You know what’s funny about Baby Sleep Day?

I had to look up what it was. Maybe that’s because the biggest thing new parents have in common can be summed up with the question, “Sleep? What’s sleep?”
When you’re a mom, Baby Sleep doesn’t just get one day; it becomes what your world revolves around. Whether you champion schedules or routines, sleep training or co-sleeping, naps at home or naps on-the-go, sleep (and how much your baby is getting) is always at the forefront of our minds.
Baby Sleep Day was created by the Pediatric Sleep Council “to emphasize the importance of sleep to a baby as well as family members in general”. [1]  Now every year on March 1st, you can be reminded of how much sleep you are (or are not) getting.

So if Baby Sleep Day is to sleep what Valentine’s Day is to love and romance, I imagine that puts you into one of two camps.

Camp #1: You LOVE it!!!
Sleep is important to you and figuring out your own sleep routine as well as your baby’s is something that’s been motivating and successful. You could talk about sleep and how to do it better all day long.
Camp #2: You HATE it or choose to unsubscribe.
Sleep is also important to you, but the sleep journey is NOT going well. In fact, it’s become such a sore topic, even reading this blog title makes you roll eyes. And if it’s not making you feel like a failure, then it’s just something you don’t care about discussing either way. People have too many opinions and every one needs to mind their own business.
As a First Time Mom with a 14 month old, I get it.
I’ve been in both of those camps.
Sometimes on the same day.
Sometimes in the span of two hours in the middle of the night.
My daughter, Georgia, needs LOTS of sleep support. She’s one of those kids that gets the title “Barnacle Baby”. She has a temperament that’s borderline marsupial. In her sweetest dreams, we would be kangaroos and she could live in my pouch forever. Or at least until she goes to college or something. And even then, she may not make it past Welcome Week.
 Our sleep journey has gone *nothing* like I thought it would before she was born. I got hit with a hard 2×4 to the face titled Expectations meets Reality.
But we found our way. And this is how I jump from Sleep Camp to Sleep Camp like the social butterfly I am.
Sometimes I love it. I love to figure out her needs while making sure I can meet my own, and when I do, I feel like I could also run for president.
But sometimes I hate it. Sometimes, when we’re in the thick of a developmental leap or teething or who-knows-what and Mom Rage pops up because *no one* is sleeping, I feel like I may need to go run off a cliff.
The postpartum hormone swings are so gentle, aren’t they?
I’m going to share a couple tips that helped me the most on our unconventional sleep journey.

I hope they’ll help you, regardless of what camp you’re currently in or what sleep strategy you’re choosing for your family.

Tip #1: Rule out underlying medical issues.
Contrary to a common belief, there is always a reason why a baby is crying. It’s the only language they know, so it does mean something when they do it. Babies go through more growth in their first year of life than they do for the rest of their life. They more than triple their body weight! Their brain grows millions and millions of synaptic connections. They learn how to sit, crawl, walk, talk, chew and do some other hilarious and amazing things along the way. We never question meeting their thousands of needs during the day, but for some reason, it’s become common not to have that same mindset at night.
I understand baby sleep is frustrating because it waxes and wanes. As soon as we figure it out, we get put back at square one. Sometimes more frequent wake-ups, neediness, and fussiness are due to normal development, like separation anxiety, leaps, and teething. But other times, it’s due to illness, infection, or an underlying medical issue, like reflux, food intolerances, iron deficiency, oral ties, etc. It’s up to us to know which it is and address the need accordingly.
If you feel like something is wrong, go with your gut. Get the second opinion. Keep seeking. Find the answer so you can find the solution.
Tip #2: If it feels wrong, stop doing it.
Forget about how it looks or who is giving you whatever advice. You can listen to the doctor, hire sleep consultants, trainers, buy books, guides, knowledge, etc. BUT if what you are doing feels wrong for you and your baby, STOP. Take a beat. A deep breath. How you are caring for yourself and your baby needs to be in integrity with who you are and what you stand for as your baby’s mother. If it’s not in alignment with you or doesn’t make sense, it’s okay to ask questions until you figure out what DOES make sense for your family. When we know better, we can do better.
The only time I hear a mother speak of regret or feel shame about her decisions is when she took advice that went against her gut instinct. Our intuition as mothers is powerful. Our survival as a species is largely due to these instincts; how a mother cares for and protects her babies is what drives a species forward.
Your baby is a person, just like you. With a personality and a temperament and unique needs, likes and dislikes. No one knows your baby better than you. You have permission to get a second opinion and to ask questions. To seek out other advice or counsel. To find the Mom Group who is doing things the way you are so you know you’re not alone.
The goal is for the entire household to have peaceful sleep, and that looks a little different for every family.
This year on Baby Sleep Day, take heart that whichever way you know is best for your family is the right way.
Always on your team,
Alex Mosley
Alex believes that celebrating is a lifestyle and stands for a world where growth and health are the highest currency. Originally from the Dallas area, she happily moved back to Texas in December 2019 with her husband, Clay, after a four year stint in northern California. Since then, they've birthed three businesses and a baby, Georgia (3 months). As an upper cervical chiropractor, Alex owns and practices at The Specific Chiropractic Centers of Austin. Along with her husband, she is also part owner in a local CBD shop and digital media company. She is a personality test junky, loves keepin' it real and co-hosting her health podcast "You Crack Me Up". Her favorite ways to de-stress are having a quick dance party, watching cookie decorating videos on Instagram, or anything on HGTV. The way to her heart is through deep conversation over bottomless coffee.


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