You know life with Mia is rough in the Romano household if the biggest issue I am having right now is whether or not to swaddle her while she sleeps. (I know, I know… I could be tackling much larger issues) I am a huge sleeper, so of course I am requiring that Mia bucks up and becomes a huge sleeper herself. Poor thing, she really has no other choice with me as her mom. I have been debating back and forth over whether or not it is time to give up the sleep swaddle and then how to do it. Apparently everyone else out there in the internet baby questioning world has the same debaucle. At what age do they lose the startle reflex waking themselves up everytime? What happens when they start to roll over while swaddled and don’t have their hands free? Should you stop cold turkey? Should you allow one arm out first and then let them get used to that? Is it a learned thing, or is it developmental? By swaddling them for 11 hours at a time are they obtaining developmental milestones later in life? And of course everyone has a different answer and a different viewpoint. So I was left with the decision, to swaddle or not to swaddle?  I don’t think I would be so torn over the issue, but Mia is an excellent sleeper. She is sleeping a good 11 hours at night (yes 11 hours!)and napping quite well. However, she is starting to resist her swaddle everytime I put her in it and then spends half her nap trying to houdini out of it. If she does get out of it in the middle of the night she cries. So after much teetering on the issue, I have stopped swaddling her cold turkey. That was a huge decision for me. I am not really fond of decisions.  She is actually doing remarkably well. However, she does startle quite a bit waking herself up more often and therefore not napping as long. There is something quite remarkable about the swaddle and sleep for babies. I am so glad that we swaddled her from early on. 

This picture is from about a month ago. We swaddled her for every nap in the miracle blanket. (Thank you Mrs. Donnelly) The miracle blanket really has lived up to its name if you don’t mind the rigamaroll of placing your baby in a tiny straightjacket everytime you put them down to sleep. She really couldn’t break out of this until about 3 months of age. The downside was that if you live somewhere where it is 100 degrees everyday of the summer you hate to put them in it. Most of the time I just swaddled her naked because of course half of the time I worried she was too hot.  

This is the Halo Sleepsack. I thought I would transition her to this one because you can have their arms in or out. The inside zips up and then the arm flaps velcro over. Not a brilliant design to say the least. I was super excited to get this sleepsack in the mail thinking it would solve all my swaddling problems. She would have more freedom for her arms inside the swaddle, it wouldn’t be so hot, etc. I was dissapointed after having her in it for 2 seconds. Of course she broke out of it and kept hitting herself in the face with those flailing arms. Plus babies and velcro don’t mix. Undoing the swaddle completely startles her and wakes her up. I love that she was so tired in this picture and just fell asleep in mid attempt at breaking out of her swaddle. I am sure she is actually praying for me to just give up the swaddle completely.

This is the first time Mia has gotten to wear pajamas with the adorable feet. We have so many pairs that we were given that we never got to wear becasue it was simply too hot to put those on and then swaddle her besides. Don’t let that sly smile fool you. She would never fall asleep like this.

So this is how Mia has transitioned to sleep. She still likes the comfort of something tight around her middle and her feet enclosed.

Mia is beginning to enjoy the freedom of being arms free. Of course we would never imagine going into her bedroom to snap photos for fear of her startling.  

In fact I tiptoe past her room now. The video monitor lets me see her every move. It really has been nice seeing the video monitor because in the midle of the night when she cried I would be able to spy in on her (from the comfort of my bed) and immediately discover the reason for her tears. And of course most of the time it was because she had wriggled one arm out. Tim thinks that by the looks of her arm movements changing in her sleep every 5 minutes she might have a job in air traffic control someday.

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