Friday, November 12, 2010

Controversial Reading: Baby Wise

It's the most controversial book since the Bible.

Ok, well, maybe not quite. From my knowledge people don't burn Baby Wise to prove a point. But if words were fire this book would be up in flames.

It's a book so many people swear by. In fact I've heard more moms say the principals of this book worked wonders for their child more than any other book. Even more so than the Dr. Sears whatevertheheck book. I've heard raves from "my baby is so happy now" to "It was a lifesaver." But I've also heard the other end of the spectrum-- THIS BOOK WILL KILL YOUR BABY.

Not an exact quote, but close.

I haven't read Baby Wise or any other baby books for that matter. I swear, the easiest way to make a bunch of money these days is to write a book about baby advice and BOOM! You're rich! I hate that there are so many books with so many contradicting facts and principals and just decided to skip the whole book thing and learn by trial and error.

Then I went back to work.

And my daughter stopped sleeping 5-6 hours and instead has gone back to waking up every 2 hours. And I am a zombie. And being a zombie with 45+ hours of work to do every week just isn't good. Especially when you're operating heavy machinery like cars, or breast pumps.

This has been going on for long enough. Long enough for me to know it's no longer a growth spurt, or a phase (well maybe it's a phase to some degree, but I'd rather it not continue for months). My grandmother told me that if there's something that's stressing you out either do something about it to fix it or get over it, but there's no use stressing or complaining about it. So I've decided I need to do SOMETHING.

What am I doing? We're sleeping in the guest bed in her room. She wakes up every two hours and it takes me awhile to go back to sleep. Sometimes she'll wake back up the moment I set her down and climb back into bed. When I first returned to work I fell asleep with her in bed with me and she nursed throughout the night. Before that she'd sleep 5-6 hours so I'm wondering if that formed some kind of habit, and on top of that, perhaps being in her room is waking her up. If she sleeps with me, I can't sleep. If she doesn't, I'm up every two hours and it takes me a good while to fall back asleep, so I'm at an impasse.

The past week and a half I've started a new bed time routine where we give her a bath, massage her, get her in her nighttime diaper, read her a story and feed her, but then I'm like 'What now?' I usually feed her until she's asleep then set her in her crib but I think putting her in her crib awake is the trick. So I tried that but then she cries and cries until you pick her up. Then I feed her again and... You get the idea.

I need to try something new to see if it helps. I'm not asking for a full eight hours of sleep. Heck, four hours straight at this point would be nice. It's effecting my work, and that's really not good. In fact, it's very, very bad. So bad that I had the worst live shot experience of my life last week but didn't dare pull the "but I have a 4-month-old who isn't sleeping yet" card. But maybe I should have, because I'm sorta on the you-know-what-list right now because of it. And one bad move takes ten good moves to make up for it. So by this time next year, if I'm lucky, I'll be out of the dog house.

My husband says it's not the end of the world if she goes to bed late and wakes up all night for the first year, but that's greatly because he isn't waking up with her, or going to work after a half-nights sleep.

So, I'm desperate. And I'm considering turning to this raved about/ cursed book for ideas and answers.

I've probably read an entire book worth of facts on why I should stay away from the book--given to me by people who haven't read the book themselves, but hate it anyway. So I think it's only fair to read the actual book now, with an open mind, to see the other side and form my own opinions of it.

I know the book is about schedules and many are against schedules but truth is, sooner or later my daughter will be starting childcare and the only way someone watching multiple kids can accomplish things I'm sure, is to have some sort of plan. It doesn't mean I'm going to take the advice as scripture, or put Lil' J on a strict eating routine we can't deter from and starve her in the process. It's just that we're going to try something new. Because what we're doing now aint working out. At least not for me. And considering the fact that I provide the food and shelter for all of us right now, I think my opinion rules.

Some people are ok with having their children sleep with them, or wake up through the night for over a year, but I'd rather find out whats working for the other set of the population who have children don't need that.

I know this may just be a time in life where I have to survive with lack of sleep, but I can't just go along with that not knowing if I can do something else that can make this situation better for us all.

Besides, I'm pretty sure Lil' J would be happier with a happy, healthier, well rested mommy.

I just bought the book on Ebay for 99 cents. If it sucks I'll tell you about it. Then burn it.

Any other books you recommend while I'm at it? A friend from work with her second baby, also a 4-month-old said baby 411 has lots of tips and different routines to try. I think I'll buy that one too.