Friday, July 8, 2011

Aaaahhhhhhhhh

Sleep!

I know it probably won't last forever. We've got court on Monday and a family visit on Tuesday. These types of things are stressful for all parties involved. And when kids are stressed one of the first things affected is their sleep.

But for now anyway...my newest cherubs are sleeping through the night.

I believe it has been a wonderful combination of:

  • Consistency. Despite their protests, bedtime came every night and my expectations were the same every night. I do things in the same order every night. We read the same books every night. We pray every night. I sing the same songs every night. I play the same lullaby CD for them every night. 
  • The right night light. These kids were taken from everything familiar and plunked into our home. I believe that part of the nighttime issues had to do with them waking up and not knowing where they were at. It's a balance though. Too much light and it's hard for anyone to sleep. Too little light and they stay disoriented when they wake.
  • White noise. I bought a "sleepy sheepy" that makes four different white noise sounds for Dude. He has become quite attached to it. Even though he's only two, and we've got a bit of a language barrier, I think he understands it's to help him sleep. Before Mr. Amazing and I go to bed at night I go back into his room and turn the sheep on again. (It's got a timer so it goes off after about 45 minutes.) I think this extra white noise, on top of the fan I keep running, helps him stay asleep as the house settles down into complete silence.
  • Location. I pushed Dolly and Dude's beds right up next to each other. Dude is somewhat blocked into the corner by his sister now. They are staying in their own respective beds as they sleep at night. But I think having his sister closer to him has helped. I'm quite confident that Dude was sleeping next to someone, most likely in the same bed, before he came into care.
  • Time. As is often the case, time heals. When nighttime came it was a reminder that their world had been turned upside down. They are adjusting to our home. They are adjusting to our routines and expectations. They feel safe enough now to stay in bed when they wake up in the middle of the night.
Just when I thought I had hit my breaking point...that my level of fatigue couldn't get any more unbearable...they have started sleeping. Hopefully the pattern will stick. I'm sure there will still be nights when I'm up multiple times. But they have slept through the night all week. Praise God!!

3 comments:

noisycolorfullively said...

Co-sleepers are the hardest to adjust. I've slept for weeks on the couch with children who were co-sleepers. Eventaully, though, it does just take time. And will power. Ours more than theirs. And at night, I just don't have it.

Glad to hear the babes are resting well. It's going to make things better for all of you! Praying for your sake is stays that way :)

MamaFoster said...

i was going to say, taking a child that slept with some one and sticking them in their own bed at a "stranger's" house...holy cow that can mess a kid up-and drive us crazy.

people should bring up stuff like that even in training so that we don't have to all the sudden "realize" that may be the problem, it would already be in the back of our minds.

Sunday Koffron said...

Grrr!!!

On one hand I read this and I am happy that you and they are getting some good sleep. I am touched that you take their care, their feelings and their emotional needs so seriously and act on it.

...And then I think, "and how long before they are moved again. Have a new routine. To deal with a new set of parental priorities. Feel unsafe again. And on and on..."

Damn, I hate how this system *works*!