Sleep is crucial and important. It helps to regulate your hormones, rejuvenates and replenishes milk supply and can be the refresh and reset you need. The first few weeks postpartum can be a challenge but as you approach weeks 3-4 postpartum, you might see glimmers that can start to take the shape of a sleep scenario.
Here are some ideas that can bring more sanity to your sleep.
Sleep Scenario 1 | ACCUMULATE YOUR HOURS OF SLEEP
This means, accumulate the total number of hours you require to have optimal sleep and function at a decent level. Typically, 6-10 hrs of sleep is required to feel your best and function optimally. If you can manage well on 8 hrs, then 8hr is your magic sleep number.
Stay in bed until you achieve these sleep hours. This means, only coming out of your bed to eat and use the washroom – nothing more. You will retreat back to bed and sleep or at the bare minimum be in a relaxed state. If this takes you until noon or 2pm to get all your hours in, then so be it.
* This sleep scenario works best in early stages of infancy when babies also sleep a lot.
Sleep Scenario 2 | EARLY TO BED, EARLY TO RISE.
This scenario works best after baby has figured out days from nights and feeding routines are well on their way and established.
One partner goes to sleep early while the other takes the “later shift” and feeds baby their last feed before putting them down for the night. The early-to-bed person will wake early and allow the late-to-bed person the extra few hours of sleep in the morning. This teamwork scenario requires everyone to do their part.
* This sleep scenario works best from about 6-7 weeks on.
Sleep Scenario 3 | SLEEP SEPARATELY
Know that it’s only for the time being if this is of initial concern. One person can be completely rested and able to tend to the household duties while the birthing person can tend to baby’s needs; eating, sleeping, diaper changes. It’s not forever, but can allow for the birthing person to be tended to properly.
With this scenario the fully rested person will make food, tend to all household duties (pet duties, garbage change, grocery runs, food prep/make, laundry etc.) so that the birth person can focus on healing and nurturing baby.
* This sleep scenario works best at any point, from early stages to childhood.