Babies are pretty great. They're small and cute and don't talk back like grotty teenagers. However, they often really suck at sleeping. This is quite ironic considering all the pictures we see of peacefully sleeping babies in magazines. No one told my babies they were meant to sleep. My babies liked to scream and cry and complain very loudly at 2am. And 4am. And midnight.
There is a reason sleep deprivation was used as a form of torture. It messes with your brain and your capacity to think, it affects your weight and your ability to control your own body. It is linked to depression, increased blood pressure and diabetes.
There is a solution though, and they can be there at 2am if you need them. I doubt many Grandma's would offer this service.
Caroline's Angels, otherwise known as Caroline McMahon and Caroline Radford, have been helping sleep deprived parents for many years. Not only do they offer an in-home service to assist you and your baby on a one-to-one basis, they also provide a range of webinars and seminars across Perth, all with one goal in mind: to get your baby – and you – sleeping like… well, like a baby.
The Carolines, both mothers, have a background in nursing and midwifery and are realistic, positive, non-judgemental and very good at what they do.
Home visits, starting at $470 include 3 hours of personalised home support with a sleep specialist plus a month of telephone and email support. The Angels also offer overnight respite, newborn support and behavioural assistance for babies and toddlers. It seems pricey, but what value do you put on a decent night's sleep? Multiply that by the next year or two.
Another option is the three month 'Angel Wings' membership for $59 which provides three months access to the enormous range of online articles, and can be a great gift for a new mum.
Individual articles starting at $3 are also available for immediate download and cover such issues as how to give up the dummy, sleep solutions for babies of different ages, transitioning to a 'big' bed, nightmares and the importance of self-settling.
The website even provides some
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For a $35 fee, you can access one of the popular 'webinars' on various topics such as Sleep Secrets for Babies and Toddler Tantrums and Behaviour. If you cannot attend the workshops (see the website for the next date) you can also purchase a 'live' recording.
It is a significant investment, and there is no overnight solution. You can still expect a few tears and sleepless nights as you and your baby work through the individual program designed for you. But I'm no longer running up and down the stairs six, seven or eight times a night. And my baby, well, she's finally sleeping like a baby.