I’m back with another post! I really enjoy it when you send me suggestions on which topics to write about. Last week several of you asked me about my sleep and nights when we had babies. Here it goes:
I think that one of the biggest struggles early on in a marriage often has to do with sleep. Why do babies interrupt our sleep so much at night? We often say as parents, “Today, I had an exhausting day of work and I really need to sleep.” And it just so happens that these are the nights when the babies have cramps, an earache, a stuffy nose and can’t breathe well. Here are a few tips:
- Children are often very relaxed when they are bathed before bedtime.
- It’s very important to follow the same routine, children are like clocks.
- I also recommend giving them their last bottle a little bit later, closer to bedtime, and with some more cereals to fill them up a little more and help their stomachs relax.
- When it’s time for bed, I would often sing them a song as well. This will help to relay to the baby that it is time for bed.
Finally, we tell them that they will sleep alone in their crib and we always pray together. It’s not good to let them sleep in your arms. It can become a bad habit that is hard to break. It usually is enough to tell them that Mom is in the room next door. It’s also a good practice to leave a bottle of water within reach of the kids as they get older so that if it’s very hot, they can simply reach over and have a drink without disrupting the others.
If you have a “climber” and the baby knows how to jump from the crib and suddenly appears in the middle of the night in bed with Mom and Dad, one of you should get up and put them back to sleep in their crib. There are many reasons to have kids sleep in their own bed at night and not with the parents: intimacy in the relationship of the husband and wife, hygiene, and to teach them responsibility and independence… It’s important for children to sleep in their respective rooms. Sometimes it helps to explain how lucky they are to have a bed and room of their own.
Children understand a lot more than we think. It could be that they haven’t seen you all day and they just miss the mother’s hugs, her smell, and her caress…
Cheer up! You can sleep all night long, but you first have to educate your babies and children to make it possible.