Although I have been a stay at home for most of my son’s life, there was about 2 months where I was working a full time job with an hour commute. That’s all fine and dandy until your child decides they don’t want to sleep. I didn’t figure out how to deal with all the stresses of working and being sleep deprived until towards the end of working. Here are 5 things I figured out the hard way.
This is a given, but what makes child care “good”. First, someone who is nurturing in the sense that they can give your child emotional support when you aren’t there to do so. If your child has trouble falling asleep on their own, what will the care provider do? Will they rock your child or will they do day time sleep training? Or worse, will your child go without a nap?! I was lucky with our daycare lady. In 2 days she was able to get my son down without any crying, something I still have trouble with. The point behind this; if your child feels comforted by the presence of their childcare provider and they are getting a sufficient nap, they will more than likely sleep better at night.
4. Night feeding
I didn’t figure this out til months after i left my job. My son was still waking up at night to feed and our pediatrician recommended cutting him off cold turkey. No more breastfeeding this boy! I breastfed him for 18 and a half months. I know, I know, that’s a long time. The cry it out method just didn’t work for us and I wasn’t ready to give up the “medicine” to every situation.
After Liam was weaned for about a week or so he started sleeping through the night. At first it was hell, I won’t lie to you but so worth it. Our pediatrician actually recommended us stop the night feeding around 6 months, but I was too stubborn to listen.
I’m not telling you to stop night feeding by any means, I’m just sharing what helped my child start sleeping better.
3. Go to bed earlier
I know that sometimes it just doesn’t work like that, but when I started going to bed at 8:30 instead of 9:30 I felt so much more rested. Its simple, and if you can afford the time to do it, I don’t think you’ll regret it. Even doing it two times a week or after a hard night it will make a difference.
This applies to your child as well. If your baby is going to bed at 10pm, there’s the first place you can take action.
2. Stay updated on development leaps and sleep regressions.
This is probably one of the most helpful things I can share. If your child is about 4 months old and can’t sleep, odds are it’s the terrible no good sleep regression. Most parents don’t even know that’s a thing going into parenthood. It’s the ugly truth. Any time your child learns something new or experiences a new level of mental awareness, it can affect their sleep. But guess what? They adjust. Do what ever you can to keep stay in routine.
You’re little one misses you. You’ve been gone all day and all they want is a little of your time. Try to understand when they have a lot of energy or can’t sleep. Right when you get home take the time to play with them, giving them undivided attention.
Another thing that’s important to do is make a weekly menu. This will save all kinds of time and heart ache. It will also keep you from ordering pizza…again. If you do all of your grocery shopping on a weekend morning, you’re done for the week! You also save time with trying to decide what is for dinner. Chose one day of your weekend to be lazy. For me, I chose Saturday. What ever day you are being productive, meal prep so you can spend even less time cooking.
On your lazy day, have something planned to do with you little one. Take them to the park, to one of the rides in the mall or even just ice cream. The important thing is to spend a couple hours making everything about them! Every Saturday my husband and I take my son to the state park to hike. He absolutely loves running through the woods and spending time with his mom and dad!
Those are just a few things we have done that helped me when I was working! I hope it works for you! If I missed anything leave a comment below! Thanks for reading!