When you're pregnant with your second child you hear over and over again how it will be easier this time. For the most part it has been but for the past two months, it hasn't been the case, at least in regard to Hope's sleep. Or, lack of sleep in fact.
When she hit 8 months old, she stopped going to sleep on her own, she stopped sleeping through the night on occasion. She started waking up A LOT. She started wanting boob every time she woke up. She became difficult to get to sleep. If the boob doesn't do it, I'm pretty much sunk. Like right now. She's wailing up there again.
John and I have decided to take some drastic action. We are not "cry it out" people. We don't like it. It didn't work with Emily the odd time we tried it and both of us have a hard time listening to our kids cry for us and ignoring them. We've also found that it doesn't work that well, it doesn't teach them to fall asleep on their own in a nice way. On the other hand, I can see why some people get desperate enough to do it. I've done it with Hope before but I never let her cry more than 10 minutes and in the past, that was all it took before she fell asleep anyway.
These days it's a completely different story. We're at a loss of how to get her to sleep. Singing, rocking, letting her play in her crib, using her crib aquarium thingy, breastfeeding... none of it works right now. So, we resorted to the method we've shunned in the past. Last night we let her cry for an hour before going in. Tonight, she's crying again and from experience, I'm betting she'll cry for an hour again before we go in. I wonder how long she would go if we didn't go in there. I'm not willing to find out.
You're probably wondering why we're letting her cry for an hour and then going in there anyway. Seems cruel, I know. However, last night, after the hour was up, I went in, picked her up and she instantly fell asleep in my arms. Of course, then I have to try to get her out of my arms, which often means she wakes up again. You see the problem. Anyway, last night, she did stay asleep and then slept until 4:00 a.m. 4:00 a.m.! We're hoping that this is teaching her that we won't hold her the whole night long, that we have to leave the room, and that, damn it, she better get on board with this whole sleep thing.
I know this is opening up some potentially nasty cans of worms out there. Everyone has an opinion, parent or not, on letting kids cry. I'm sure do. I just needed to get this out there so you can see the pain of what we're dealing with right now. I hate hearing my kids cry. I hate to be the reason for it. I also hate getting up 3 or 4 times a night or more and then getting no breaks during the day so that I feel like I'm constantly on the verge of tears just from shear exhaustion.
In other words, nah, it's not really "easier" the second time around.