The word alone for a new mom is like sex on legs.
When we were kids, our parents would pull up some chairs at a dinner party or at a loud restaurant and we would just pass out on the sidelines.
As teenagers, our parents would beg us to get out of bed, in order to be on time for high school. I have vivid memories taking very long naps ( please g-d, what I would do for that time again). My dad used to make us drink a shot glass of orange juice those dreaded school mornings, and then we could never go back to sleep. It was a magical parenting tool that I hated at the time, but I look forward to pulling out of my tool shed once the tween habits take hold.
Don’t even get me started on college years. In university, we would stay up way too long, and get up too early. If it was cramming for exams, dorm room parties, stressing too hard, or just being a crazy person with the taste of independence, 2 am pizza and in my case, too many nights at the Fox in Hamilton, flirting with doormen. We were basically superheroes that would function with no sleep.
And now, I am a parent.
Let me get this right.
As a generation, we had the WORST sleep habits of life…and now we are meant to teach our children good sleep hygiene?
Hmmm, that is a little bit fucked up, no?
In 2019, we are attempting to teach tiny babies to sleep a 12 hour night, to have a calm bedtime routine and a lifestyle of ETB ( early to bed).
I believe my own childhood bedtime routine was watching a lot of cartoons on TV, eating Oreos and chasing it with a giant glass of milk, and then never actually going to bed because there were basically zero limits.
And our own parents watch on like we are monkeys in a zoo. They have never heard of “sleep training” and think we are all too anxious and silly. For sure my parents are thinking to themselves, “What are these rules and structure you speak of? You didn’t have any of this and you turned out fine”.
In walks my almost 5 months old. And for way too long, we haven’t been sleeping well enough in my house.
So we did it. We did “sleep training”.
Essa my daughter turns 5 months old today.
How did we do it you might ask?
Let’s frame it like this: I am someone that does a lot of DIY- we built our own furniture, we have done our own renovations, I have even broken out a sewing machine to make shit for my kids.
But when it comes to this topic, I only work with professionals. Thanks to the sleep training guru, Amanda Jewson of Babys Best Sleep ( not an ad) I am on day 5 of my daughter sleeping the night 7pm-7am without night feeds.
Its a miracle- we went from co-sleeping and all night nursing to an actual routine.
I have my bed back!
And my boobs back – sorta.
Now that baby Essa is sleeping, I am now just starting to sleep. And when my head hits the pillow, I am sleeping like the dead.
Running a growing momsTO community (literally writing this as she naps), parenting two kids and trying to make time for the rest of my actual life is hard AF. Sleep is crucial for my mental health and for my families well being. I am a better human because of it. If you want to hear more on sleep, tune into our podcast Moms That Say F*ck, when we interview Amanda Jewson and talk all about the tips and tricks to getting a nights rest and then rest for good.
Sleep training is a magical and hard tool, but totally worthwhile. I give this a strong two thumbs up.
I am curious to know how this entire generation of well-slept kids will function. Will they need orange juice shots in the morning? Will they need a sound machine in their college dorms? Will they ever see the yellow lights of the library at 3 am or beg me to help the finish typing an essay hours before its due, at 8 am? Are we creating an entire society better than the one we now know, solely based on their ability to sleep?
Let’s see what happens…