I definitely wouldn’t say Lincoln is on a very regular schedule and I’m okay with that. I know some parents are adamant about getting baby on a set time schedule and I’m sure down the road he will have regular nap times/eating times/etc. But, for now, I am following his lead and just trying to establish some routines, as opposed to a true schedule.
We do little things…. like once Lincoln is up for the day, we always take Riley out and we sit on the deck. Then, we come back in and Lincoln sits in his bouncy chair while I make/eat breakfast. It’s just one simple ‘routine’ we do every day.
Another part of the day when I am working to establish a routine is bedtime. Despite some sleep issues throughout the night, going to bed has become much easier. For the first three months of his life, Lincoln wasn’t ready for bed until 10 or 11pm; but sometime in the last few weeks, he/we started moving that up and now he is going down around 7 or 7:30pm.
Husband and I were already giving him a bath at about the same time every night. But after Lincoln fell asleep (say around 8pm) and then woke up to eat again (maybe an hour later), I would keep him up, play, talk to him etc. One night however, after Lincoln had an epic meltdown around 11pm that included almost 30 minutes of screaming in my arms before finally falling asleep, I started thinking, maybe he is just overtired…
So, we started moving bath time up to about 6:30 or 7pm and then off to bed. And now when Lincoln wakes up, even if it’s just 45 minutes later, I nurse him quietly and let him fall right back to sleep. It’s been really great so far and has ended the nightly crying sessions that were becoming more and more frequent.
I’ve also begun utilizing the crib a bit. He still sleeps in the cosleeper, next to our bed for most of the night; however, when he first goes down and until about 11pm or 12am when he inevitably wakes up to eat, I’ve been having him sleep in the crib. I think it’s good for him to get used to spending time in there and he doesn’t seem to mind at all.
This earlier bed time has been nice for husband and I too. I feel like we are able to actually spend some time together, even if we just lounge on the couch and watch tv. It’s nice to connect with him after a long day.
So, despite the frequent wakings, things are improving on the sleep front in some ways. And I’m sure, several years from now, I’ll look back and think about how fast this time flew by…