The No Cry Sleep Solution

Test Mommy Shannon and Baby Joshua – Chico California USA

Age when using The No-Cry Sleep Solution:
18 months

Baby’s age now:
Two years, three months (27 months)

When you first met Elizabeth, what was your sleep situation?
Horrible! Joshua went from waking every three or four hours at six months old to waking every two hours and then every hour or less much of the time. Not only was I a totally sleep-deprived working single mom, but my son, my little baby, was totally sleep deprived. He was exhausted, and he was not functioning well from being so tired all the time. I began to lose confidence and started to feel like I should never have attempted attachment parenting and co-sleeping, I even began to hate nursing him in the night. I felt very angry and resentful. I always felt like crying.

How is your baby sleeping now?
Incredibly great! I am thrilled to report that he sleeps all night. He is a terrific sleeper. He goes to bed very, very nicely. He takes good healthy naps, and he is bright and alert and loves to play because he gets his much-needed sleeping time now.

Did you ever use the cry-it-out method?
I tried it once. It was pure hell. Taking the advice of a magazine and some friends of mine, and my pediatrician, I caved under the pressure and tried CIO. Oh, it was awful. He never stopped crying. That whole thing about patting the baby’s back and “calming” him is just not true. He was so upset, and I was too. After four hours of torture, I snapped back to knowing, “Hey, this is my child, I don’t believe in this; so why am I doing this to him? There has to be a better way.”

What was your life was like before you met Elizabeth?
I was at my wit’s end. As a single mom working as a court reporter, I was doing transcribing jobs at night from about 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. I would be working on my computer and be interrupted by a “non-sleeping baby”every hour, every two hours, every 15 minutes, every half hour. I was totally exhausted and stressed out.

How did Elizabeth help you?
First of all, she was a calm “email voice” in a storm. She has a great sense of humor and I knew at once we were on the same wavelength. I knew she could help me, which was a huge relief. Just knowing that somebody shared my same feelings and did not feel that CIO was the answer. I was also relieved not to hear the answer that many other people gave me, which was, “They will eventually outgrow that.”

Elizabeth’s ideas worked right away. It did take Joshua months, to start sleeping long chunks of time (like four to six or more hours), but right from the beginning, I could see improvement and I knew that this would work for us. That helped me enormously to see progress right away.

Elizabeth helped me by giving me support when I was a desperate, needy mom with no one to help me. I really appreciated her patience and faith in me. It was a Godsend.

How does it feel to sleep all night?
It is WONDERFUL TO GET SLEEP. WONDERFUL TO BE CENTERED AND CALM. I probably should have slept more once my baby was sleeping, but I was so happy to get to sit down at my computer and get my work done. I was so, so, so happy to have an actual chunk of time for myself. I was able, very soon after starting the plan, to sit at my computer at night and work for four-hour stretches. This was wonderful. It truly made a difference in our lives. For my son, it meant that he was not sleep-deprived. He was functioning so much better in his daily life. He was finally getting good rest. We both needed that.

I want to add this:

Since I was a nurse-on-demand breastfeeding mom, many of my friends said: “Oh, look out. You better not do that. He will never go to sleep on his own.” What was frustrating is that no one had a good alternative to the CIO method. It just seemed so mean to be holding a tiny baby there in your arms, who had just eased into sleep in the most softest gentlest manner and then just say, “Hey, Baby, Guess what? You now have to wake up and scream your way into dreamland.” So I was very, very glad to hear from Elizabeth. She had REAL ANSWERS that worked for us.

Excerpted with permission by McGraw-Hill Publishing from The No-Cry Sleep Solution (McGraw-Hill, 2002).

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