Transitioning baby to crib

Baby girl has been sleeping in our bedroom since day 1. The SIDS recommendation (and what we were told leaving hospital) is to have your baby sleep in your room for the first 6 months. As 6 months was approaching, I was absolutely dreading moving her out of our room and into the nursery. There’s just something about having her right next to me. I’d often wake in the night and take a quick glance of her sleeping. To be honest, I also checked her quite often to make sure that she was breathing!

this is the "bassinet" that our daughter has slept in. still fits her at over 6 months!
this is the “bassinet” that our daughter has slept in. still fits her at over 6 months!

Then the week leading up to 6 months, everything started to change. Suddenly, our girl started to sleep horribly. She started getting up just as often if not MORE than she did as a newborn. At 5 months, she was only getting up once in the night; requiring a diaper change and feed. She was sleeping 8pm-7am. It was glorious! I felt like I could do getting up once in the night forever. Then at 6 months, the minimum she’d get up in the night was 4 times. Sometimes it was every hour. Or twice in an hour! It was brutal. I feared that I was losing my sanity. I was on high alert re: wondering if I may start getting depressed. After nearly a month of horrible sleep, I decided that IT WAS TIME. It was time to attempt sleep in the crib in the nursery. While I wasn’t convinced that it would help her to sleep better, it was time to try it. In fact, I assumed that sleep would be just as bad or even worse for the first couple of weeks. But we were barely surviving as it was. The sleep deprivation gave me the push that I needed to transition baby girl to her nursery at night.

So here’s how the transition to her sleeping in her crib has gone so far (keep in mind that prior to this she was waking every hour crying):

Tuesday night (Oct. 27th) – 8pm. Lay her in the crib on her back. She rolled to her side immediately. Then an hour later, she woke up, fussed (but not crying) and rolled herself to her belly and slept until 2:30am straight! I kept checking the monitor every hour though 🙂 Then she was up from 2:30-4am WIDE AWAKE. She finally went back to sleep until 8am.

Wednesday night (Oct. 28th) – 8pm. Lay her in the crib on her back. She rolled to her side immediately. Then an hour later, she woke up screaming. She continued to wake every 30-60 minutes crying until 12:30am. I took her to our bedroom at 11:30 to see if she’d sleep in the bassinet. Luckily, she wouldn’t go for that either so I went back to the nursery to persevere. At 12:30, I decided to lay her down on her belly. Something I didn’t want to do BUT I’ve realized that she’s waking because she can’t get to her belly without waking herself up. I was leaning over the bassinet with her head on my arm (while she was on her belly) and patted her back. She fell asleep and slept straight until 7:30am! HALLELUJIAH.

Thursday night (Oct. 29th) – This was the night of the tree crashing into our house (more on that later). It’s so fuzzy re: how she slept that night. Insurance would have paid for us to sleep in a hotel for up to 3 nights. With a baby, that didn’t sound too fun. Plus, I feared undoing the progress we’d been making up into that point with her sleeping in her crib. I believe that she was up a couple of times before 11pm and then slept straight through to 7:30am. The next morning was the first time that I was awake prior to my baby waking (I couldn’t sleep any longer after 5am due to the events of the day before). It was so fun to hear her wake up and go into her nursery. She was so excited to see me!

Friday night (Oct. 30th) – Went down around 8:30pm. Fell asleep on belly (did the letting her head lay on my arm/back patting thing). She didn’t wake up again until 5am! We did a diaper change and feed and she went back to sleep in her crib from 5:30-7:15am.

Conclusion: I am so glad that I decided to start the transition to her crib and have stuck with it. I cannot believe how much better she’s sleeping. I think she needed the space that the crib affords for her to move around in her sleep. And she also needed to figure out how to sleep on her belly and not freak out. The two teeth buds could have played a secondary role as well. I don’t assume that it will be smooth sailing from here on out. But I am thankful for the increase in sleep. I was being knocked down emotionally and physically when I was waking every hour. I’m also so glad for baby girl that she’s sleeping better! She needs good sleep to grow and develop well.

P.S. We have a sound machine in her room and have kept the night light on. We turned the night light off one night and she woke up in the dark screaming. So for now, her room isn’t pitch dark at night. But if she’s sleeping, we don’t care 🙂

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