DisruptionsPosted: February 18, 2009 Filed under: Cooper | Tags: Cooper 5 Comments »
Cooper is a baby that thrives off consistency in schedule and a set place for nap time. We have Cooper on a pretty consistent schedule. It varies slightly each day, but for the most part he eats, sleeps, and plays at pretty much the same time each day. Cooper also sleeps in his crib for all his naps and his nighttime sleep. We have a small condo so I did not see the sense in having him nap in a pack ‘n play that would take up even more room in our small condo. As long as we are on schedule and he sleeps in his crib (with minimal noise) than Cooper will nap fairly well (there are those occasional days though).
Then come the disruptions. Cooper does not do well to going down either to late or to early for his nap, eating at a different time, changing his bed time, napping/ sleeping in his pack ‘n play, being in someone else home for sleep/naps, and traveling. He is definitely a child who thrives off consistency and familiarity. This makes life sometimes hard. I have tried laying him down for naps at my friends homes or traveling with him to Texas, but he does not like the change. He gets very cranky and irritable which leads to less sleep and more cranky an irritableness.
I was talking to my step sister Kristy yesterday about all the disruptions and Cooper’s lack of flexibility. Kristy has a 2.5 year old daughter who travels with her all the time due to her job. Kristy says that her daughter can pretty much sleep anywhere and in anything. Maybe her daughter just has to get use to the disruptions because she did not have a consistent place to sleep.
I follow this woman’s blog, Chronicals of a Baby Wise Mom, and she wrote about how some babys become inflexible. She recommended that from the start you vary you child’s sleep locations so they can get use to napping and sleeping in different places. I think that is a wise suggestion. When I have my second child, I am going to defenently vary my child’s sleeping location to be other places other than in his/her room and crib.
My Ocean has to be on a set routine. He can only sleep in the dark and with no noise. We have a small condo…500 sqft and both of us work from home. I invested in a white noise machine which helps with naps. Ocean has learned to travel well but here are some things that I do to help. I ALWAYS have a heavy dark blanket with me or have my parents have one when we visit. I use this blanket to put over the window and make the room completely dark (this prevents overstimulation from light and infamiliarity with a new place). Next, I bring along the sheet from his crib and use it in the pack n play or in the crib he will be sleeping in. Even if it has spit up on it. It allows them to have their smell with them, which they really like and builds a sense of familiarity. I tried to vary his sleeping and stuff as soon as he was born and it was a nightmare. He cried for 5 weeks straight and never slept. My mother in law brought me the book, “The Baby Whisperer” by Tracey Hogg. It made everything in life easier. Ocean is the emotional temperment of what she defines as “spirited”. I very highly recommend this book based on your description of Cooper. I know a lot of moms who read the baby wise mom alongside of the baby whisperer. I don’t really think that babies become “inflexible”. Rather, each is born with an innate emotional set up and unless you get an angel or a textbook baby you have to work with that set up. Hope you find this helpful! 🙂
A. Lynn, thanks for sharing your experience with Ocean! I do have the book “Baby Whispererer Solves All Your Problems” and have referred to it numerous times along side of the Baby Wise Books. However, I have to admit, I never really read the part about the different temperaments that closely. I will have to give it another look. I like your suggestions of bring his crib sheet. I hope that might help him feel more comfortable when he is sleeping somewhere other than home. The dark blanket for the window is another great idea. I do know that Cooper will not nap if the room is bright. He prefers it to be pitch dark! After reading the Baby Whisper book, I decided to darken his room and we use white noise (fan) too. It seems to help him sleep better. It is just hard to bring the fan with you when you travel. Maybe a white noise machine is small enough that we could travel with that. Again, thanks for you all your advise. I love hearing from other moms as to what has worked for them! How did you find our website?
Oh, My husband and I went to your website and saw the movie of Ocean clapping! He is so cute!
I went to college with Anne…www.ourmoopoints.blogspot.com and so sometimes I look at the blogs on her list. 🙂
I actually read the second baby whisperer book you mentioned first. It really helped me after dealing with 5 weeks of non-stop crying. Then I went and bought her first book which I actually think I got more out of having read the second book previously…kind of funny. Taking the personality test for your baby is great because then she gives tips on how to help your specific type of baby sleep, eat, nap, etc.
Amazon sells a decent traveling white noise machine which is great for trips (called the Marpac SleepMate 980A), it’s lightweight and just makes a static/fan like sound. I’ve flown up and stayed at my parents 4 separate times in the last year and my husband and I also rented a condo for vacation last month and took Ocean with us. So I’ve got lots of little tricks for traveling.
Having a spirited baby had been a LOT of work more than I ever imagined having grown up with lots of babies around. But he is also a lot of fun. If you find that Cooper is spirited and you need someone to cry to or are feeling frustrated about something you can email me or post on my blog. I have a friend whose little girl is exactly like my Ocean but is about 6 months older. It has helped tremendously being able to go to her with issues I’m struggling with and telling each other some things we find that work.
Sorry I wrote so much!
A.Lynn, Thanks for all the advice. I am going to check the first Baby Whisperer book out of the library today so I can take the personality test for Cooper. I will be interested in seeing if he is a Spirited baby or not. Also thanks for the suggestion on the sound machine. I am going to look into that before I go on my next trip to visit my parents which is coming up fairly soon. It is nice getting advice from another mom who has “been there and done that”. Hopefully we can keep in touch! Thanks again 🙂
[…] while we were in Florida and traveling he experienced so disruptions to his schedule. He did not sleep his best. It was not terrible, but not his best. Cooper is […]