Swaddling, controlled crying, bedtime routines, bottles, falling asleep at the breast, self-settling techniques, lavender oil, lullabies, static noise, co sleeping, sleep clinics, singing, midnight showers, block-out blinds, Chinese medicine, cranio-sacral osteopathy, chiropractic, gripe water, early introduction of solids, formula at bedtime…
We tried just about every technique under the sun to get our first born to sleep…yet nothing was successful. He woke several times a night (hysterically as a rule of thumb) until around the age of three. When he did sleep, he literally slept with his eyes partially open! There are a number of factors that impeded our success, but when all is said and done – we just didn’t win the “Sleep Lottery” when our little boy came into this world.
Truth is, every child is different and what works for the ‘majority’ of children, may not work for your child. Once I stopped focusing on what everyone else’s child was doing, and what everyone was telling me I should be doing, I felt an enormous amount of pressure lift. Why couldn’t I feed my child to sleep? Why couldn’t I rock him? Why couldn’t I use a dummy? In the grand scheme of things, is it really worth getting that caught up in what everyone else is doing? After all, what is researched and supported today, may be debunked and rejected tomorrow anyway.
Learning to trust your gut is a very valuable life lesson. Even when you think you’re running around clueless, if you stop still for long enough to listen to what your first instinct is in a situation, it will be the right one for YOU. You really are equipped with all the necessary tools to be good at this mothering gig – it’s just all the noise coming from outside of you that keeps you from hearing what’s in your heart.
Trust yourself – you are the expert on YOUR child and YOUR child is as individual as the techniques that are used to settle, sooth and support babies all over the world.