2 Year Old Sleep Regression?
I’m convinced sleep is the biggest challenge of parenting. Or at least sleep is the driver of basically all the hardest parenting moments. My reason for this is simple – if you don’t get sleep, everything else feels harder. Being a walking zombie is hard work at the best of times. But, being a walking zombie while caring for a baby/toddler, is possibly one of the hardest things ever.
And, Mr. MPB and I fully acknowledge that Little MPB is typically an amazing sleeper. In fact, on average I’d say he doesn’t sleep well 1 or 2 nights a month.
But, since our little trip to Hawaii, sleep has been some sort of a lost art. First we assumed it was the fall-out from Hawaii and change of routine. In Hawaii we decided to share a bed with Little MPB because it was the only way he’d go to bed and sleep through the night – we made the decision to do this because it meant we all slept which meant we all had a wonderful vacation. And at 2 years old, we are now willing to co-sleep because he’s well beyond the risk of SIDS.
But, when we came home the lack of sleep continued. Little MPB refused to go to sleep in his crib. At night we’d let him whimper until he fell asleep. But then he’d wake up in the middle of the night screaming bloody murder. It would go on for hours, if we’d let it.
So, then I went away. Mr. MPB (rightfully so) decided to bring Little MPB to bed with him when he woke up in the middle of the night screaming. Solo parenting, and not wanting to hear his little boy scream, meant the continuation of our new sleeping arrangements.
But, it wasn’t a long term plan. Or so we thought. Unfortunately the middle of the epic night scream-fests have continued. Which has meant we have googled a lot!
Apparently there is a 2 year old sleep regression, and according to some it’s one of the worst. It can last up to a few months. They say, consistency is key and to keep a very regimented bedtime routine (we do this). They say make sure you child has some sort of lovey – a blanket or a teddy (Little MPB wont take one no matter how hard we’ve tried to get him to). They say provide comfort and then leave the room again – remind them you are there but that they also need to sleep on their own (this only escalates Little MPB’s screaming). Some say it’s time to transition out of hte crib to a toddler bed (we have decided that since he does not attempt to climb out of his crib, we aren’t starting the transition yet).
In the end, we bought a Gro-Clock. We had been advised by friends to use the Gro-Clock before we transition Little MPB out of his crib so that he’s used to knowing when it’s morning and when it’s sleep sleep time. But, we thought maybe now was the time to start using it to help him sleep through the night again. So, we’ve been teaching him when the moon is out and the clock is blue, it’s sleepy time. When the sun comes up and turns yellow, it’s morning time. When he’s upset in the middle of the night, we do in and remind him of this, and he tends to settle back down. After 3 nights with the clock, we have seen improvement. We are not holding our breath just yet, but we are hoping that sleep returns to the MPB household.
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