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The Right Sleep Strategy for Your Baby

During your pregnancy, you:
A) read every babycare bible in sight and came up with a parenting plan that would keep your baby feeling secure and you in control
B) read every babycare bible in sight, felt confused, and went back to reading People magazine
C) knew instinctively that caring for your baby was going to be as simple as just loving him and being there for him as much as possible
D) felt a little nervous at the thought of caring for your baby and called your mother/big sister/ best girlfriends often to get their advice on what to expect
E) figured you would pretty much handle it as best you could -- after all, most infants do survive in spite of their parents' inexperience

The best way to describe your baby's personality is:
A) Happy-go-lucky and easygoing
B) Happy as long as she's got her Binky, blankie, or you nearby
C) Kind of high-maintenance; she may have been colicky or demanding early on, and now you're never sure if she's going to wake up smiling or scowling
D) A bit on the shy side; likes to warm up to new situations
E) A real firecracker: busy, fearless, and defiant

Since your baby was born, you've collected contact information for the following resources:
A) A gourmet take-out restaurant that delivers, a cleaning service, and a weekly mommy-and-me group
B) None; you don't have time to talk to anyone yet
C) The La Leche League and www.askdrsears.com
D) An acquaintance from college whom you never really liked that much until you heard she had twins under her belt, a collection of moms from your church's parenting group, and the woman down the block with three teenagers
E) The American Academy of Pediatrics, Gymboree, and two moms from your childbirth education class with whom you hit it off

Your first instinct about where your baby should sleep was:
A) In his crib in his own lovingly decorated nursery
B) Wherever he seemed to fall asleep easily, including his bouncy seat or stroller or swaddled across your chest in a sling
C) In a co-sleeper next to your bed or right on the mattress with you so you could breastfeed easily at night
D) In a bassinet on wheels so you could keep him nearby as much as possible
E) In a bassinet or crib in your bedroom for now, then moving into his own nursery in the near future when night feedings become less frequent

When you leave your baby with a sitter, how does she react?
A) She barely notices you're gone
B) No idea; even if you found a sitter, you don't have the energy to get dolled up for a night out
C) Why leave her with a sitter? You two have just as much fun with her tagging along
D) Since you only leave her with Grandma, it's never been an issue
E) She cries when you say goodbye but is playing happily when you call the sitter from your cell phone en route to the restaurant

Your baby's daily routine consists of:
A) Four feedings, two naps, then whatever you or your baby's caregiver has on the agenda
B) Routine? What routine? The only place your baby ever naps is in the car
C) Lots of long leisurely nursing sessions and cuddling in the front carrier; both of you really relish life in the slow lane
D)It varies every week or two, and depends on what seems to be working at the moment
E) Four feedings, two naps, a morning run in the jogging stroller, floor time with Baby Einstein in the background, and an afternoon playdate

See page 2 to find your baby's sleep style...

Stephanie Wood is a Babytalk contributing editor and the mother of two boys and a girl.

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