March 04, 2006

Sleep Alone

Posted by Xun  |  10 comments

To raise a healthy baby is all about to get him/her eat well, sleep well and play well. Sounds simple. Yet, you can easily amass thousands of books on how to get babies sleep well alone. With so much ink spilled, so many experts debate, then concede, then insist, we still do not have a finite answer to simple sleeping questions such as: Should babies sleep alone? Sleep on her tommy or her back? Should you pick up your baby if he /she cries? Do not we have an expert whose name is Richard Ferber who has a "Ferber" sleeping method for baby?

I choose to do what I believe is good and convenient. Emma sleeps on her back. When Emma was still a baby, we picked up her whenever she cried. At night, she slept with us and she often fell asleep while nursing. However, I do not feel very good about it. I believe a baby should sleep alone.

When Emma went to China, Emma slept with my mom. I tried to persuade my mom to have her sleep alone. My mom rejected the idea on the ground Emma was not able to sleep by herself. She did made an attempt unsuccessfully, though.

Now Emma is back, to have her sleep alone become my first agenda.

The first night was relatively smooth. Just off the airplane and with an almost sleepless night, Emma was so sleepy she did not make a sound when I put her in her bed. But she woke up around 4 the next morning. Looking around, she was so despondent and so scared. She dropped her mouth and cried. I took her out so she could snuggle with my mom.

The second night was a battle. Around 10 o'clock, I took her to her bed. No. No. No. She screamed and kicked, wailed and pushed, tried so very hard to get away from me, but I held her so tight, and pretended deaf to her crying, she eventually stopped struggling. She must have been so miserable when she finally exhausted herself and fell asleep. I kissed her and silently said my sorry. Again she woke up around 4 in the morning and tried to walk out of the room to be with my mom. I held her and said to her, while showing her the clock, which was signing: "4:30", "Emma, when this 4 becomes 5, you can go out." She cried a little and gave in. So we waited and waited, as if for ages. Finally the clock signaled "5", I let her go. Before that, I said: "Emma, tomorrow you need to sleep till 6 in the morning. Ok?" She nodded.

The third night was a lot easier. Emma simply buried her head in my shoulder and cried in protest. She asked for milk, I gave her milk; she asked to pee, I took her to pee; she protested that her nose was running, I dried her nose; She cried: "I want my grandma. woo...woo." I said firmly, "no, Emma, you cannot go out to play with grandma until next morning at 6". She cried. I said:” Emma, how about I sing to you?" Then I started singing, "Twinkle, twinkle, little star." "Rock bye baby"... 20 minutes later, Emma fell asleep. She woke up around 6 the next morning.

The fourth night was similar.

During all these days, I was having a very good time with Emma. She likes me, loves me, I know. We played together, we played her piano, we feigned ducks quacking, we took her Minnie and doggy to go out swinging, we play hide and seek, we sing. I hold her up and swing her high and low... I spend every minute with her.

The fifth night we had a happy night. At 9, her bedtime, suddenly Emma looked at me and said, "I want to read". I was so overjoyed. I brought a dozen of books to her bed, and then we read. I made up stories, she made up her stories, and we talked and talked. There, there, slowly, slowly, she lay down and fell into sleep. I looked at the clock. It was 10:20.

Now Emma has got used to sleep alone. We talk, we make up stories, we flip through this book and that book, and I sing to her till she is sound asleep.

How I love her.

Saturday, March 04, 2006
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leo said...

How I love her too. My smart daughter.

Oh my heart would break with the crying but it was the best thing for you to do for her. I would love the story time with the books--"Sweet dreams to Emma". Goodnight little one.

Xun said...

Thank, jeannie. I will get the books. "Sweet dreams to Emma," what a perfect name, it belongs to Emma already.

Please come back to visit Emma again. Thanks so much!

Oh grammar sometimes is not good. As far as I know there are no books titled Sweet Dreams to Emma. I meant I would love the quiet time with the books with a little one; and in quotes I was saying goodnight to your Emma--I apologize for my writing mistakes.

And the book you asked about "Living From Your Soul" is not a children's book; but the principles can be taught to a child as they are growing up.

Xun said...

It is ok, Jeannie. I can make up one. Every night we have "sweet dreams to Emma" anyway.

Thanks a lot.

Peace said...

You are a great mum!

Xun said...

thank you, peace. I will always try my best to be a good mom.

Thanks for leaving a comment on my blog. You have a very interesting blog. See that you're such a dotting parent! We are chinese by heritage, born in Malaysia but now citizens on Canada.

BTW, the word Chow in "" is a slang for food. Our last name is not Chow! :-)

Thanks Xun, we have added you to our blog roll.

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