Baby sleep (or lack thereof)

I believe all the little nuances with my twins can be traced back to eating and sleeping. The eating issue I think has been mostly solved, but the sleep – not so much. Help!

My little C is a bit high maintenance. In her defense, she has reflux. Weeks of eating issues have been somewhat solved by Zantac, a new bottle (Playtex ventaire), and a new way to burp (higher on my shoulder). So, this post isn’t about feeding. It’s about sleep.

Here’s something that’s going right and is probably cause for celebration: the twins have revealed to me a nighttime pattern that they’ve stuck to now for a few weeks. We do a feed around 9:00, try to stuff them as much as possible, in bed at ten-ish, and magically they stay asleep until 3.30-4:30. B even made it to 5:30 once. They are fed, and sometimes only breastfeeding is enough, and back to sleep. They wake up between 6-8. So. One thing is going right. Bedtime is in the rock n plays in our bedroom.

But the naps – oh, the agony.

There is no rhyme or reason to their naps.

B is actually a good napper. The duration of his naps are at least 1.5 hours long and sometimes up to three hours. However, there isn’t a pattern to them. With the exception of his first nap soon after waking up, I don’t know when he will nap. Many times he falls asleep on my shoulder after eating and then I put him down. But I’m putting him down asleep, which isn’t good I know. In addition, for naps only, I’m breaking the number one rule of sleeping – on his stomach. Here’s the thing – he has a flat spot on his head, and the doctor told me he can take naps on his stomach to help correct it as long as we are watching him. Of course, I was terrified to do this but his naps were more like cat naps and I was curious. So I put him down on his stomach in the pack n play in the living room, and watched him like a hawk. He LOVED stomach sleeping. Ever since then, his naps are on his stomach in my living room. I wouldn’t do it upstairs in his crib because then I couldn’t watch him. But that also means he isn’t getting used to his crib. These stomach naps are deep sleep naps. Hence why he is suddenly a good napper. I hate breaking this cardinal rule but I check him constantly and it was doctor-ordered. And now his naps are great. Just no pattern to them.

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B boy loves his stomach naps. I stand over him and bite my nails.

So that’s B. Now C here, she’s another story.

Her naps are horrible. Maybe once a day she will sleep 1.5 hours (usually the first nap) but after that and especially in the afternoon and evening, she cat naps. And by that I mean she throws major tantrums and screams while I try every position, pace the house, rock her, swaddle, pacifier…etc. And maybe after a while she will finally fall asleep, but as soon as I put her down she’s up again, screaming. She seems like the lightest sleeper as well. And the answer to B’s sleep issue won’t help her – she hates being on her stomach. Don’t even get me started on tummy time, another battle. I can get her to sleep. I have options. I could put her in the Ergo carrier. I could drive around the block. I could push her in the stroller. But I’m not doing that every afternoon and evening – that’s crazy. She becomes super overtired and then becomes so fussy. But she’s not naturally fussy, she’s just tired. And of course I end up rocking her, usually, so she falls asleep in my arms and that’s not good either!

I feel like we are developing some bad habits and I keep getting mixed pieces of advice from the Internet. The twins’ adjusted age is only 5 weeks. Shouldn’t they be sleeping all the time? Should I make the room dark for naps? Bright so they see the difference between night and day? They are too young to cry it out. I pick them up, rock, back down. But for how long? How do I get C to take a deep sleep nap? As I type this, she is cat napping on my knees as I rock them back and forth but at least she’s not crying. Last night at this time I paced the house, putting her in every position until it was time for the bedtime feed.

Then there’s the issue of getting them on the same schedule but when it comes to sleep, that seems virtually impossible. Should there be a nap schedule at this age? They are 10 weeks. And how do I get lil C to actually nap? And how much trouble am I in when I let them sleep wherever they will, since when I put them down in their cribs they wake up when their legs rise in the air? Currently I’m having good luck with them falling asleep to the vibration in the bouncer…ugh. Why can’t they just – nap?

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Yes, I even brought the bouncer outside. Fresh air seems to calm her down and she ended up falling asleep in the front yard. I’m not trying that at 8pm though.

And because I love them, and they are the best thing that ever happened to me (besides marrying my husband of course – did you see the sweet post he wrote? Made my day.) here are a few pictures of them just being cute.

Future posts I want to write – baths (ugh), tummy time (ughhhh) and endless spit up.

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