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Mothering › Groups › February 2013 Due Date Club › Discussions › What is this thing they call a 'nap?'

What is this thing they call a 'nap?'

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

I'm actually fine with the way things are, but just wondering if a child's natural nap patterns can be molded, or if it's worth bothering with (since I'm fine now), or... what?  Since I WAH, longer naps would definitely be better, but...  I guess I've been just watching for when she gets cranky and rubs her eyes, and helping her fall asleep?  It does sometimes take up to 15 minutes for her to fall asleep...


At this point, Miss L sleeps "through the night."  Not really, but we cosleep and side-lie nurse, so it's like... 12 hours with maybe 2 real dream-feeds and some very short bits of comfort sucking, and maybe we get up for potty if she's really restless halfway through the night.  So it's not bad at all.  I'd say I sleep better now than at the end of pregnancy.


Her naps are like... basically 4 naps per day at random times, but more or less after 2 hours of waking or so.  They last maybe 20-40 minutes, and the 20-minute naps are killer, LOL...  I mean, you check your email real quick, get up, pee, grab a snack and she's waking up.  Maybe once a week, one of those naps will be 1-1.5 hours or so. 


But I have been lurking the LWAB and toddler fora and keep seeing these threads like, "When did your babe drop the first/second nap?" or whatever, and realized...  Is it so, that "most" small babies take ~2 naps per day of 1.5-2.5 hours each?  Because it's not like MDC members to overly schedule their babies, I am assuming this is... natural? 


Could it be something I'm eating (I do drink some caffeine in the morning, but not much), or...?  Should I "do" anything about it, or would longer naps (if even achievable!) likely lead to less sleep at night, or....?




How do your LOs nap?

post #2 of 8

depends on babe for sure.  All kids have napped mostly in arms or while being worn.  my kids also get into a better pattern at 9ish months with having a morning and afternoon nap.  DS takes about 3-4 naps still but maybe 40 mnutes each.  


I think you could do nap training same as sleep training.... i guess.  It has never been a big issue for me, so i have not and just follow my babies lead.

post #3 of 8
I'd say if you're fine and baby is happy, don't mess.

Things are going to change anyway as baby gets older, like maybe 2 of those short naps getting compressed into a long one or something like that.

Freya naps for about 2 hrs in the morning (in a wrap, on my back) most days, and then at least 2 more naps later in the day. I've always felt like she, more than my other kids, sleeps a LOT. And we also do just fine at night, side-lie nurse a couple times and I never have to get out of bed with her.

If I try to set her down, though, after she's asleep or if she's naps in my arms after nursing then her naps are much shorter and she'll be fussy. So in that case it's clear to me that she needs more sleep and she needs my help (wearing her) to do so. But if yours is doing well on the (often frustrating) short naps, no worries.

I drink one cup of coffee in the mornings, too. Mmmmmm coffee.
post #4 of 8
About three naps per day here. The first two are shorter like 20 min and the third one is often longer. Like sometimes up to 3 hours but it's not a steady thing. Sometimes he'll stay down a lot longer if I lie down too and if he wakes after a while and nuses sometimes will go right back down.

Your nights sound like ours. smile.gif
post #5 of 8

DD's schedule sounds exactly like your little one... right down to the occasional 20 minute naps (which is the worst). Consider yourself lucky that it only takes 15 minutes to get her to fall asleep though, sometimes it takes my LO as much as 45 minutes of nursing and compromising (and sometimes begging, on my part). We just got over a couple of weeks where she wasn't sleeping at night very well for the first time, so I'm definitely not willing to mess with anything sleep-wise that is essentially working, and I wouldn't recommend it either. Those couple of weeks with no more than 1.5 consecutive hours of sleep were extremely trying and made me feel a bit like I was losing my mind toward the end. I don't know how you mamas with sleepless babies do it.


I also drink a coffee every morning, which I consider to be critical to my mental health.

post #6 of 8
Thread Starter 

So, basically, it's all normal.  lol.gif


Miss L only ever falls asleep on us ("dancing" around or occasionally nursing), which drives one of my grandmothers crazy.  She is very loving and supports our AP stuff in theory, and I think regrets doing what the doctor told her in the 40s/50s (CIO, etc.), BUT she can't quite get it out of her head that maybe we should have baby in a crib (sidecarred is not good enough, I guess) and "put her down" somewhere to take a nap (when we're visiting her, DH often just lets her fall asleep on him and STAY on him-- and it's more than that-- when baby starts to rub her eyes and get a little fussy, it's like she expects us to put her in the other room to fall asleep on her own?) 


If Miss L is napping while DH is with her, he will more often let her sleep on him (while he's sitting, but partially reclined), and he'll just be on his iPhone or whatever.  I can never get comfortable with her sleeping on me unless it's in the Mei Tai or on the My Brest Friend, so I will generally put her down, but observation has not particularly taught me that she sleeps longer on us...  Maybe it's more likely to lead to a longer nap, but definitely not a guarantee.  And unless she's in the Mei Tai (on my back now), I can't get anything done with her on me, so it's kind of a Catch-22 anyway....  Though I have noticed that if I see her stirring slightly (if it's only slightly!) and I put a boob in her mouth (she often naps directly on a blanket on the floor), she will go back to sleep.  Hmmmmmm...


I'm thinking it sounds like she might just take a while to consolidate naps naturally...  I guess that's fine with me.


Just interesting, as it seems really, really common for babies to "naturally" have a "morning" and an "afternoon" nap of significant length.

post #7 of 8

my baby is just starting to show signs of transitioning from what yours is doing (4ish short naps) to morning and afternoon - my last 2 babies had really clear patterns early on - 4 naps, 3 naps, 2 naps etc. the naps would get shorter, then they would drop one and have longer naps for a while..  i had one baby who was down to one long mid day nap by 6  months!  all my babies have also stopped napping completely just before 2, which is suppose to be insane, but they go to bed really early ..  so that is just what they do.. my current baby staysup til 10 and sleeps in til 9-10am.. 


anyway,like everyone else pretty much said, its fine either way :)

post #8 of 8
Ha! Oh good, so the crazy nonscheduled sleep schedule isn't just us! I've mentioned on other threads that Margot has been going through some tough sleep challenges for the past five weeks- waking every twenty minutes at night. She's never really been a great sleeper, but that? Was hell.

She was at four naps a day, sometimes five (late afternoon cat nap) until a few weeks ago when I made a bit more of an effort to find a daytime sleep rhythm (I just let her sleep whenever she wanted before, which I don't believe is a bad thing- but the nighttime sleep stuff was seriously messing with my head and I determined that for my sanity I MUST try to gain a bit of control of the situation.) It kind of backfired and didn't work for us- I ended up getting way too obsessed with the clock. So we reverted to letting baby decide when to sleep, and I generally try to help her sleep if it's been more than three hours of awake time.

Now Margot naturally takes 2-3 naps on most days. Her morning nap(s) tends to be longest, maybe 1.5-2 hours, and sometimes I can put her in her swing for it. Depending on how long her morning nap was, she'll have one or two other naps that are usually no longer than an hour long. Total napping time is 3 hours on the average. I hold her for almost all of her naps because so far she doesn't like to sleep in her carrier. I'm eager to try a woven wrap to see if I can actually get stuff done during those three hours of nap time! Haha.
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