The evolution of getting our son to sleep has been an epic journey in itself – mainly because as soon as we get into the routine of using our tried and tested method, he decides he fancies a change. Sometimes, I imagine it being a bit like Cluedo:
‘Is it in the baby carrier, walking around the dining room, with the white noise?’
‘Is it pushchair, round the block, with the sun visor down?’
‘How about…’ etc etc
I asked my wife with help accumulating the various methods we’ve employed over the last 6 months, and we’ve come up with the following.
1) ‘The Over the shoulder bedtime bounce/Sleepytime two step’
Ned never liked being held like a traditional baby (Horizontal, in your arms) – the earliest method was chucking him over the shoulder – almost TOO far over in fact – and walking around, performing a light bounce as we did so. A variation of the over shoulder method was no bouncing, but performing a sort of half box step dance – looks stupid, but appearance is not what you care about at 2am.
2) ‘The Baby carrier walk around’
My personal favourite – the baby carrier harness was like a front facing backpack, that Ned slotted into, so he was chest height, and I could walk around the house while he surveyed all that he owned/was going to put in his mouth in the future. Ned has become to heavy (fat) for this now, and his rapid leg movement has made it night impossible to be comfortable while he’s in there anyway.
3) ‘The pushchair pushabout’
The pushchair was a bit of a wear down tactic – we popped him in the pushchair and pushed him forwards and backwards in the dining room until he nodded off. At the start of the process, Ned would be fairly miserable, but as the pushing and pulling continued, his whinging would become weaker and weaker until he was asleep. I didn’t like this one much, as he always went to sleep with a frown on his face, like he’d been decieved by his parents into sleeping, but hey, a wins a win.
4) ‘The Baby walker back and forth’
Short lived, but another ‘wear down’ style method. Popping him in his walker, then pulling him forwards and backwards. Ned never complained about this method – probably because of the blinding sleep I hurled him around the living room – I may have even seen a smile or two – but it always ended with him in a standing position, face down on the walkers table – hopefully with a soft toy between table and face so he didn’t get a table shaped crease running down his forehead.
5) The situp knee sleep bounceathon/bouncearama/bouncefest 2012′
Fairly new, and currently having a 100% success rate. Simply sitting him on one kneee while holding him, then gently bouncing the knee until he drifts off.
Obviously, all these, once he’s asleep, result in him being transferred to his bed – you can’t keep a baby standing with his face planted on a plastic table for half an hour. It’s frowned upon.