Most people seem to think that the sleepless nights only happen in the beginning; those first few months of your new cuddly ball of joy and fuss and rage and poop. The thing they don’t tell you is those first few months are not that bad.
Now, you get past the era of your child wanting to eat every ten minutes (or couple of hours). You have settled into a lovely routine of bed time activities. Maybe a once a night feeding. And soon,your child is almost a year old.
Then, some little switch flicks in their brain.
Really, they hit a growth spurt or a bout of teething or the need for emotional security.
Then the routine goes out the window and there is nothing you can do. Four, five times a night your sweet happy mini-person (because they are no longer a baby anymore) wakes up screaming. Some scientists think this is because your child is, for the first time, dreaming in a cognizant fashion. This might be true, but I think it is more of a growing pains issue with my child. Maybe with yours it will be teething or indigestion or just general fuss.
So begin the real sleepless nights. After you think you have gotten past it. After you think your child is “sleeping through the night”. After you have your own routine and have gotten used to the lovely 4 or 6 hours.
For me, even with co-sleeping, my boy has started wanting constant comfort through the night. Constant food. He tosses and turns looking for a position where he is comfortable. This position is usually right on top of me with a boob propped near his mouth for ease of access when he feels a bit peckish.
Sometimes he wakes up at 3am when I have work the next morning and decides that it is time to play! PLAY MOMMY PLAY!
Yes, I know there are ways to discourage this behavior and people talk about them often. But really, every child is different and has different needs and wants. Different methods will work or none will work. I have no solutions for you. Advice is ample, but also complete bull half the time.
So, I am have excepted that I have entered another era of sleepless nights.
And I know, this too shall pass.