For those of you who know me or have read my blog post about the 4 month sleep regression, you will know that it really did hit hard. Freya then got into a really good pattern of sleeping 7am-7pm, spoiling us into remembering what a full night’s sleep undisturbed felt like. So when this sleep regression started it was a shock to the system.
From early on I have followed the Wonder Weeks app and we also have the book after I was recommend this app by another mum at baby massage. The Wonder Weeks is basically a guide to tell you when your baby will be going through a “leap,” which is in other words a major developmental stage for them. So this will usually tie in with them learning a new skill, such as rolling over or learning to walk. During this stage they explain that their sleeping pattens go out of the window as they are almost too excited to sleep, or will often wake up earlier than usual, again, excited to get up and start practising their newly acquired skills.
I definitely have a love/hate relationship with the Wonder Weeks App. It has an alarm that goes off when Freya is entering a leap. Which is good in a way that it warns you and that you can prepare for what is about to come, but other times it is bad in that you can see on the chart when the leap is ending (which sometimes is weeks and weeks away), and your heart sinks a little. In other ways its nice to know (well, hope) that it is just a phase and that hopefully when the leap is over your normality will resume.
For any parents I would recommend following the Wonder Weeks for your child as it really is helpful in telling you when the leaps are, how long they will last for, and what your child is learning during this time. It does help you to understand what is going on a lot more.
We had got into a really good night-time routine with Freya , sleeping 12 hours a night and two good sleeps during the day. During this leap Freya has been struggling more to fall asleep, when previously she would almost self settle after her night-time bottle of milk. She then wakes up at least once during the night, crying out as if she has had a night terror and will not be able to settle herself. She will need me to calm her down and settle her back to sleep. She then is waking up anytime between 5:30am and 6:00am, with no way of being able to settle her back to sleep; she is up and awake and ready to start the day! As a result, her day time sleeps have also been much more of a struggle where she is fighting them even though she is clearly very tired.
So, as you can imagine we are pretty tired over here at the moment, and just hoping that it is all again just another phase. But through all of these long nights and unsettled, broken sleeps, I think of the phrase “the nights are long, but the years are short.” And when she needs me to keep her calm and fall back asleep, my heart feels like its going to burst with love for her and that strength that comes from a mother’s love keeps me going. Those sweet moments in the middle of the night I will miss in years to come, when she is off out with her friends partying. For now, she is my baby and that unconditional love is so strong that it will keep me pushing through this leap.
I’d love to hear from anybody who has just come through this leap (leap 7) – if you have any advice and tips to help.