Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Sleep, of course

As you can probably imagine, sleep has become the number one issue in this house. In any household with a new baby, sleep deprivation is a fact of life. We were lucky, in that our babies came home from the NICU on a four-hour eating schedule, so we were only getting up twice during the night to feed them in the beginning. And the smartest thing we have done since conceiving these kids is hiring a night nanny to help us out. She comes four nights a week from 10pm - 7am, and gives us some nice chunks of sleep. We are becoming wusses in our old age, though, because even with four nights of sleep we are TIRED all the time.

Now that they are twelve weeks old, we are ready for them to start sleeping through the night. We were spoiled with Evan, who slept through the night by 6 weeks old, and by the time he was 3 months was sleeping 10-12 hours stretches at a time. And we didn't do anything to get him there - it just happened.

On occasion the kids have slept 6-8 hour stretches, but it is almost always on nights when the nanny is here, which is extremely frustrating! Oliver is our best sleeper right now, and will typically go for 6-8 hours before waking. Kate was sleeping up to 8 hours a month ago, but has reverted back to every 5-6 hours. And Willa is completely unpredictable, usually waking every 3-4 hours. So, we've decided to exert some control over the situation. I've been reading a book called The Baby Sleep Solution, which was recommended on several other triplet blogs as a sure fire way to get your kids sleeping at night. The first step in the book is to get your kids eating on a four-hour schedule - check. Also, your babies must be at least 9 pounds (check), eating 24 ounces a day (just barely, but check), and at least 12 weeks old (if triplets, younger if a single baby - check).

This week, our nanny is out of town, and we are on our own for an 8-night stretch (this week has been looming ominously before us for over month!), so we figure this is the perfect time to try out the book and get a routine down. Last night we fed the kids at 7pm and put them down in the nursery, and they slept (without a peep!) until 2 am - a seven hour stretch! Actually, we went ahead and woke Oliver up after we fed the girls - for our own sanity and desire to sleep, it is sometimes easier to feed all of them at the same time. Wow! Maybe there is light at the end of the tunnel after all! We will keep you posted on how things go.

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