Well, here I am, one more of the countless mamas who really really wants more sleep about now. My 10mo dd has never slept more than 5 hours at a stretch (and those nights are rare and ended at about 6mo), but for the past couple of months she's been waking to nurse every 1.5-2 hours all night long. She usually only nurses for a minute or two and then is out again, but I'm not doing well on the lack of deep sleep. Am having lots of trouble with memory and with fine motor skills, losing patience, and it's affecting my dh work schedule (he works at home and is up with her in the morning so I can sleep for a couple hours, but this means he has to work at night - sometimes quite late - to make up the hours and he isn't getting any down time or sleep time himself). I can't fall asleep while she's nursing and have trouble staying asleep if she's fidgeting. We have a crib side-carred to our bed, but she's rarely in it as she cries and wakes up when I move her back after nursing her, and even if she is in it she wakes up anyway. She won't take a pacifier - just howls and spits it out if I offer it. She has been teething off and on, but I don't think it's that. No huge developmental milestones. I don't think she's overtired. I know it's considered normal for babies to wake up a lot for a couple years, but this current pattern simply isn't sustainable for me and my dh. I've skimmed the Baby Whisperer (I know, I know) and looked up things from No Cry Sleep Solution online (is it a book worth buying?), and we're doing everything Dr. Sears says to reduce nightwaking.
The other issue is that she has learned to only be carried to sleep by my dh for nights and naps. I can't carry her to sleep b/c of a bad back (and she won't fall asleep on me like that anyway). So he spends a third of his day carrying her, which again, eats into his work schedule. If he doesn't carry her, she doesn't nap until she's completely exhausted, and by then only gets one nap and gets overtired. What to do? How to wean her from the carrier? She won't nurse to sleep initially, only if she's been asleep for a while and has awakened.
Any ideas on how to get her to sleep for longer stretches at night and wean her from falling asleep in the carrier? I absolutely agree with many of you that these things can be healthy and normal, but they currently aren't working given my dh's job and my physical needs.
We're thinking of at least having my dh parent her to sleep throughout the night for a couple of nights while I sleep with earplugs in, but I know it will make her sad to wake up with no mama there. It's something Dr Sears suggests. I'd like the sleep, and maybe it would help her learn other ways of being comforted to sleep... what do you all think about it?