Much like in the colic post, if you’re desperately googling this at 3 am, I have so been there. Pretty sure I didn’t see my older son awake during daylight hours for a looooong time. Nope, 1 am – 6 am was his jam. Wanting to be held, showing off his arm and leg movements, cooing and just otherwise partying when I desperately — and I mean desperately — wanted to sleep.
So he wouldn’t sleep and wanted to be held and my mom guilt would roll in because I was so incredibly frustrated, and I felt bad for being frustrated, and then I felt more frustrated. But friends, there’s a reason that sleep deprivation is in the torture wheelhouse, because it will take you to new depths of all sorts of not good feelings for sure.
So my doctor gave us the idea to start making sure my son got a lot of sunlight first thing in the morning (at a time you choose as the morning – otherwise babies will choose like 5 am). And then keep them in the light/indirect sunshine as much as you can throughout the daylight hours.
I’ve only had winter babies, so I can’t speak for other seasons, but this made total sense. We don’t have a naturally bright house and sunlight is so scarce in the winter anyway. Plus, with both boys born in the middle of cold/flu season and weather that makes walking while balancing a baby carrier a real nail biter, we didn’t leave the house a ton with either one for the first few weeks. So basically how would they know it was day vs. night? There was really very little variation at all to get their circadian rhythms on a normal track.
Both boys had this day/night confusion thing going on, but with the younger one I was able to jump in with this trick right away. Now it didn’t work overnight, but it absolutely did help start turning things around. I promise you it gets better! You will get there and this too will pass and become a distant memory. A great way to get some outside time is to get some exercise outside with your kids. Here’s all my gear and tips for stroller exercise and bike riding with little ones.
Any other tricks for turning the day/night confusion around? Tell me in the comments!