At first I couldn’t imagine how I would ever not want Pippa sleeping by my side however I soon found that however well Pippa slept, I would not. Her continual moving about and loud breathing meant that I was constantly awake, waiting for her to wake up and fussing over and rocking her all night.
By 3 months Pippa was fast outgrowing her Moses basket so we made the decision to try her in her cot. However we figured that as she had been sleeping in her cosy, enclosed environment for so long we better do it gradually.
We started off by first removing her BabyMoov Cosydream (pretty much a cheap version of the sleepyhead!) and putting her in a sleeping bag. Previously she had slept with just a cellular blanket tucked in tight around her as she was too small for the bag and our flat is ridiculously hot! Luckily we found a 1.5 tog bag so we used this at first. There was no problem at all switching from the blanket to the bag and it actually made it much easier to put her down at night after a feed as she could stay warm and cosy within the bag, making the switch from my arms to the basket less chilly!
At the same time I then started putting her down for naps in her cot in the day. Bearing in mind Pippa’s naps at this point were few and far between and mostly in the car or pram when we were out and about or in my arms if we were home this proved difficult. Having never been ‘put down’ for a nap this didn’t work at all so I had to resort to cradling her to sleep in my arms then placing her in the cot. At first she would wake immediately but on a couple of occasions we got about 10-20 minutes actually IN the cot which I found brilliant!
Even now putting her down when I can see she’s tired in the hope she will drift off nicely has only happened once. Self settling is another matter and another blog!
Now that she was ‘used’ to the cot we thought we would try her in there for the first night. This first night I cried and cried that I missed her when we were getting into bed and saw her basket empty next to me. Luckily we have a video monitor, however this meant I could still watch her all night and watch her fidgeting about and where as before I would rock the Moses basket, I was now getting up every time she moved to check on her. Needless to say we had two very bad nights with Pippa waking every 2-3 hours and I was crying for a whole different reason by the morning!
At this point we resorted back to the Moses basket but this time placing it in the cot. This worked much better and I was finding that if I could bring myself to turn off the monitor screen I would be none the wiser to her movements and would only wake when she was crying…when she actually needed me!
This ended up working so well that we kind of put off taking the Moses basket away! After over 2 weeks we finally made the move and we are now on night 7 of Pippa sleeping in her own room, in the cot. She even appears to have now settled into a pattern of waking at the same times in the night and going down to bed at the same time so we finally have a bit of an evening to ourselves! It’s still not completely mastered and she still wakes numerous times before finally settling and wakes a few times between feeds but we are getting there. Now onto the next challenges…self settling and sleeping through the night!