I just read abigailvr's post and it sounded exactly like my situation -- even down to the age of my DS (7 months). But I wanted to start a new thread so I don't hijack hers and also so that I can get some advice specific to my DS.
For the past week or two he has been sleeping worse and worse. He used to wake up every couple of hours and nurse back to sleep. Now it seems he wakes every hour, nurses and then wakes again when I roll away. I can't see the clock in the dark so I don't really know how often this is going on, but last night I felt like he was lying next to me awake and wiggling (kicking and scratching me) almost the whole night. Around 5:45 he was completely awake and I had to rock him to sleep and then let him sleep on my chest till I had to wake up at 6:30 to go to work. Those 45 minutes were the best sleep I got all night! But moments before the alarm went off he woke up fussing -- I had to leave him with DH while I took a shower and when I came back he was crying for me.
He seems super clingy the last couple of days, especially at night. We put him down for the night around 7:30 or 8 and he'll sleep for about 45 minutes to an hour, then wakes up. Usually the first time we can rock him back to sleep and put him down again. After that he'll fall back to sleep but if we put him down he wakes up immediately crying.
We've been trying suggestions from Pantley off and on for a month. We've been doing the bedtime ritual. For a little while we tried putting him down when he was sleepy but not fully asleep, but that didn't work at all.
I thought I needed to change his nightwaking, cut it down to a few times a night, but now I'm thinking I could live with the nursing every hour if in between he would just lay still and let me sleep.
I read in Dr. Sears that crying, irritability, and nightwaking can be caused by food allergies and I'm starting to wonder about that. He's only had a few solids and they were all on the list of "least likely to cause allergies" (bananas, sweet potatoes, apple, teething biscuit are the things he's had in the last week), but I think we'll stop all solids for a couple of weeks and see if that helps.
Any other suggestions?