Before I get into schedules and sleep talk, I thought I'd give a little background info on how I became one of those schedule mommas and why I love having my kids on a schedule.
I didn't get Campbell on a schedule until he was 10 weeks old. I was absolutely exhausted and knew I had to do something to fix it. Campbell was a very fussy and challenging baby. Our days had no rhyme or reason to them and everything about life was chaotic and unpredictable. I know some babies do just fine without being on a strict schedule but that most definitely was not the case with us.
The reason I chose Babywise is because it's the only baby book I had laying around my house and I have no idea if I bought it or if someone gave it to me. I was so tired I couldn't even comprehend what I was reading so I asked Scott if he would read the book then tell me what to do. He spent an evening reading it, explained the concept and how it worked, and we got started the next day. I was instantly blown away by how much more smoothly life was going and less than 3 weeks later our baby, who was waking multiple times a night, started sleeping all night long. I never looked back and knew that from that point forward I would forever be a mom who followed a very rigid schedule.
I like having my kids on a schedule for three main reasons:
1.) Our days are predictable
2.) My kids sleep 12 hours at night
3.) Once the kids are in bed, I get to spend one on one time with my husband
I could list a number of other reasons why I'm pro-schedule but it would make for too long of a blog post (ha!).
One concern moms tell me they have about schedules is they feel they will have no flexibility in their life but I actually feel like I have more flexibility with a schedule because of the predictability of our days. There are a lot of great baby books that help show you how to get your baby on a schedule. I personally like Babywise because of their PDF (parent directed feeding) concept. I would try to explain it but it would take way too long so if you're interested in learning more you should check out the book! It's different than a lot of other baby schedules because it isn't a clock schedule. Our first feeding of the day and last feeding of the day are always at the exact same time (and I decided what those times would be) but everything in between is different every single day according to the baby and their needs that particular day. Sometimes Bennett gets hungry after 2.5 hours and sometimes he can go 4 hours. I like that I don't have to pay attention to the clock but instead let Bennett decide when he's hungry or when he's sleepy. It's interesting because his feedings and naps typically line up around the same time every day (give or take 30 minutes) but they aren't at the exact same time.
For me and Scott, we just like being on a schedule. We're both really strict with it and we've felt like it's made our life as parents easier. I know schedules aren't for everyone and every family needs to do what works best for them and for their baby. I personally love that I can get my babies to sleep 12 hours at night at a really early age. I love that I can put them to bed and have some time in the evenings to myself. I also love that I get to sleep. I would be grumpy, sad, and lose my patience easily if I was getting woken up in the night. It doesn't bother some but it bothers me so getting my kids to sleep through the night as soon as possible is best for me and my whole family who has to live with me!!
I get asked for a lot of tips and advice when it comes to scheduling your baby so I'll share more on that next time! Until then....