Once upon a time you were able to sleep in your cozy bed from the moment you touched the pillow until the moment the sunshine laid its first ray of light on your cheek – or your pet gently nudged you with its sweet paws – or your partner served you a delicious breakfast in bed and 2 dozen of red flowers freshly cut from your garden….
Since you had a baby, sleep seems to be a long lost fairy tale and all you can think of is that your baby constantly wakes up during the night and you have not had a full night of uninterrupted sleep since the day she was born.
Dear mama, I want to share a secret with you: babies are not meant to sleep through the night!
Especially babies who are breastfed will wake up every 2-3 hours because your milk is digested easier and faster than formula and your baby will wake up to eat to satisfy his hunger.
For the same reason and if we take practicality in consideration, babies are not meant to sleep in their own room when they are newborn. Think it this way. Your baby has just spent 9 months in your womb, following your rhythm, falling asleep at the sound of your heartbeat and getting to love you by the sound of your laughter. Babies are not equipped to be far away from the only certainty they have when they are born, their mother: YOU!
How would you feel if after spending all your life in close contact with someone you absolutely adore, you had to be suddenly separated it from her and left figuring out how to sleep on your own and communicate your struggles in a language you are still learning?
Do not be fooled by the books that promise that if you let your baby crying it out, she will be trained to sleep through the night in the short period of 3 days.
In my experience, the ‘crying it out’ method always backfires and the only lesson a child learns is that she can not rely on her parents for comfort and safety. I am saying this with zero judgement and with buckets of compassion for all the exhausted women out there, who had no idea that being a mother would imply kissing their sleep goodbye.
I invite you to be gentle with yourself and be open to the idea that perhaps we have just been misled all this time while we were told that to be a successful parent we needed to have a sleep trained baby. The truth is that this is not the case and no one will ever ask your daughter, the day she decides to apply for a job at NASA, at what age did she reach all her milestones and how fast.
These first fast paced days of motherhood are for you and for you only. Nobody is watching and nobody gets a prize.
These days are for:
More naps and less showers
Healthy meals and instant happiness chocolate indulging
Late night bonding and milk-full breasts
Endless piles of laundry measured by the spectacularity of the miracle you have just created and birthed.
Your baby will grow FAST and you will sleep again, I promise you that, and these tender and difficult days will pass.
These days are for falling in love with your new family.