We’ve covered Leap 4, Leap 5 and Leap 6 in detail, so the next stop of course is the wonderful world of Leap 7. Wonder Weeks Leap 7 hits when your baby is around 46 weeks old (or about 10 a half months old) and is the final leap in your baby’s first year of life.
Tearing your hair out with your baby’s sudden clinginess and sudden problems sleeping. Fear not! Read more about our experience with Leap 7 and discover some helpful tips to help you navigate the brand new World of Sequences!
What are leaps?
For those of you new to the term ‘leap‘ (although seriously, where have you been?!), it is a phrase coined by Wonder Weeks, all about developmental stages your baby/toddler goes through during the first 19 months of their lives.
The Wonder Weeks started off as a book, however I first discovered them as an app when Dex was only a few months old.
Revered by Mums all over the globe, Wonder Weeks finally give us an insight into our baby’s fussy periods and helps to understand how we can better help them to learn, develop and begin to understand the world around them.
Wondering why your baby or toddler suddenly seems fussy or doesn’t want to sleep after weeks of being content? Then consult The Wonder Weeks app by inputting your baby’s due date and you’ll have all the information to hand at the touch of a button.
Some people think mental leaps are a load of woo, but I disagree. The app has been spot on for both my boys and has given me incredible peace of mind when I’ve thought I was parenting wrong, only to discover they are ‘leaping’ and after a few days/weeks, everything is back to normal…for now.
Leap 7 – What can you expect?
Leap 7 follows Leap 6 and starts around 10 months after your baby’s due date so for us Felix hit this developmental stage at the beginning of September 2019.
According to the Wonder Week’s website:
Instead of working to destruct and disassemble everything around him, you may now start to see your baby putting things together! But mostly, you will probably experience a lot of fussy behaviour and yet another annoying sleep regression to boot!
Leap 7 sleep regression
As if the 4 month sleep regression wasn’t bad enough, another sleep regression hits around 8-10 months.
From the start of September, all the way through October and onto November, Felix struggled with his sleep after suffering with a vomiting bug and then being thrown straight into Leap 7. If that wasn’t bad enough, he then developed hand foot and mouth!
For both my boys, this sleep regression meant a return to waking up in the middle of the night demanding milk. Dexter who had slept through the night from a very early age starting demanding milk at 3 or 4am in the morning.
I cannot begin to describe how frustrating this is after feeling you’ve finally got your baby into a good routine and they’re sleeping through the night.
I worried about ‘giving in‘ to their demands for milk, panicking that it would turn into a habit – but what else can you do when you’re following a baby led approach?
How long does Leap 7 last?
Leap 7 last approximately 4 – 6 weeks – which can feel like a lifetime, I know!
The end of Leap 7 was a welcome relief after a solid month a half of poor sleep, whining, screeching and general clinginess that left me feeling half dead.
Surviving Leap 7
You can and you will survive Leap 7, although it can feel like hell at the time!
Try to remember all of the positive things that come out of each developmental leap every time you feel stressed and if you need a break, find a trusted family member or friend to take the reins.
After the end of this leap, your baby will start doing so many incredible things. We found that Dexter and Felix started:
- Clapping hands (although for Dex he didn’t start doing this until his first birthday)
- Pulling up to stand (and falling over a lot!)
- Pointing at things
- Nodding their heads to communicate (so cute!)
- Trying to put their shoes on
How did we cope with the Leap 7 / 10 month sleep regression?
As with all the sleep regressions we’ve encountered over the years (yeah, there comes another one at around 18 months – yay!), we coped by remaining positive and trying to stay as patient as possible.
With Dexter, I avoided going straight to offering milk and tried to avoid rocking him back to sleep as the advice I read at the time was to try and do anything to avoid creating bad habits.
With Felix, I took the approach a little differently and offered him milk when he woke as he’d been so poorly during his vomiting bug, that I didn’t want him to continue losing weight during this growth spurt.
I needn’t have worried about creating ‘bad habits’ because finally things do settle back down to normal. For both boys it was around four weeks. Four LONG weeks, don’t get me wrong, but honestly things do and will get better.
As well as struggling with night time wake ups, we also saw a difference with them both settling down for naps – which can be super annoying and stressful when you really need that time to catch up on your lost sleep from the night before.
Some things that helped included:
- Investing in black out blinds for the day time sleep
- Co-sleeping after the night time wake up to try and get as much sleep as possible (this won’t last forever!)
- Dressing baby in a sleep sack for all sleeps to discourage them from using their new found standing up and holding onto the cot skills!
Patience is key when developing a strategy to surviving the Leap 7. It’s so easy to get frustrated, but your baby cannot help these fussy periods and it’s so important to try to remember that in the grand scheme of things, these fussy periods are a very short fraction of your child’s life.
The lack of sleep definitely doesn’t help though!
What comes after Leap 7?
Funnily enough, after Leap 7 comes…you guessed it…Leap 8! Leap 8 comes just after your baby’s first birthday and marks the beginning of your baby’s toddlerhood.
Good luck with your experience of Wonder Weeks Leap 7 and let us know any hints or tips you have in surviving leap 7 in the comments below!