It’s common knowledge that babies just don’t sleep, right? Well what if I told you it doesn’t always have to be that way?
I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Brooke Hohenadal, a certified sleep consultant and owner of Bedtime Beginnings
I had so many questions for her, but I narrowed it down to 5 main questions to give everybody reading a good idea of what Bedtime Beginnings services can do for sleepless babies (and parents!)
If you read this and still have your own questions Great Expectations will be hosting a live Q&A with Brooke on July 5th at 8:00 pm
if you wish to receive a reminder or notifications you can click ‘going’ to our facebook event. You can also make sure you follow this blog and receive updates as we promote the event!
on to the interview!
1) What is a sleep consultant?
A sleep consultant is a coach, mentor, motivator, teacher, hand-holder or whatever you need us to be in order to follow a plan to improve your child’s sleep! Some people need education and guidance, others need someone to hold them accountable to truly implement the changes necessary to solve their child’s sleep problems- as a Sleep Consultant I am happy to take on whatever role you need in order to achieve your goals.
2) What inspired you to get into this work?
After my husband broke his leg, when our first daughter was only 4 months old, it only took me another month before I realized that I couldn’t do this any longer! The constant night waking’s to “feed” (she was just soothing back to sleep, who are we kidding!) coupled with taking care of two babies (once slightly larger than the other…) took a toll on this new mom! One night, at about 3AM I caved and bought my first sleep book and haven’t looked back. Once I taught our daughter how to sleep through the night it truly changed our lives, and hers; we now have two girls that go to bed easily each night and sleep the proper amount each day, which means that every day when they wake up they are ready to take on that days challenges. I was so inspired by how much it changed our lives that I wanted to help others achieve the same thing, but also to just get out there and let people know that you don’t have to go months and months without sleeping, there is hope, and it’s not as bad as you may think (or read online…)!
3) What is the most common complaint/problem you hear from clients?
Hmm, this is a good one- I have a few common complaints:
- My baby wakes up 2-10 times a night, every hour, every two hours, she just won’t sleep!
- I can only get my child to sleep 30-45 minutes at a time during the day; it is so frustrating, just when I start to do something he wakes up, every time!!!
- Every night when we tuck our toddler into bed we have to lay with him, it used to be really sweet but now it can take over an hour and he just won’t sleep!
- We really wanted to co-sleep with our baby, it’s been wonderful but now our child has taken over our bed and will not sleep in her crib- I really want my husband back in bed with me, it’s really starting to take a toll on our relationship!
- My baby wakes up every morning at 4:30, I give her a quick feed and she goes back to bed but I am really starting to get tired of waking up at that time- she is 18 months old so I know she doesn’t need a feed anymore!
- My child falls asleep in their own bed every night but will have a nightmare and comes to sleep with us each night! I didn’t mind it at first but it’s becoming more and more common, when will he start to sleep through the night in his own bed.
4) What is the most popular package bedtime beginnings offers?
Some families just need a little bit of guidance and reassurance that they are on the right track with their child’s sleep but many of the families I work with benefit from a full 2-week package to ensure their little ones are sleeping properly with as few tears as possible!
What really separates Sleep Consultants from any book, online forum or relatives’ advice is the follow-up support and custom sleep plan. Having a detailed plan laid out, that is specific to your child, when you are already exhausted makes the changes simple and straightforward and takes all of the guesswork out; on top of that I am here for you every day for 2-3 weeks while you implement the plan. If you are worried about something, have a question or something needs to be tweaked I am here to offer education and guidance so the whole process can be as smooth as possible for your child.
Depending on the age of the child I offer custom sleep packages, in each sleep package I offer:
- An Intake questionnaire so I can get all of the details of your families sleep situation.
- A Custom Sleep Plan based on your responses to the questionnaire.
- One hour private consultation to discuss the details of the plan and answer any questions you may have.
- Digital sleep logs so you can track and see the progress your child is making each day.
- Follow-up support in the form of phone calls and e-mails; this is what all of my past families have loved the most, knowing someone is there for you every step of the way! We work together to help your child learn this new skill in the simplest and quickest way because there is someone there to make any necessary changes so that your child learns as quickly as possible. It’s all about providing the proper tools and structure so your child can learn easily.
- Bedtime Beginnings Sleep Kit offers additional information after our time together has ended so that you are prepared for any future events (travel, daylight savings, nap transitions etc.).
5) If you could give just one piece of information/advice to every expecting parent what would it be?
Respect your child’s sleep; it is as important as diet and exercise! Children can only deal with their daily stresses when they are running at full capacity- if your child has constant meltdowns, a hard time focusing, or just always seems to be tired then there is a good chance that they are not getting enough sleep! An early bedtime (7-8 latest) is recommended right up until the pre-teen years- don’t underestimate their desire to sleep, even if they say they aren’t tired. Pick an early bedtime and stick to it, it might take a few nights for the change to take place but once their bodies realize they can go to sleep at that time they will start getting the proper amount of sleep and it will change their life for the better!
Kate, your lovely local doula