Silja's Sleep Diary: nine months old
by Taru, Silja's mom
is nine months old now and
settling in a new environment with her family after the move. Add to
that teething and new motor skills in full development and you get ...
the worst nights ever.
Silja is nine months old today, a
big baby milestone in my view, as she's
now existed as a separate person for longer than I carried her inside
She's now napping on the big bed near me while I write this on my
little desk in our new bedroom.
She fell asleep when I was nursing her and I should really move her
into her cot that's just next to our bed, but I don't want to risk
waking her now. It's been almost four weeks since we moved from London
to Switzerland and we need all the peace and quiet we can get.
Chaotic schedules and teething
On one hand, it's amazing to be here.
Instead of a cramped flat in
London we now have a large house and a garden, the train to central
Zürich takes 9 minutes and in just an hour we can be up in the
incredible Swiss Alps. On the other, moving is always a bit of an
upheaval, and we're all missing our old friends and the things we used
to do in London.
Figuring out just how to shop for groceries (or how to
put out rubbish!) has been a small battle - but I like to think we're
We don't have our normal routines to structure the day, but lots of
things that just need to be done, regardless of how the baby feels
about it, so Silja's sleep schedule has become really erratic.
And while all this has been going on, she's got two new teeth now at nine months old and has
learned to crawl properly, as well as to stand up.
Silja's days and nights
On average our cute nine months old is up at
around 8am, then wants to
rest and breastfeed a
bit around 10am. She won't take a proper nap at this time unless we're
traveling somewhere in the car - or possibly on the excellent Swiss
After and early lunch at around noon she's ready for a good nap, up to
2 and a half hours if we're lucky. She may also doze off for a bit late
in the afternoon, but mostly it's just one nap a day. She seems tired
in the evenings by 8pm, but with so much going on, she's often
struggling to fall asleep. And with so much going on, unfortunately I
haven't had much energy to deal with it.
One thing I've been trying to do, though, is to teach her to
asleep in her cot, as it seems I always have tons to do still
downstairs after her bedtime, and it's no longer safe to leave her
anywhere else. I still breastfeed her before I put her to bed, and
usually she's more than half asleep once she's nursed. If I try to lift
her to her cot she normally wakes up again.
After three rounds of this last week I just put her to her cot to see
what would happen. She wasn't too impressed and cried a couple of
times. I didn't leave her, but picked her up and calmed her, however I
didn't nurse her any more and didn't take her back to the big bed.
This took a good long while, but eventually she fell asleep calmly,
apparently hypnotised by the soft lobster toy I was gently swinging
above her (desperate times call for desperate measures). Since then,
she's gradually become much happier about staying in her cot. She might
wrestle with the lobster a bit, and last night she couldn't get enough
of standing up against the cot bars - even when she was in her sleeping
bag. I left her twice, thinking she was fast asleep, only to find her
awake, standing up and gurgling excitedly, a few minutes later.
I thought that falling asleep in her cot would make her less likely to
wake up at night, but unfortunately this hasn't (at least not yet)
worked at all. I feel her nights are the worst they've ever been and
she can be up at least four times, however I don't really notice or
wake up properly when I get her to and from her cot to nurse.
It's not too bad as I don't need to be up early
in the morning, however
we'd all sleep better without a baby traveling all over the bedroom
The new home, the new teeth and especially learning all the
new motor skills must be quite a lot to digest and I am not surprised
her sleeping is disturbed, however I feel she's getting quite old
enough to sleep for longer stretches.
I hope she'll eventually figure
this out for herself. She's already been so close of sleeping through
on several occasions and it's quite disappointing still not to be
anywhere near there.
On the other hand, we've got lots of other things to think of now and
can't worry too much about sleep. We've planned an afternoon of
exploring our new hometown, and now Silja is awake and ready to go,
gurgling at her older siblings who have come to the rescue of their
nine months old baby sister as I finish
this. Better be quick.