There I was, it is 2 am and I paced with a 3 day old baby around my living room, through my kitchen, and into the dining room with a screaming baby.
- “I just fed you – why are you still crying?”
- “Why did we do this, life was so good and consistent”
- “What do you need sweet baby, please calm down, I want to help you.”
- “Why does my husband not seem to hear this right now?”
Phew, that was only day 3, I had no idea what was ahead of me. Becoming a new parent was so much harder than I had imagined. I was sleep-deprived, had milk shooting out of everywhere, the ice diapers were on their way out and I just needed stability, I was type-A, and structure with a new baby did not exist.
At the time, I didn’t know what a Sleep Consultant was, whether there was one near me, or how they could even help. So I suffered in silence for weeks. Crying, trying, nursing, cleaning, pumping, cooking, playing, rocking, wearing, walking, bouncing to sleep, you name it, I was trying to do it all to get my baby to sleep. At 8 weeks, on the way to the shore with my husband, and I hit a breaking point. I told my husband I wasn’t good at this, I felt like I was failing as a mother and didn’t know what to do.
“Get a whiteboard” – he said. (A whiteboard…..you can’t be serious you perfectly rested, exercising, nothing has changed for you since our son came home husband….) While I didn’t say that, I thought it and in my passive-aggressive nature, I ordered the best whiteboard on the market and it was at the house in 2 days. His idea to get the whiteboard, write down what I needed help/support with and how we worked TOGETHER on this journey was pivotal.
We had a plan , we supported each other, we found a groove and I felt empowered to take back control and find sleep.
I became obsessed with sleep because I saw the havoc that happened without it. I research, studied, read, planned, and mastered sleep for my 8 weeks old. I structured the day, got great naps, had a plan for a bedtime routine, and balanced intake with good sleep hygiene. I fed my son every 3 hours, I walked for naps to ensure they happened at the right times, to set him up for sleep balance in the day and overnight. I would pump after he went to bed at 7:00 pm, my husband then at 10:00 pm would wake and feed him, I would sleep from 8:00 pm – 2:00 am, when he would wake to eat and I would nurse him then, again around 5:00 am and he would wake between 6:00 am and 7:00 am for the day. We had a plan, and it was working.
We were happy humans.
It was then I decided I wanted to support and coach parents because I felt alone and completely unprepared. I didn’t want any parent to feel the way I did. I trained as a Certified Sleep Sense Pediatric Sleep Consultant and Sleep Coach, became a Certified Lactation Counselor and a postpartum doula, and Tiny Transitions Sleep Consulting was born. Fast forward over 6 years later and I now have a team of Sleep Consultants and Coaches that I train to support new parents on their journey to sleep. I support clients every day in their quest for balance, because you can have a plan. Sleep is the foundation for which the house is built. I needed my baby to sleep through the night. I needed my baby to nap on a schedule. I needed predictability, especially when I went back to corporate America. I did it and I want you to know you can too.
New parenting can be hard. Don’t suffer in silence, seek help and sleep support. You can teach healthy sleep habits without the need to every cry-it -out. Sleep Training methods are all over Google. They won’t work. Sleep is a jigsaw puzzle. You need a balance in the daytime naps, the skill of independent sleep, the monitoring of the awake windows and balance in your day.
If you are ready to change sleep in your home, let’s connect. I am here, I get it, I will meet you where you are and we will design a plan that works for your family, your parenting style, and your approach.
Courtney Zentz is the nation’s leading Baby Sleep Expert and Founder of Tiny Transitions. Her background as a Pediatric Sleep Specialist, Lactation Counselor, Postpartum Doula, and Sleep Coach to her team of Sleep Consultants around the world provides parents with a solution to their sleep struggles, that is backed by science and balanced with your love and support. If you are struggling with sleep in your home remember, we offer Free Sleep Before & After calls, so you can learn what a Sleep Coach does and how working with us can help you, if that’s the right choice for your family.
The mission at Tiny Transitions is to teach healthy sleep hygiene and parenting education to parents and their babies, toddlers, and young adults who struggle to sleep well. Courtney resides just outside Philadelphia, with her husband Adam and two children, Max and Sovella. She has always felt passionate about making sleep & healthy living a priority in her family’s life and Tiny Transitions looks forward to working with you.
Her team of Certified Sleep Consultants, the Slumber Squad, offers in-home and virtual consultations, depending on the location. Today, we cover Dallas, TX, Austin, TX, Nashville, TN, Paducah, KY, Long Island, NY, New Jersey, Philadelphia, PA, Tampa, FL, Des Moines, IA, Huntsville, AL, St. Louis, MO, but can travel in the home to support your sleep needs for a fee, based on the work and duration of the stay.