, and we set the schedule. If babies are left to their own devices, they will set the schedule, and if they decide to get up in the middle of the night, then so be it! Alex is also doing great with a bedtime routine (he actually gets excited when we start it, because he knows whats coming next), so the schedule should help him feel less apprehensive about what to expect during the day.
- Alex is still waking up at 11:00 PM to eat. I am slowly weaning him off this feeding by reducing his formula a half-ounce every third night (he ate 4 ounces for three nights, last night he ate three-and-a-half ounces and will for the next two nights, then he will get three ounces for the next three days, and so on) until he doesn’t need it anymore. If he decides to reduce the amount he eats at any feeding, that’s the amount he gets at the next feeding.
- We’ve proven to ourselves that Alex does not need to eat at 4 AM when he wakes up. He definitely needs to be changed, but we may be able to take care of that in two ways: the two-diaper method (one diaper with a slit in it to let out excess into another diaper wrapped around that one), and weaning him off the 11 PM feeding (which puts food into his tummy that he eventually needs to eliminate).
The saga continues…