Sleep Training Your Second Child

Assya is 8 and a half months old.
She sleeps in her cot, next to our bed.
Many times, she takes her naps in her stroller.

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When Zoard was this age, we lived in a hotel and we had to be quiet, not to disturb the guests. I did his sleep training when he was about 10 months older than Assya is now and it was horrible. He slept on a mattress and I had to prevent him of getting out of bed by laying down on the floor, in a certain pose. I remember, he pulled my hair so hard, I had to wear a hoodie when I was doing his sleep training. He was strong and furious. And he could already talk a bit and my heart and soul fought a battle through out those days.

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For a year and a half, Zoard could only fall asleep with the help of my breasts. If I tried moving away from him, he would wake up. This picture, you see here, is Assya. She is being exclusively breastfed but she has a very different relationship to nursing, compared to her brother. “Nene” – as she calls it, is about eating/drinking and that is about it.

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When she is in her stroller, she turns her head to the side and you can easily tell, she is about to fall asleep.

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Since Assya can stand up, you cannot just put her down to sleep and hum a few melodies. She kept standing up so one had to put her back on her tummy and pat her bum until she would close her eyes. This ritual got longer and longer.

WHEN IS THE RIGHT TIME TO START SLEEP TRAINING?

I am sure that there is never a perfect time to do this.

Zoard just started kindergarten again, after a month of summer break.
Sad things happened in our family.
I started getting low moods.

I still wished to start Assya’s sleep training, because I knew that putting it off will just make it worse.

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Our sleep training went like this:

Get support.
Keep telling yourself that it will be super emotional (bad) and it will only get better, later IF you do not give up!
You can promise yourself a reward for each battle.

It was NIGHT time when we started the sleep training.
Here is our bed time routine:
Bath
Breast (not letting your baby fall asleep while nursing is key here)
Bag (sleeping bag)
Blinds (to make the room dark)

The first time lasted for 160 minutes!
Assya had red, swollen eyes the following day from crying so much.

During the sleep training, I had to hold her down to prevent her from standing up.

The second time lasted for 90 minutes.

I stayed at home for nap times to practice more!

A few times I got lucky because she was so tired, that she fell asleep right away.

Today is the 5th day and it took me 20 minutes to put Assya down for a nap. She does not cry any more.

Breast, Bag, Blinds

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So more specifically what we did was:

My husband entertained Zoard while I was in our bedroom with Assya. He also cooked for me as he most often does. Sometimes, we switched and I read to Zoard while he was in the bedroom with Assya (for example, when it was 2 and a half hours long to help Assya fall asleep).

I always tell Assya that it is going to be “sleepy, sleepy time”.
She lets me put on her sleeping sack and we make the room dark. She starts nursing and I sing rock-a-bye baby to her.

I put her in her cot, on her tummy. That is how she sleeps.

When we started the training, I stroked her back or patted her bum if it made her calm down. (Sometimes it did not. For example, stroking her head made her more hysterical.)

Now, I just put her down and I start humming while I lay down close to her. Then I move farther away, I sit on the floor or our bed.

I move again, so she does not get used to me being in one place.

I move close to the door. I keep humming.

I go out and either I continue humming or I stop.

At half time of her nap, she woke up yesterday and today (meaning: after 50-60 minutes) so I went back to the room. I stroked her twice and started the humming and moving farther away from her.
I noticed: she does not get up to stand up anymore. She just needs time to let her eyelids get heavier and heavier…

THANK YOU AND PLEASE FEEL FREE TO LEAVE A COMMENT.

On Instagram: @zoardandassya

 

 

 

 

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Back From Bangkok

We left the island and our current home (a five star hotel my husband runs) to spend two nights in Bangkok. 

I love business trips that Zoárd and I can tag along. This particular one was superb! So many things happened to Zoárd for the very first time. It was exciting to witness it all!

My husband and I had to come up with a plan to change our diets after this trip ended. I will share some details on that as well.

We have been to Bangkok at least 15 times. Bangkok is huge, lively and you can see many interesting things. Sadly, the air pollution is so horrible it is wise to stay indoors. 

It is not a baby friendly city. My husband had to carry our strollers up stairs a dozens of times each day. We tried to use our baby carrier as an alternative but everything is only a success story for a while. At least with Zoárd.

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This was taken at a mall after Zoárd’s nap. He was satisfied with his situation at the time. We were trying to find an HTC case for my husband. People spend so much money on gadgets here. You would think: “who doesn’t?!” Fair enough but Thai-s do not earn as much as Westerners and they take a bank loan so it is not surprising to see staff with similarly good cell phones as my husband’s. Which is just something that I find interesting. 

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What I  noticed in Asia (Thailand, Japan, Singapore, Malaysia) is that you do not have to blush to have your picture taken with large stuffed animals. Which is good news for me!

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I was explaining to my husband that someone we know was complaining about small things in relation with a hotel room. And there was a period when I did the same. Reflecting on it I would say it is the syndrome of “being wealthy for five minutes already and you think nothing is good enough for you”. I am glad I can see this now and I started to appreciate again the hotels we stay in. 

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I placed the duvet on top of the carpet and Zoárd loved it. These two pictures really happened at the same time. I was sitting on the sofa looking at my boys reading. I felt great!

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Zoárd had a nice time in the hotel for sure!

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We took him for a swim which we never do at our hotel.

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My husband was very confident about our pool adventure and after a few minutes I stopped thinking about pigeons bathing in this city pool.

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Zoárd also had his first shower!

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And he sat up! So Baby Led Weaning is around the corner. 
http://www.babyledweaning.com/

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We were having lunch at Hyatt Erawan and a waitress asked us if we wanted a high chair for Zoárd. Our answer used to be no thank you, he cannot sit with self-control. This time we said yes so Zoárd sat in a chair for the very first time! It was awesome to watch him!

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We do not mind spending money on food but with clothes it is a different matter. Especially since I told myself I will not shop clothes for a good while. I am already passed a quarter of a year so I am taking it seriously! However, I could not resist trying on this beanie even if it was for men. I liked it but it was over a 100 dollars! Hm. No thank you!

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Mos Burger. It’s Japanese, it’s fast food. I became a vegetarian because of fast food! I used to flip burgers. But when you are at a shopping mall hungry as a beast sometimes you go for the easiest lunch option. A lettuce fish burger! I ate it without cheese, without onions, without mayo. Like I said: lettuce fish burger!

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After you see my other Japanese inspired lunch you will think I have an Angel and a Devil inside my head when it comes to picking out my meals. And you are right.

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I would love to explain to you what a pig I am (when the devil inside my head wins) but I want this story to be short. I can eat lots of desserts. And it is not cool anymore! This is a cheddar cheese and honey toast with ice cream.

Resolution: no more desserts in Thailand. My husband is joining me on this.  

Do you feel you have to be radical with some things in order to stop yourself from doing an act that you would be ashamed of later?