Last night I finally was able to get some decent sleep.
The little munchkin hasn't been sleeping well, so ofcourse, I haven't either. It would go something like this. At bed time each night, I would nurse her, burp her, swaddle her and then spend about 20 - 30 minutes to rock her to sleep. Then 30 to 60 minutes she would wake up again and couldn't put herself back to sleep so I would have to spend 20 - 30 minutes putting her back to sleep again and so on until it was time to nurser her and then we would do this over and over again till morning. It takes me a while to fall asleep after she does, so I would only get aobut 15 - 45 minutes of sleep before she would wake up again.
I did a little research about infant sleep patterns. I was getting so frustrated and I wasn't able to figure out why she kept waking up and couldn't fall back to sleep on her own. Apparantly when they first fall asleep, they are in a light sleep pattern that lasts about 20 minutes, then they go into a deep sleep pattern. After about an hour, they go back into a light sleep pattern in which some stay asleep, some will wake and fall back asleep and some will wake and need to be put back to sleep in the same way they are put to sleep in the first place. Once I would hear her start to wake in her light sleep pattern I would try to follow some of the suggestions I found. I would stick her binky back in her mouth (we recently gave her the binky back and it has been working out great this time), I would rub her belly, or sing her a lullaby. Nothing would help. She would wake up every time and would only go back to sleep if I would pick her up and rock her.
So last night I decided we were go to try co-sleeping in the bed. I have been very nervous to try this because I wasn't sure there was enough room in our queen size bed for all three of us and even though I am sure I would wake up very easily any time she did or if anything was wrong, I still wasn't sure it was entirely safe. But every morning after Joe leaves for work, I bring her into the bed with me and after nursing we would both fall asleep for a couple more hours. She always sleeps so well and just really seems to enjoy being so close to me while she is sleeping. We set up the bed to be a little safer for her to join us and had everything set.
The last few nursings last night she would start to cry and act like her tummy was hurting her really bad. I figured it had to be something I ate and I am pretty sure it was the pizza we had. By the time we went to bed, it wasn't any better and she was really upset (screaming) when I would lay her down flat. We were all exhausted, I felt so bad for her and I wasn't sure what to do, so I brought her swing into our bedroom, strapped her in and set it to the highest incline. She was practically sitting straight up. As soon as I set her in it, she calmed right down and passed out. She slept for four hours. Then she woke up to nurse and I put her right back in her swing and she slept for another three. Then the same thing again and another three hours of sleep. It was so nice to be able to just wake up, nurse her, maybe change a diaper and then right back to bed. I was in heaven! I don't know how long this will work, but for now the swing will be coming to bed with us and rocking her to sleep (and keeping her asleep) for me. Yay!!
I can't believe how much she loves that damn swing. Often during the day, I will try to cuddle up on the couch with her. She will start to fuss and cry and after trying everything I can think of, nursing her, rocking her, changing her diaper, walking around with her, the only thing that that she wants is to just sit in her swing. Some mothers will try to get their baby to hang out in a swing while they can get things done or just have some time to their selves and their babies will have nothing to do with it, but it seems we are kind of the opposite. I will try to keep her really close to me, wear her in my sling and sleep right next to her, but sometimes she is just happier in her swing. I suppose I shouldn't complain though, atleast now I am getting so sleep.
Update: Here we are 2 days later and we are getting lots of sleep! I am only nursing 1 or 2 times during the middle of the night and the rest of the time we are sleeping. I am so relieved. I am not sure how it's going to work out, keeping her in her swing all night. I guess we'll cross that bridge when we get there.