Sunday 16 December 2012


Sometimes sleep doesn’t come easy, I have found this ring truer than ever since having Leo.

There have been nights where sleep doesn’t come at all, be it through illness or just for the hell of it. There are others where sleep washes over me like a relief, finally being able to shut my eyes after a busy day that was run on a disturbed night’s sleep, only to be jolted awake again moments later by the cries ringing through on the baby monitor.

I think my body is used to disturbed sleep now; it expects to be up at least once in the night (on a good night) and usually wakes me up even if Leo hasn’t awoken. Up until our recent house move I couldn’t even remember when the last time was I actually had a full night’s unbroken sleep.

Sometimes though Leo will sleep through out of complete chance, and I think ‘wow I could get used to this’… But then the next night we are back to the basics again, with at least one wake to contend with. 

The weeks running up to our house move have witnessed Leo waking multiple times in the night, and was exactly what I have grown to expect. He was waking up to bottom milk bottles, being a real little milk guzzler. He always has his usual 9oz bottle of milk before going to bed, but he was then waking up multiple times throughout the night for MORE milk.

He always seems really thirsty when he awakes and the milk usually does the job. I have been conscious that the milk is more of a comfort to him these days, and he likes the reassurance of his bottle of milk. But all of those past wakes got me wondering, should I keep letting him have all this milk on tap during the night? He isn’t a newborn any more…So he doesn’t actually need to have bottle after bottle any more.

I have my lazy reasons for continuing to bow down to his twilight feasts, I put my hands up to the fact that I very quickly grab the bottle and let him drink his milk, I know it does not combat the issue entirely and we repeat the process when ever he feels like it, but at that moment in time it is the quickest way back to bed.

I know if I replace the milk with water he will not drink it. I know that if anything other than milk was in that bottle he would be up and screaming the house down. Leo not sleeping results in me not sleeping, and rolling into work the next day looking like a zombie off the walking dead.

I actually began writing this post while Leo was inflicting 2/3 night feeds on me a night. Feeds that I knew he did not need but went along with anyway and here is what I was thinking:

‘Maybe the time has come to give reduce his milk? Maybe it's time to give it a go. It is not really a bridge that I want to cross yet, but the thought of a solid nights sleep calls to me…

I am not debating the fact that Leo is not thirsty; because I am sure he does require a drink. But maybe if I do brace the elements of Leo’s wrath, he may learn to accept that there is one bottle of milk before bed, and if he wants anything else it will have to be water.

Does replacing milk with water really work and teach babies not to wake up at night for a feed?

How did you get your child to go through the night and wean them off multiple bottles of milk throughout the night? Did they accept this change without any drama?

The thing that puts me off even attempting this is making the change and then having even worse nights sleep as a repercussion… Is this the only way?’

I still cannot answer any of these questions as the change that has suddenly sent Leo through the night is our house move. Obviously I am not saying you should move house to get your baby to sleep through but it’s more what’s changed since we moved.

The main drastic change that I feel has made all of the difference is that the house is quieter with no distractions to wake Leo up. He goes down at his usual time after his dinner and bedtime bath, has a bottle of milk and a cuddle and he has then been going through until the next morning, in fact I have been having to wake him up so that I can go to work.

How is your little one sleeping at the moment?

1 comment:

  1. I let pops figure her sleep thing out alone, by that I mean gave her what she wanted until it stopped. Never gave her water at night. I think what helped was changing to a beaker at night time, that comfort of the bottle had gone and she knew this so didn't bother waking! Hang in there and do what you feel is right. Although you are right in that he does not need it, it is also doing him no harm :)


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