Postpartum SLEEP Reminders!

IMG_2328- Baby will sleep after birth/for first couple days so arrange childcare for other kids and just SLEEP. That first day you may be so exhausted you cannot keep your eyes open or you may be wide awake from the adrenaline. But as soon as you are able, sleep.

- First couple weeks are babymoon, baby perks up around 3 weeks (in our experience) and things get challenging. REST all you can in first couple weeks and have easy meals ready/ask for help in weeks 3 and 4.

- Watch for signs of drowsiness 1.5 to 2 hours after baby wakes up and soothe baby to sleep.

- Soothe baby in whatever way feels natural! Rocking, walking, cosleeping, nursing, singing, whatever works.

- It's not just the first six weeks, it's the first 3 months. Don't get ambitious. 🙂 Plan to take it easy for the "fourth trimester" - your first three months postpartum.

- Stick to consistent nap & bedtime routine for older kids. Enforce quiet time in afternoons for everyone (train them on that pre-baby arrival) BUT don't worry about making it 100% quiet, baby will sleep through some noise.

- Implement that bedtime routine from the start, recognizing the new baby will have to get use to day/night differences and you will have to be flexible: dim lights, quiet time, nurse, song, etc. Around 7 to 9pm watch for drowsy signs and try routine (to train yourself, not the baby.)

- For Mom & baby, take walk in morning sunshine and shower to wake us up. Eat breakfast.

- Get high protein snacks throughout the day and enough water.

- Around 3 to 4 months expect to see some more consistent daytime naps/drowsy windows coming: 9 to 10am-ish, noon to 1pm-ish, 3 to 5pm-ish. Watch them for them and do soothing routine. Still attempt to get baby to "bed" in early evening. Around 5 to 8 months they may cut back to two naps and by a year be down to one nap. (Yes, big windows there - who knows, really?)

- Go with your intuition. No one is an expert on your child like you, though it may take awhile to get to know each new baby and learn to read them well. Have confidence that as parents you WILL learn to read your baby's sleep cues. In the meantime, do what feels most comfortable to you, as there is no one right answer. If you want to rock your baby to sleep, don't ever let a parenting book or another person make you feel guilty for rocking your baby! 🙂 You'll hear it a million times but it's so true - these years go too fast. My firstborn, the child that nursed every two hours all night long for a year? He's now my heaviest sleeper and turning ten. I am thankful for every sweet moment I spent cuddling him to sleep.

- Each baby is so very different. My first child could not sleep unless he was in our arms or on one of our chests. He needed physical touch to sleep. Our second child would fuss and cry and not sleep as we spent hours rocking and attempting to soothe her. When we laid her down for a moment we turned around and she was passed out! Our attempts to soothe had overly stimulated her. When we lay her down and left her in the quiet she was zonked out in moments. You have to learn to read your child, YOU will become the world's expert on your baby. It may just take awhile to feel confident in that!

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  1. Pingback: Post-Partum Sleep Nptes | Taylor Birth Support