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Tracy Spackman | Infant & Toddler Sleep Coach

baby sleep with mom

As a gentle sleep coach and mother of five, I often reflect on the things I wish I had known when my children were babies. Parents frequently ask me if I used my own methods with my kids, and I always laugh and say “no.” Back then, I didn’t know any better than the moms I talk to now. I wish I had a sleep coach when my children were little because I made so many mistakes, yet my kids still turned out great. It could have been so much easier, but those challenges have given me valuable insights that I now share with sleep-deprived parents.


Here are the key things I wish someone had told me—or at least that I had been willing to listen to:

1. Realistic Sleep Expectations: Babies can often sleep long stretches at night after 6 months. The range of normal before that is incredibly broad.  Understanding this would have saved me a lot of frustration and uncertainty.

2. Night Weaning: Night nursing sessions are typically the first feedings to wean when it’s time to reduce feedings, not the last. Not necessarily all at once, but starting to reduce some can make a big difference. I didn’t know that, and my doctor’s advice to expect my baby to sleep all night by 3 months didn’t sit right with me then, and it still doesn’t now.

3. Gentle Sleep Coaching: Gentle, responsive sleep coaching can start after 5 months, but you can wait until both you and your baby are ready. There’s no rush, and it’s okay to take things at your own pace.

4. Importance of Naps: Aim to get the best naps possible while working on night sleep skills. Day sleep is the building block for night sleep, and vice versa. You can focus on night sleep first and then work on naps, or tackle both together.

5. Every Child is Different: Avoid comparing your child to others. Each child is unique, and what works for one might not work for another. Trust your instincts, you are actually doing a great job.


In hindsight, I wish I had done things differently, but those experiences have shaped who I am today and how I help others. If your child’s sleep patterns are challenging, start by noting the longest stretch they’ve ever slept and build from there. With patience and gentle methods, both you and your child can achieve better sleep. Remember, your child is wonderful and unique, and you are doing an amazing job!

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