I’m so fried right now, I can barely think straight.
The “baby” has learned how to climb out of his crib. He’ll be 2 next month. I’m not ready for him to be in a big-boy bed but he’s at risk for fracturing something if he keeps this up. And speaking of up, since he’s discovered this little trick, when he wakes up at 6am he no longer talks to himself in the crib. He gets out of this crib, opens his door and comes to my room. This morning he discovered there were monkeys on his pajamas.
“Yes, monkey,” I reply half-asleep.
(Louder) MOMMY!!!!! Monkey!!
(LOUDER) “DADDY!!! DADDDY! Monkey!”
“MOMMY! I hugry. Mommy! I HUGRY!”
“Too early for breakfast,” I mutter.
“DADDY! I hugry!”
“Okay,” in a very deep sleepy voice.
This goes on for about 10 minutes. I finally get up to get the kid some milk and the other two spawn are coming out of their room all bright-eye and bushy-tailed.
They are all smiles, “Hi Mommy! Can we go downstairs?”
What’s worse than one kid being sick?
How about three? Each one on the tail of the previous. Just as the eldest turns a corner towards the healthy side of the force, her baby brother spikes a fever and her other brother’s cough takes a turn towards the dark side.
I am curled up in bed waiting for the 1/2 tab of Gravol I just took to kick in. I am beyond exhausted and still feeling the remnants from last nights’ gingerbread festivities (hence the Gravol).
If I prayed to God I would wish for an uninterrupted nights’ blissful sleepy oblivion. That’s not too much to ask for, is it?
Where I live, daylight savings time ended last night. Gone are the days when an extra hour of sleep was something to look forward to. Since having kids, any extra hour of sleep is appreciated but this return to “normal time” sucks.
Because instead of waking up at 6:30am, my kids were all up today an hour early – at 5:30am – and when I say they were awake, they were AWAKE.
My 6 month old just got his vaccine yesterday. He weighed in at a whopping 18 lbs 6.5 oz. Two months ago he was just under 14 lbs. Talk about weight gain!!
Ah, the marvels of formula.
Pediatrician noted the huge jump in weight and asked what changed. I explained the transition to formula and then the next question was about his sleep. He has been still consistently getting up around 2-3am and then again at 5-6am. This is after going to sleep around 6pm, sleeping for 5-6 hours, then waking for a feed before husband and I turn in for the night. He is also now consistently taking solids (mainly just a mixed cereal now). She suggested that the 2-3am wake up probably isn’t related to hunger and we should try to let him cry it out. Alternatively, we could try the dream feed.
I’d heard about this dream feed from a friend of mine several years ago, but never needed it for the first two kids. Both had started sleeping through the night well before I returned to work (the first at 4 months of age, the second at 5 months of age). With less than two weeks to go, I really need this little man to start sleeping longer.
So, last night, I woke him up at 10:30pm and he drank 4-5 oz of formula. He fell back asleep pretty quickly after that, (and so did I), and didn’t wake again until 5am.
Fingers crossed this keeps up for the next 13 sleeps.
Over the weekend we had a first. As husband was putting the older two kids to bed they announced that they wanted to sleep together.
A bit of background. They share a room. Their room has bunk beds. The almost-3 year old is a little rascal and will not stay in bed at nighttime. He gets out of the lower bunk repeatedly to play, turn on the light, go out into the hallway etc, so much so that he often keeps his sister up and everyone is tired in the morning. So, we put the playpen (ie crib) in their room and the toddler sleeps there. How he still fits in it is anyone’s guess but once he’s in there he doesn’t climb out and everyone has a good night sleep.
Now, back to last weekend. The kids insisted they wanted to share the lower bunk. Daddy told them that if anyone got out of bed, made any fuss of any kind, they would be separated. Once he left their room, shenanigans ensued but they stayed in bed. We could hear them squealing and laughing for about 20-30 minutes, then all was quiet. Later that night, around 10:30pm when we went to bed, we peeked
in on them and found this.
