Tag Archives: eat

31Jan/14

with love, Sofia: Early sleep, enough sleep = the best sleep

Before motherhood, my sleeping pattern was inconsistant and usually bonkers. I’d sleep at about 4am and be up at 2pm, on my off days. If I were filming, I’d be up at 6am and asleep at 3am, no, not much sleep at all.

Now that I’m a mother of 2 beautiful children (mashaAllah) and a stay at home mum aka SAHM, I have at least 14 hours sleep at night and about 4-6 hours during the day. While a 1 year old requires 12 hours at night with two 2 hour naps during the day.

When I say routine, I mean all round routine including nighttime feeding.

I have been blessed with good sleepers but this could also be because I put them to sleep when they let me know when they are sleepy.
“How does a baby tell you they are sleepy?”
Simple, they yawn. Us grown ups yawn when we’re tired right? But we of course fight this tiredness because we are either too busy during the day to take a 45 minute nap or dont want to sleep early at night (because it just isn’t cool to sleep early).
They also get grumpy (“I wanna go to sleep!”) and their eyes go red (“put me to sleep already”) or they as usual, cry (“what is wrong with you? I need to sleep!!!”)
When your baby is tired and you dont want any fuss, put them to sleep when they want to sleep.

My daily routine with my first born was pretty strict because from what I have read and now experienced, a happy child is one whom has had enough sleep. Even my in laws thought I was too strict, but I promise it was is well worth it!

Keeping a routine was pretty easy but this came with alot of sacrifices too. I would have to be home at 4pm everyday (if I were out) to get the baby bathed and ready for bed.
By 5pm, lights were out (I have a street light right outside my window so there is no need for a night light) and we were in bed for a little talk and then it was susu time. She was asleep by 530pm.

In the beggining, Ariana would be up 3-4 times at night but after changing her day time routine, she would only wake up twice at night. How? Here’s a basic sample of a daily schedule I had for Ariana:

3-6 months old
630am – wake up and susu
730am – bath time – susu
8am – nap
10am – play time/social time – susu.
11am – nap
1pm – play time/social time – susu
2pm – nap
4pm – play time -mandi time – susu
530pm – sleep
930pm – susu
1230am – susu
3am – susu
630am – wake up

To avoid too many feeds at night, make sure you feed baby long enough during the 9pm feed so that you could eventually push the midnight feed to a later time allowing you more sleep at night and baby full too. Once you’ve conquered that battle, routine can look something like this….

6-12months
7am – wake up and susu
9am – bath time – susu
10am – nap
12pm – play time/social time – susu
2pm – nap
5pm – play time -mandi time – susu
530pm – sleep
930pm – susu
1am – susu
630am – wake up

To reduce the night feeding, you have to make sure you feed well during the day. If you feed so much at night, baby wont be wanting to eat during the day because he is already getting enough at night. So try switching the ‘feeding enough at night’ to being ‘feeding enough during the day’. So by the time your child is a year old, you can cut one night feed at a time starting with the 9pm feed then eventually eliminating the 1am feed. Once that is done, your childs routine will look something like this:

12 months – 2years
7am – wake up – susu – breakfast
9am – mandi – susu
10am – nap
12pm – lunch – play
2pm – nap
4pm – snack – play
530pm – dinner – mandi – susu
630pm – sleep
1am – susu
7am – wakeup

Ariana has now started play school which requires he to be in class by 930 am but I send her at 9am so that she can play with the children who arrive early (working parents) and also because the school setup a little obstacle course for them everyday. So her (She turns 3 in April) current schedule is:

7am – wake up
8am – breakfast – mandi
9am – school
1230pm – lunch
2pm – nap (sometimes)
4pm – play
6pm – dinner – mandi
7/730pm – sleep
7am – wake up

Of course it is sometimes a battle put your active toddler to bed at times, especially during nap times but they will give in soon enough because they know they are tired. Just take her to bed and layan that cute little imagination for 5 minutes and then tell her that its time to relax, close your eyes and go to sleep. It works so well, even mummy passes out by 830pm too!!

All the best and I hope this helps you.. please keep in mind that this is only from my own personal experience on putting my own children to sleep. If you have any inquiries at all, please dont hesitate to get in touch and I will help best way I can. Also, I am not a sleep therapist nor am I a doctor. I just think of ways I would try myself and if what I do or suggest doesnt work, the grab a couple of books (I would recommend Gina Ford books) and find out from an expert :p