Signs a Wonder Week is about to Start

Before each Wonder Week most babies act in a predictable way. Yes, even your neighbor's baby that always seems so easy going! They will act fussy, clingy and probably sleep badly. Some babies will be more miserable than will some
parents! Why such a change? You can look at these posts, WW Book Review and What are the Wonder Weeks, for more on that. If you want to know when to expect one of these weeks, look at the post When are the Wonder Weeks?

A couple extra things before I get into the fussy signs
  • The fussy periods usually start and stop suddenly, which, of course, is always super fun as a parent :) 
  • Your baby's behavior during each fussy period may vary from the previous one.

Here's a list of SIGNS that a Wonder Week is about to start. The signs near the bottom of the list are more likely to happen with older babies.
  • Clinginess
  • Crankiness
  • Crying
  • Demands extra attention from caregiver
  • Fussiness
  • Sleep badly (won't fall asleep, wake often, wake early in the morning etc)
  • Restless sleeper
  • Wants to be held all day
  • May wanted to be treated like a tiny baby again (if she isn't still a tiny baby)
  • Extra cuddly with you or with objects
  • Loss of appetite
  • Stranger anxiety
  • Moody
  • Listless and Preoccupied and daydreamy
  • Wants to suck or nurse much more
  • Shyness
  • Refuse to have diaper or clothes changed
  • Regression of behavior and physical abilities
  • Jealousy
  • Mischievousness
  • Acts sweet (to get attention)
  • More temper tantrums
Yikes! Are you worn out yet? Don't worry. After each Wonder Week baby generally has a period where she is super happy and easy going. Many parents of extra fussy babies find themselves praying for this day to come! 

I wasn't planning on adding the below section when I started this post, but I think it'll help many of you feel better about yourselves and know that you aren't alone :) So here it is...

During this time Mom and other caregivers may feel:
  • Worried
  • Concerned
  • Exhausted
  • Trapped
  • Resentful
  • Irritated
  • Annoyed
  • Aggravated
  • Pressured by others
  • Insecure
  • Consider stopping breastfeeding
  • Overwhelmed!!

Has your baby experienced any of these signs before a Wonder Week? How did you handle these phases? Please share your experiences and any advice!


  1. So what do I do after all of the sleep training I have done during a milestone of Wonder Week. When they start waking early from naps or waking more often at night and I don't want to go back to the same old props, but need to help my lo learn a milestone(standing or crawling in crib)or be supportive during these hard times.And how do I distinguish between fussiness that happens during a Wonder Week and fussiness as tired cues and my lo happens to be extra tired one day and needs to be put down earlier than usual.

  2. Hi! Thanks for visiting my blog this week and leaving a comment! I am following you on fb as well.

    Really interesting post, especially since my 5 month old is doing just about everything you outlined above (and she's usually an angel!) Thanks!

  3. Sunflower,
    This is all tricky stuff to work with. I offer support when babies need it, but I try not to go over the line. So far I have been pretty good about figuring this out and haven't, for the most part, had any lasting issues. But I know some people have a hard time figuring out where to draw the line and they are left with a baby who no longer knows how to sleep by themselves everytime a disruption happens. Obviously things will be effected by the kind of baby you have too. It is hard to give exact guidlines for this. You will have to try to listen to your mommy instincts with all of this and only give the absolute necessary extra attention. I generally at least try to have baby fall asleep by themselves, even if I end up going in to comfort a lot. I try to keep things the same as usual as much as is possible. Sometimes I can tell that they no longer need comfort and just want attention so I will draw the line. With an illness I will give more attention than if they are in a wonder week or having a developmental change. They seem to need more at this time. Once again, it is tough and you will have to figure it out more as time goes by. I will think about this and see if I can get better guidelines!

    "how do I distinguish between fussiness that happens during a Wonder Week and fussiness as tired cues and my lo happens to be extra tired one day and needs to be put down earlier than usual."

    If you keep a regular routine you should have a good idea when baby usually gets tired so you'll know if they are probably ready for a nap or something else is going on. As time goes by you will get used to recognizing your child's tired signs compared to general fussy (don't feel good or i'm fussy for no reason) signs. Sometimes you just don't know. I don't know a single mom who can tell what is going on with a baby 100% of their life. You just do the best you can given the information you have.

    Good luck!

  4. Thanks for visiting we are angels. It is nice to know there may be a reason for the sudden changes in our baby, huh? I hoep the leap passes quickly for you!


  5. That pic is adorable! Jumping over to say thanks for visiting Crafty Zoo with Monkeys!

  6. What a great blog you have! Thanks so much for following and leaving your sweet comments! Many blessings to you!

  7. Yeah, that pic is a cutie ZooKeeper.

  8. Thanks for visiting SLR, and thanks for your nice comments :)


  9. Not sure if anyone has mentioned this but Wonder Weeks has an app for the's amazing! You put in your baby's due date and it tells you where your baby is developmentally, what each leap is, the signs and how to help them as they're going through it and how to help yourself deal with it :)

  10. Thanks for letting us know Carolyn! I was going to mention that in a future post. I have never tried the app but it sounds ever better than I thought it would be!


  11. Hello.. My baby is 18 weeks almost 4months.. We've never had great napping, always kinda of inconsistent. Worked awhile on wake time and always assumed it was the problem but not sure it really is/was. We've been doing CIO since Saturday for day sleep as her nights are great she sleeps from 730-545/6 and goes back asleep till wake time at 8am.. I haven't seen much progress with our CIO for day. She goes down no problem or crying at about 1hr 20min wake time. I've been letting her cry when she wakes after 45min-1 to the next feeding time.. Usually about an hour, she'll cry on and off.. Wondering how long CIO takes when doing it mid nap? Feeling very discouraged and wonder if I need to adjust

    1. Garrett and denise stone,
      Take a look at these posts if you haven't already...
      Some naps will not extend for some time, even with cio. After a week of consistency, if you don't have some progress, I'd guess time is what you really need. After a bit more time, she'll probably start to get happy upon waking, if she doesn't sleep. Or you can do another method.


  12. Hi Rachel,

    My little guy is currently in the events wonder week and we've found that he wakes at night after one slept cycle in around 5 out of 7 days. On these occasions he wakes crying and needs helpnto resettle.. Do you think this is related to the wonder week or something else?

    1. Abbey Gough,
      Oh, my, this is hard to say. It could be due to many things (as the long night wakings posts will tell you). But if it started right at the wonder week, it could be due to this. Sleep varies so much with each wonder week and each baby in a wonder week. Just make sure he isn't overtired or going to sleep too late, that is one of the main contributors to this.


  13. I think mine is nearing a wonder week. She refuses to eat and is only happy for brief moments, wants to be held constantly, wont take naps, and is very fussy. Lord I hope this ends soon!

    1. Abbymommy915,
      It sounds like it could be something like teething too.


  14. Is there an average time the peak of fussiness lasts during a wonder week? We are on day two of waking early from naps, throughout the night, fussiness eating but always wanting to eat, and lots and lots of crying.

    1. Katie van der laan,
      I don't have a great answer to this one. For me, it kind of went like an illness. Sometimes there was just several days of general crankiness. Other times there were a few really rough days surrounded by several days of mild crankiness. Sorry to not be more help!


  15. Really helpful article. My baby is 28 week and he wakes up every 2hours at night. He wont feel sleepy,even after having a bottle. The other day he was so cranky,that he refuse to take his last bottle before going to bed. I thought he would wake in the night for a feed,but he slept till six in the morning. Then he was back to normal he is still waking at night. Hope this end soon.