A lot of people hate the month of January. I can understand why. It’s the month after Christmas, the VISA bill hurts, and the reality of winter sets in. For me, the first month of 2014 was pretty darn good.
I set out to blog daily and I did it.
I exercised daily, in one form or another.
I cut out desserts after dinner and lost close to 10 lbs.
I tried to run 3 times a week – the only thing that stopped me was bitterly cold temperatures and snow.
The month ended with me running three days in a row – yes, you read that right. I went for another run today. It was short, only 3.22 km for 26 minutes (10:1s). I ran a total of 44.4 km this month. What a great start to the year. I feel great.
Another milestone this month was introducing the baby to solid food and formula. In the past week he has started eating rice cereal twice a day, and in addition to some formula, last night was the first time he woke up only once. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, folks!! I’ll be weaning the baby over the next few weeks, I am close to being done with nursing. I need to get some good sleep for at least a month before I go back to work on April 1st.
I’d like to thank all of my readers and followers for sticking with me during this self-imposed daily posting month. I am having crazy thoughts about doing it again for February!
So, baby J is now 4 months old. Sleep training has begun and is going reasonably well. Daytime naps are still pretty short but once 5pm hits he is pretty dusted and will sleep 3-4 hour stretches until 6am. He still screams bloody murder at naps but it’s getting shorter and shorter and he’s starting to soothe himself asleep. Great progress all around.
The next hurdle is the formula introduction. I tried to give him a few ounces the other day and he looked up at me with the most disgusted of expressions as if he was thinking, “Woman, WTF is this?!”
Yesterday, I delegated the task to husband and he worked his Jedi magic and the baby drank the formula.
Daddy milk is starting.
I plan to continue nursing for at least another month if I can. I just would like to get some more sleep, so I hope with more formula there will be less nighttime awakenings. Of course this likely means that my supply will start to take a nosedive. Damned if I do and damned if I don’t.
So, I’ve started sleep training baby J. The reason? This:
Both are amazing and needed in the immediate newborn period; the soother because babies need to suck and it’s just not practical to be a human soother all of the time; the swaddle because the moro reflex interrupts sleep and newborns/infants need to feel tight and secure when they sleep.
But there comes a time when both become a) a hassle, and b) a crutch.
Let me explain.
The soother becomes a crutch because once baby falls asleep, if the soother falls out of the mouth, the baby wakes up and starts crying. Mom and dad have to go back into the room, re-position the soother and baby falls asleep. This becomes a hassle when it occurs a bajillion times a night.
The swaddle becomes a hassle when baby starts moving around and pulls the Houdini routine and you walk into the room when baby is screaming only to find the soother still in the mouth but the baby’s arms are out of the swaddle and the kid doesn’t know what to do with them.
Both of what I described above started happening on a regular basis with baby J and one exhausted morning last week, I decided it was time to stop swaddling. The soother remained, but after two return trips to the crib to replace said soother in the span of ten minutes, another decision was made. Bye-bye soother.
What ensued next?
Yes. Blood-curdling screaming. Poor kid didn’t know what to do. Arms were flailing all over the place, legs kicking up a storm and there is me, face to face with screaming and quietly doing this:
At some point though, one just has to leave the room and let the baby cry. And cry he did. But he stopped eventually and fell asleep, for about 20 minutes.
The the screaming started again. I looked over at my cat who was sleeping on the couch next to me and she gave me this look:
Ah … sleep training.
Excuse me while I tend to the infant … in the time it took for me to write this post, about 20 minutes, he slept and is now awake.
Until I had children, I didn’t even really think twice about it. Back in medical school and family medicine residency, I remember hearing about how babies need to learn how to sleep. This was a totally foreign concept to me.
It’s pretty much all I think about these days.
Baby J is 4 months old. He’s been swaddled and using a soother to sleep. For the past week, he’s been getting out of the swaddle and there have been multiple trips back to the crib to replace the soother in the middle of the night.
The time has come to sleep train.
It’s been 24 hours so far. We are both exhausted.
Forgive the short post but I can barely keep my eyes open.