What You Really Need During Those Long, Lonely Nights...

Babies are completely reliant on us. They need their parents or caregivers to feed them, clean them, dress them and help regulate their emotions.

They look to us for how they should be feeling, if we're calm and relaxed, this tells them that they're safe and can calm as well. 

If we're stressed, on edge, or upset, our little ones can sense that and will follow our lead. When they're in that state, it makes it really difficult for them to calm enough to fall asleep. 

That's why they need us to take the lead and show them our calm. 

 

But what if the very thing that we're stressing about won't happen unless we calm down?!


It's a vicious cycle right? 


I fully understand this because it was me. I experienced those late-night intrusive thoughts filled with all of the negativity, anxiety, and hopelessness with both of my babies. Not only was being awake and bouncing my baby for hours exhausting but the emotional toll that I was putting on myself was almost unbearable.

The second time around, when I had Jack, after I'd become a sleep consultant but more importantly after I'd grown and gained so much knowledge as a human and mother, I was able to do things differently. I had more tools at my disposal and was able to recognize when my inner thoughts were slipping and shift my internal narrative to a more positive outlook and that changed things drastically for our family and for my mental health.

One thing that I'm so lucky for is that when I was trying to get my son back to sleep, I had access to my husband if I started to spiral with negativity. I would take a break and my husband would take over trying to get Jack to sleep. He was always so calm and even though I was mama, the calmness of dad helped my son relax enough to sleep pretty quickly compared to his anxious or upset mama.

Even if Jack was struggling still and we had to switch again, especially through those early days of witching hour and PURPLE crying, giving myself a break would help me calm and reset my mindset to be able to be that guiding, calming presence for Jack.

When taking a break wasn't an option or when I was trying to train my brain to think more positively, I worked on the narrative that I was telling myself. I knew that I was becoming upset when my mindset would shift to a negative one so switching the thought to a positive, accepting outlook helped. Below I've included some examples of the negative thoughts I'd told myself and some of the more positive mantras that I traded them out for. Hopefully they can help you too! 


Instead of  "Omg, will he ever sleep? I feel so alone", try... 
 

Instead of "This is taking forever, I'm going to be up all night. I'm never going to sleep again" ,try...



Instead of "She just won't calm down, she's impossible.", try...



Instead of "I can't give her what she needs", try...

Instead of, "Why won't my baby go to sleep? Something is wrong with them!", try...

*Also, if you ever suspect there is something wrong, please see your pediatrician first and trust your gut

 It can be difficult to do but another thing that can help is to ensure that you're discussing how you're feeling with others. This is something that I struggled with but being more open the second time around was so much easier than keeping everything to myself as I did in the first few months with my first. 

If you're looking for more help with your newborn than moral support, I offer a Newborn Sleep Guide as well as work 1:1 with families to help their newborns sleep better (without sleep training as formal sleep training isn't recommended until 16 weeks adjusted). If you want to discuss which of these services would fit better for you or would like to purchase one as a gift for a friend, contact me here

I hope these affirmations help you mama as much as they helped me. And one last tidbit to remember, whatever it is you're going through, this too shall pass

 

Sending lots of love and solidarity, 

 

Jessica, 

Your Baby Sleep Coach 

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