Sunday, June 12, 2011

The Book Report: Baby Smack Talk

Workout: 3.5 mi run in 33:10 min!

It's 8:33 pm as I write this and I'm barely sitting down. This weekend has been a whirlwind and I wouldn't want it any other way :)

I'm just so happy I ran today, I had planned on going yesterday but my BB(Baby Brielle) had other plans and wanted to get her weekend started promptly at 6 am. Richard went this morning so I was going to put it off until tomorrow, but then I just kept thinking "it's going to feel so good after you finish!" I kept repeating it a gazillion times and I'm so glad I listened to myself :)

How do you guys get going when you really don't want to?

I'm thinking the weekend posts will be like a very laid back book report. I am the worst at forgetting if I ever even read a book, much less what the plot was about so at least I'll have something other than my aging mind to reference!

This week's report deals with two books that I've read that deal with babies. As you all may know, this blog could have been named me.against.the.sleep.deprivation for very a very good reason: my BB :)

It was all very expected and I think I was doing fine up until I went back to work :( I tried doing the exercise thing before work and I still marvel at the fact that I was able to wake up (sometimes as early as 4:45am). Just crazy.

I started reading Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child because at 7 month's BB was still not sleeping through the night. I skipped right to the 5-12 months section and then I went back through to try to get a better understanding of baby sleep patterns.  I found it so funny to get a straight up "IN YO FACE" you're wrong section dedicated to the Secrets of the Baby Whisperer.

The authors share some opinions, like the importance of naps, but they are different and theirs styles kind of remind me of this clip:

In particular,  Weisbluth claims the "dream feeding" that the Baby Whisperer recommends is complete non-sense. His description of it is quite funny!

I've read both books and have found them both really helpful, so I'm not going to smack talk about anyone here. Instead, I'm just going to list the things I learned from each of them.

Disclaimer: I am by no means a baby expert and these are just some of my experiences with the topics that are covered in the two books. I do recommend reading both books for learning about different sleep strategies, though - they were really helpful for me :)

Baby Whisperer:
  • Believes in an EASY going schedule: Eat, Activity, Sleep  -> You Time. For someone that had NO interactions with babies, this was very helpful. I really tried to stick with this but had some hiccups in the nap department. I could never time the naps right and so I got very little "You" time for me. I do a variation of this now, but mine is more like S(E - optional)AEY. Mainly because breastfeeding really helps BB go to sleep and I'm sticking to that as long as I can.
  • Helps you define your baby's personality and gives many tips for what works best with each type.
  • Recommends a structured night time routine and an early sleepy time and focuses on listening to your baby and meeting their needs.
Healthy Sleep Habits:
  • Main premise is letting your child learn how to sleep on their own. In case you didn't guess, RC -= Mitchell! (RC's team "self-sooth.") He's not completely mean when he tells you to let them cry-it-out, he tries to get you to see that letting babies that are older than 4 months fall asleep on their own is equivalent to giving them their food or medicine. This was EXTREMELY hard for me, but luckily it only took two nights for BB to learn how to fall back asleep on her own. That first night was a doozy, but she picked it up fast :)
  • Believes that healthy naps => healthy sleep habits. He asks you to plan your schedule around the baby's nap time. This can be difficult to do, but very well worth it.
  • He also recommends a structured night time routine and an early sleepy time. This was a major revelation for me, because I didn't listen to the Baby Whisperer. I thought putting BB to sleep around 10 was the best and would give me the chance for a longer sleep period. Ha ha. Ha ha. What a fool I was! BB always started getting fuzzy around 7, too - duh, Cynthia! BB was tired! Now she goes to sleep at 7:30-8 and is so much less fuzzy
In the end, I learned that you have to keep trying things until you find what works for your baby. I recommend having lots and LOTS of patience and letting your baby reach the sleeping-through-the-night milestone on their time. Of course, I try to give my BB the best chance at doing that by trying to follow a good nap schedule, establishing a good night-time routine and still having lots of patience - I wish they sold patience in bulk sometimes :)

Have you guys read these books or know of any others that you'd recommend? Do you even believe in reading parenting books? I am all for them because learning to be a parent is a life-long process IMHO!

Hope you had a great weekend :)