"H is for hell" cosleeping position
Before sleep coaching: the dreaded “H” position.

When my daughter was born, I was completely overwhelmed by all of the handbooks and manuals and manifestos about babies. How to get them on a schedule, how to get them to sleep, how to teach them to self-soothe… and everyone seemed to have a different method for doing it. Many of my friends were successful with one method or another and then swore by it (until they had a second child, of course). Because let’s be real: every child is different, every mom is different, and we’re all just trying to figure it out as we go. I tossed the manuals as soon as I realized Zadie had raging colic due to a milk protein sensitivity. The only solution at that point was to keep her as close to us as possible because she awoke with discomfort CONSTANTLY. It wasn’t long before we were co-sleeping.

What happens when Daddy handles bedtime
What happens when Daddy handles bedtime.

Co-sleeping was wonderful. It soothed Zadie, let me rest, kept her close at hand. It was glorious until she was about 18 months old and the sweet comfort of her being close by was replaced with her feet jabbing my back or wrapping herself around my neck like a scarf. I decided that when her hair was long enough to suffocate me, we needed to change things.

“Cry it out” was not an option. Not only because Zadie is, uhh, strong-willed, but also because I’m a professor and I teach evening classes. That means a couple of nights per week, it would be my husband who was putting Zadie to bed. And if bedtime involved any crying, he wouldn’t do it. I came home to Zadie awake at 11 p.m. more than once. If we were going to do anything consistently, it needed to be easy on everyone. But I had no idea where to start.

After a little research, I found out about sleep coaching. You guys, I’m out of shape and I’ve never hired a personal trainer. Our taxes are getting complicated but I’ve never hired an accountant. Why pay someone to do what you can do yourself? I mean, really. How bourgeois is a sleep coach anyway?

After sleep coaching!
After sleep coaching!

HUSH. If you aren’t sleeping, you know it’s something you’d trade a limb for. $250 started to look like a steal. And it was! So yes, I hired a sleep coach. And I’m telling you about it because it was SO WORTH IT.

Shana del Castillo is a miracle worker. She helped us transition Zadie from co-sleeping in our bed to sleeping (1) in her own room (GLORY!), (2) by herself (HALLELUJAH!), (3) with NO crying (PREACH!!), (4) within TWO weeks (SWEET BABY JESUS!!!). If that was too much punctuation for you, here’s a translation: two weeks to sweet, glorious, easy sleep using a system that anyone can manage.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Order The Sleep Lady’s Good Night Sleep Tight book. I got mine on Amazon.

  2. Head over to Shana del Castillo’s website and Book a Free Mini Consult.

  3. She’ll give you some tips and explain how the process works.

  4. Fill out the emailed forms she sends you (Be prepared to share the dark and gory secrets of all the parenting fails you initiate at bedtime.)

  5. Schedule coaching (which, by the way, is via phone!) and watch as Shana transforms your family.

I’m going to say this part again, because I think it bears repeating: I wouldn’t tell you about this if it wasn’t actually worth it when we went through the system two years ago. I wouldn’t tell you to spend the money if I hadn’t spent it myself.

Of course we make exceptions... a rare double-nap!
Of course we make exceptions… a rare double-nap!

Zadie is still a challenge for us. We moved to a new house where she’s upstairs all by herself and we’ve had to make some adjustments to our own sleeping arrangements to help her rest peacefully. The very best thing about Shana’s method is that it truly is gentle and focused on helping your child and not scolding them to sleep, and that’s the biggest impact it has made on our nighttime routine. The skills you pick up are transferable, too. We’ve done a much better job with our second child (we just successfully transitioned Wesley out of co-sleeping at 7 months using The Sleep Lady method!).

If you’re losing sleep, if your child isn’t resting well, or if bedtime isn’t a smooth transition in your home, hire a sleep coach. And don’t think it’s just for babies: the method works for kids of all ages. Shana del Castillo helped us rest peacefully!

Editor’s Note: This is a sponsored post for which we were compensated, however the opinions and experience with Shana are 100% our own!



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