“About 3 weeks ago, I wiped my tears of frustration and fatigue long enough to search the internet for a sleep consultant. Our girl is 10 months old. We attempted sleep training on our own by purchasing “The Sleep Sense Program,” when she was 6 months old. It was semi-successful because it got her out of our bed (we co-slept for 6 months) and it helped us establish an early bedtime and routine but after 4 months of travel, family visits, colds, teething, and many other transitions, we needed help. Our daughter would only be nursed or rocked to sleep. This worked for a while but gradually it no longer worked. I’d nurse her and as soon as I put her in her crib, she’d cry and would not go back to sleep until she was in my arms again. My husband would rock her to sleep and that worked for a while but eventually the night-wakings increased, the daytime naps diminished and we were left with a tired, cranky girl and tired parents. I used to feel so anxious before I went to bed at night because I never knew what to expect. My husband and I would joke that it was best to just stay up all night because our girl would certainly be up every hour or two. Even worse, we were running out of ways to get her to go back to sleep…other than me nursing her all night. As new parents, everyone told us that we just wouldn’t get sleep so just accept it or that she would eventually outgrow it. I was not convinced. I told myself before I just accept a chronically tired family and all the frustration that comes along with it, I was going to try one more thing- a sleep consultant. I had no idea how much it would cost us or what was involved but it didn’t matter to me. I knew there had to be a better way to live and enjoy our precious girl. I found Ronee Welch from a random Google search. I selected her because she was affiliated with the Sleep Sense Program, which we were familiar with and she lived in our state (although that is not required because worked with her remotely via phone, e-mail, and texts.) She called me back the same day. During our first conversation, I felt better simply because she heard me. She understood what was happening and was confident that we could work together to fix it. I was sold.
That week, we completed the preliminary paper work and started the program the following Friday. We wanted to start right away. Some may wonder why we would pay someone when we could follow the book ourselves. To us, Ronee’s guidance has had many benefits. First, she held us accountable. Our baby was not the only one who needed to be trained..we did too. We had to be consistent and stick to the plan. Having regular phone calls with Ronee (and she always called on time) made us accountable and consistent. Another advantage of having Ronee was that it put us (my husband and I) on the same page because we heard the information together. When we did sleep training the first time, I read the book and he took instructions from me, which was ineffective over time because it was based on my interpretation and his implementation. Ronee also gave us instructions when a situation didn’t fit the script. The book is great under the perfect circumstances but we were lost when something happened that the book didn’t address. Ronee was able to troubleshoot any situation even via text or e-mail. During the 10 day program, I would text her and tell her what happened and she’d give me advice, on the spot. This was very valuable. In just 2 weeks, we are all happier and healthier. The night wakings went away after 3 nights in the program. Our girl sleeps for 12-13 hours at night and has 2 naps per day. She wakes up smiling and playing. I was worried about her crying and she no longer cries at night. When I walk up to the crib at night, she literally leans her body towards it to get in…I still deem it a miracle. I’ve taken so many pictures of her sleep because I am so amazed.
As for the parents, we have started dating again (yay). Since she’s in bed by 7pm, we’ve been able to hire a sitter for a few hours while we have an outing. I’ve resumed daily exercise and yoga which I love but did not seem appealing when I was extremely tired. I could barely drive because I was tired. My husband has more energy at work and has no more need for Red Bulls. He travels and drives a lot so sleep is a necessity, not a luxury. Last but not least, working with Ronee has made us more confident parents. The day care that our girl attended was not supportive of her sleep and we had the confidence to remove her from there and bring her back home. We have also made tough decisions around family events to preserve her rest and to us it is worth it. Our family’s health and happiness is immeasurable. THANK YOU RONEE for changing our lives!”