We all knew that when we hopped aboard this ‘parenting train’ we weren’t going to get much sleep. We would hear horror stories from our parents and our friends that had babies telling us, “you better kiss sleeping in on the weekends, or ever, goodbye!”. We all laughed and smiled thinking, oh, they’re just joking, it won’t be so bad, its because their kids don’t sleep, but mine will.
And we were all so very wrong. It isn’t until you we’re a week and a half in with a newborn, with what feel like endless bags under your eyes, 5 pillows on your head trying to drown out the noise, with the nearest hotel on speed-dial that you truly realized what it means to be a parent. You see, for new parents out there who have only just gotten a taste for the sleepless nights, let me be the first to tell you, no, it does not get better (I wish I could insert a, ‘just kidding’ right here, but I can’t. But a crying emoji, maybe…), and getting sleep especially when you’re a hardworking parent is incredibly important. My husband suffered from a deep depression for several months with our first newborn because of the stress of working a full-time job at work, and coming home as a parent doing the same thing without a break, and I don’t want to see anybody else get to that breaking point. So how do you survive through it, you ask? Coffee. Lots, and lots of coffee…
But in all seriousness, there has to be some way that us parents can get sleep again, isn’t there? At least just a little bit? …Please? Don’t panic, there actually is! My husband and I were just discussing this today as we’ve had ‘one of those sleepless weeks’ with our toddler. I’ve also discussed this topic with the expert of all experts, aka grandma, and she has offered some very insightful information about how to do this as well. Not only from grandma, or my own experience, or that of my mommy friends, but also other mommy bloggers online that talk about endlessly about not having any sleep. For more of what I mean, I can’t recommend enough, this blog, My Little Irish Rose by Paige and in-specifically how she mentioned struggling with lack of sleep and being unprepared as to what she really needed with her first born in her baby wish list article.
So without further ado, let’s kiss the bags under our eyes goodbye, and let’s get back together with our dearly departed sleep, and never breakup!
3 Best Ways to Get More Sleep As a Parent
1 ♥ Sleepy Tea (For Your Baby And You)
Sleepy tea is one of my absolute favorite things to take when I can’t get to sleep because it is totally natural, safe, and very soothing. I have gotten in the habit of making my tea 15 to 30 minutes before I plan to lay down, or when I notice my baby start to get sleepy so that we can both fall asleep at the same time to ensure a restful night (or a restful few hours, at least). Believe it or not, they also make these kind of teas for infants and babies to take as well. Trust me, I know the mom radar is going off after reading that line, asking, “is it safe?”. Actually (thank the heavens), yes it is! It is 100% natural tea that literally just helps your body to relax quicker with no harsh chemicals or medicine added! Brands such as, Celestial Seasonings, or, Traditional Medicinals Organic Nighty Night Tea are some of my favorites to take, and will literally cost you under $10!
My mother used to use them for me when I was a kid and she said it would always do the trick! So if you and your baby both need to get some sleep, whip up a batch of this magical tea and you will be snoozing away in no time. My little beans love having a cup every night now because of the delicious flavor and because it gives them a warm feeling in there tummy! And on top of that, it is also very healthy for them (bazinga!). Oh, hello a restful nights sleep, I’ve been waiting for you.
For more ways to get ‘me time’ as a mom, check out this post, amoungst others on how to live a less stressful and happy life as a mom on stresslessbehealthy.com!
2 ♥ Beautifully Scented Pillow Spray
If you’re like me, you probably read that like, “okay, what?”. Trust me, it’s not as crazy as it sounds! There are such things as natural essential oils sprays that you can spray in a room or on your pillow to help naturally relax you into a sleep state (I feeling those Harry Potter vibes while describing this). A huge piece of advice I would offer to all new parents is to go to sleep when your baby does. It’s tempting to stay awake and do your own thing after putting your baby to bed, but in reality, you don’t know when you’ll get another chance to sleep if you do it that way, and it’s very likely you’ll be falling asleep right when the baby wakes up if you just go to bed whenever you want (cause that’s how it always works). Which is why I would highly recommend you use a spray to fall asleep as quick as possible after putting the baby down.
I love to use, Thisworks Deep Sleep Pillow Spray, because not only has it been a clinically proven effective sleep aid, but it helps me personally to fall asleep within only a few minutes with it’s incredibly powerful, sweet smelling scent (although, I do want to eat it sometimes with how good it smells!).
But, if you aren’t a fan of a sleep spray or tea, don’t worry! These aren’t the only products and methods you can use to help yourself get to sleep! There’s actually a fantastic blog called, DearMomWorking and in-particular her Sleep Transitions blog post that also has incredible tips and tricks including the regular baby products such as sleep monitors to help you get a full nights sleep (or, as close to a full nights sleep you can get with babies!).
3 ♥ Ear Plugs & Snooze Away!
Ear plugs, who knew, right? I’ve never understood why parents don’t do them more often, as they are literally your new BFF! During the day, I try to find a period when the kids are being watched by someone else (aka. Grandma or hubby) so that I can throw earplugs in, take a quick nap, and just rest of a bit. And don’t feel so bad asking for grandma or your hubby to take charge for 1 hour for a little shut-eye. I hear a lot around town about parents thinking they are lazy for wanting a little shut-eye during the day. Really? Are we really meant to try and survive on zero sleep? If possible, take up the opportunity as it’s not something you or other people should judge as being selfish. If you just get 1 hour of sleep, it will do wonders for yourself, your family and your relationship with your hubby. Nor should you just it as being a lazy parent. This is something that is being more popularized lately, for a proper viewpoint on it, check out Emily’s blog post on Lazy Parenting via her site, Emilyedlynnphd.
During the day is a perfect time do so, especially if you can’t get any sleep at night, as this will at least ensure you do rest at some point in the day. But because I’m not the only parent in this household, and my husband does just as much (well… that’s negotiable), we have actually developed a shift for who’s on baby watch at what times and what days, and we cycle back and forth so we each get a chance to recharge.
Ear plugs are an excellent way to ensure you still get your sleep while you have a baby, and you might as well get all the rest you can now because you don’t know when you’ll get it again (sobs). And the only way to do that is with ear plugs, otherwise the sounds around you will be like nails on a chalkboard! My favorite to use that seem legitimately sound proof are Mack’s Ear Plugs, as they truly block out all the noise around you like no other, and they’ll only cost you $3. Who knew getting sleep was actually this easy, right?
Overall, there are many pieces of advice I could offer to new parents who are looking to get a better nights sleep, but if you want a true effective method on how to go about it, I would strongly suggest that you try out these products and methods listed above. Just remember, while not getting sleep definitely isn’t easy to cope with, it is what being a parent is all about, and no matter what it may seem, it won’t last forever. Look forward to the future when you can sleep soundly again, but cherish the sleepless nights you have now while you can, because one day, they will just be a memory (…who am I kidding, this is exhausting! Where’s the coffee?).