Sleep ... or lack thereof

Sleep quickly becomes a highly valued asset, every parent talks about it, well-meaning friends and relatives ask "are they good at night?", google searches are conducted on normal infant sleep and how to get them to sleep at night, countless books are offered and bought...
And I would hazard a guess it's just baby dependent and none of the advice or information offered likely makes any real difference.
Prior to becoming parents we had an optimistic (and unrealistic) view that our baby would happily sleep in a bassinet/cot and would simply wake for a feed and go back to sleep immediately afterwards. Google tells us that babies sleep for 16-20 hours a day so how bad can it really be?! Being health professionals we also vowed that we would never co-sleep (due to safety concerns) and naively believed it would all work out perfectly this way #thankyouverymuch.
Well cue the first 2 weeks at home where our gorgeous Isla (being dutifully placed in a bassinet next to our bed) would sound like a distressed warthog every time we tried to transfer her back to her bassinet at night after falling fast asleep in my arms after a feed. I'd lie there listening to her intermittent crying/snorting noises in the bassinet and wonder what on earth it was she wanted as feed and nappy changes had already been conducted.
During the day she would happily sleep on us, curled into our chest or arms but seemed again to instantaneously wake as soon as we'd attempt the bassinet transfer.
Many attempts followed to try and get her ladyship to enjoy her bassinet. People suggested hot water bottles, white noise apps, various types of swaddling and even spraying breastmilk on a washcloth that goes into the bassinet with her.
Well it made not one ounce of difference for us and after a particularly trying night where I'd somehow fallen asleep whilst breastfeeding sitting up in bed, only to wake and realise nearly 3 hours had passed (how on earth I managed not to drop her on the floor is a mystery to me still) we decided to try co-sleeping.
It was magic.
She would snuggle in and be peaceful, the grunting ceased and there was no more crying. She quickly learned how to rotate her little legs and kick me awake for a feed and then would happily drift back asleep nestled in close to me after this.
I of course was having all sorts of nightmares about rolling on her, I was stressed about the SIDS risk and worried for several days of this before deciding that ultimately this was working best for us and we would just try and do it in the safest way possible - a helpful link for those in the same boat:
At the end of the day I now firmly believe that you need to do what works and what you feel safe and comfortable doing. After co-sleeping since 2 weeks in for the last 8.5 months I have found some of the most magic moments to be at night. I love feeling her little body nestled into mine, having an arm around her and just breathing in her wonderful scent savouring these moments that I will look back on and cherish in years to come.

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