Yawn! I do remember the days where I used to research everyday on the topic of “sleeping through the night for breastfed babies” and ending up realizing that 6 months or 1 year is tooooooooo far when my little one is just 1 week old. I was always counting per week when will my little one sleep longer. I used to cry to my Mom, and I am always telling her how much I appreciate her effort in taking good care of me when I was young because I never thought that parenting will be sooooo difficult. Yikes! mixed up hormones and sleep deprivation really changes someone.
One very important tip that my Mom shared to me that I want to share with you as well (but the stubborn me did not follow this until my little one was 1 month old, yes I survived almost a month of disastrous sleep deprivation) is to sleep while your baby is sleeping. YES! I hear you! It is impossible for us who are used to sleeping straight for hours at night and just stay awake straight in the morning and afternoon. When I heard this, I was like “Mom, I can’t do that because my little one wakes up every 1-2 hours!!!”. Little did I know that this will actually be my little one’s norm until he reached about 4 months old when he wakes up around 3-4 hours. I don’t know though if I will be able to this during the first month if I have a second baby.
So, during my sleepless nights and countless research, I found this link that has very important information on longer sleep for little ones. It explained why around 4 months the baby will sleep longer because of the disappearance of the Moro reflex. Read through that link and it is very informative.
What can you do now that your baby is younger than 4 months? Well, I know well-off Mommas who bought those expensive reclining sleep sofas/chairs but I will not advice you to do the same because I’ve read from an article that this is actually the worst place for you to sleep while nursing your infant. So, what can help you in your sleepless journey? My secret is breastfeeding your little one in a side lying position:
In the picture above, instead of using your hand as a pillow, use a proper and firm pillow. Use a pillow that can give you leverage while breastfeeding your little one, and if needed place a firm pillow also at your back to help you in the position. When I learned this position, I was soooooo thankful to it that I was able to rest/lightly sleep while breastfeeding my little one. Okay, I co-slept my little one from 6 months until around 1.5 years old, but I’d rather have co-sleeping as your choice because there are studies that co-sleeping is dangerous for your little one. There are two options for you if you do not want to co-sleep, which are:
- Use a co-sleeper bassinet
- Use a separate crib
I have tried using a separate crib for my little one but when sleep kicks in, it is so hard to rise up and place my little one in the crib. So when my little one reached 6 months and when I think that my little one can cry if something is bothering then I started with co-sleeping. But please note that this was my personal choice. Do not follow my co-sleeping technique if you feel it is not safe or it is not a good choice for your little one.
So going back to the topic of getting more sleep, there is still good news 🙂 Things will get better 🙂 There is a light at the end of the tunnel girl! Soon, you will realize that wow! you’ve survived breastfeeding!