Find out what works for you and your baby and stick to it

The Daily Telegraph (Sydney) - Best Weekend - - FRONT PAGE -

Noth­ing pre­pared Jess Wat­son, the mother of six-month-old Lachie, for the re­al­ity of a new­born. She says: “Ev­ery­one told me to catch up on sleep be­fore I had my baby and go­ing by ev­ery­one’s com­ments, my ex­pec­ta­tion was that I wasn’t go­ing to be get­ting a good night’s sleep for a while once he was born.

“But I wasn’t pre­pared for the ab­so­lute ex­haus­tion. Lachie was pretty good dur­ing the day — he would sleep in blocks of any­where from 30 min­utes to two hours — but dur­ing the night I re­ally strug­gled. I would get anx­ious as bed­time ap­proached and would feel so alone when I was up in the mid­dle of the night, I felt like the only per­son in the world awake at 3am. Peo­ple would tell me to sleep when he did dur­ing the day, but I just couldn’t, so by the time night time came I was so tired and I re­mem­ber be­ing so emo­tional all the time.

“I also re­mem­ber feel­ing at the time that this would go on for­ever, but in hind­sight it was just for the first six weeks or so. I read rou­tines are im­por­tant so at night I would wait un­til sun­set and as the sun dipped be­low the hill I would pop Lachie in the bath then give him a mas­sage and a feed and into bed. He re­sponded well to that un­til about the four month mark. Then a sleep re­gres­sion hit and all that went out the win­dow. It was such a shock to the sys­tem, here I was think­ing I had a good sleeper but it was like some­one had pulled the rug out from un­der me.

“In des­per­a­tion one night I took him out of his bassinette and into our bed and started co-sleep­ing. He would wake, have a quick suckle then straight back to sleep, it was so good. He still sleeps with us and wakes be­tween two and four times a night but it’s so much eas­ier to man­age.

“My ad­vice to new mums would be to find what works for you and your fam­ily and stick with it.”

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