Tuesday, December 19, 2006

How Things Have Been Going

Baby Boy is sleeping MUCH better since we gave him a chance to learn how to soothe himself back to sleep. He's taken to sucking on his fingers quite a bit, as you can see in the johnny-jump-up picture below. I am amazed at how long he naps now. Before, his naps in the crib were 20-40 minutes long; now they're more like 1 1/2-2 hours. And if he wakes up at night, he just sucks on his fingers or his lovey for a few minutes and conks out again.

Now the problem I'm having is that I still can't sleep at night, even though Baby Boy is doing great. This morning, I woke up when Baby Boy fussed a bit around 1 A.M. because his diaper was very wet. I changed it and he fell right back to sleep. Unfortunately, I could not go back to sleep at that point, even though I'd only had 2 1/2 hours of sleep, so I've been up ever since. I've been mostly going on adrenaline for the last 4 months, so I think my body just needs to learn how to sleep again.

Baby Boy definitely misses his pacifier, although I think his longing for it is subsiding as he gets more adept at getting his fingers positioned the way he wants them in his mouth.

Something strange that I was not anticipating in all this is that Baby Boy at first started nursing much less. For a couple days, he would take only one breast at a feeding session, and only for a few minutes. I was beginning to get concerned that he wasn't getting enough, so I did some research and found that a baby can develop trouble nursing if his time with mama decreases rapidly. I had been holding or laying down with Baby Boy for all of his naps, and then I went abruptly to putting him in the crib for every nap. I think it was just too much all at once for him, and fighting nursing was his way of telling me something was wrong. So I've been careful to spend extra cuddle time with him when he is awake and to take a couple of naps with him. Now his nursing is better than ever. This afternoon, he nursed for 40 minutes straight. Poor little dear. So many changes in his little world, but in the long run, they are in his best interest.

I realized today that I really need to update my blogroll and reading list. I will work on that when I have a chance.

Edited to add:

Hi luvs2bmommy,

Thank you for your concern and for taking the time to join Blogger and leave me your comments.

Baby Boy has actually never nursed only 5 times in one day. The count was at 5 when I was writing that post, but I woke him later that night to give him another feeding. I'm trying to stay loosely on a 6:30-9:30-12:30-3:30-6:30-10:00 schedule, but it's not rigid, especially if I felt that Baby Boy did not get enough at a particular nursing session. If that's the case, I usually feed him again about an hour later.

This morning, I fed him at 6:30 as usual. When I was getting ready to put him down for a nap at 8:00, he was acting hungry, so I went ahead and nursed him to sleep and put him in his crib.

For the most part, I enjoyed having Baby Boy in our bed for the first few months, but now, we wake each other up and neither one of us gets good sleep, so it's better for him to be in the crib now.

As for pumping, I did it for the first couple of nights when Baby Boy started going longer without nursing, but even then, I only pumped out a couple of ounces to take the edge off the discomfort of my poor engorged breasts. They have adjusted now.

All this to say that in real life, I am still more flexible and paying attention to Baby Boy's cues than maybe it sounded like I was in my posts. I admit, it is sometimes difficult to know what to do when there is so much conflicting information out there.


prayzgod said...

Nourishing Traditions is on my reading list as well. Also, I've read the vaccination book in your list - it's very good. I'd like to re-read it, but it is currently in storage in a different state. :-?

Anonymous said...

Hi! I checked out your blog and understand what you are going through. I have a 15 month old, so I am a bit farther out than you are and can see the light at the end of the tunnel.

I was a bit concerned with your last few posts. I wanted to refer you to la leche league for further information. Also, many pediatritions can help as well. You were concerned because your baby is only nursing about five times a day. From what I have been told, researched and experienced, this is not enough. It should be six to eight times a day, with more feedings if the baby is going through a growth spurt, has come in contact with someone who is sick (the baby will up its feedings automatically in these two instances and you will be wondering what is going on..just go with it) or is in pain.

That your baby was beginning to stop nursing is NOT a good thing! Babies can begin to early wean themselves AND fail to thrive. To get to the fatty milk, your baby has to nurse on the first breast for at least 20 min, so nursing for forty min on one side is normal at this age (my daughter is 15 months and can empty me much faster now and nurses much less frequently). If the baby is doing less time than that, and/or being switched to different breasts, they never get full. Also, pumping can wreak havoc with your whole nursing system. I had to completely stop because it caused so many problems (not the least of which was I wasn't getting any sleep because I was nursing, getting the baby to sleep, pumping, trying to fall asleep, the baby would wake up...etc)

I have been where you are, and know the exhaution. I simply slept with my baby as much as possible until she was about 11 months old. This doesn't mean I always slept with her, nor that I slept with her the whole night. She often wanted to sleep in her swing or crib after nursing and falling into a deep sleep. But I didn't down her nursings until she was much older and SHE decided to do it while begining to eat.

I know some people say that babies should only eat every three hours, others say they can go 12 hours without eating. Well, that may have worked for THEIR baby. You have to go off what YOUR baby is telling you. Everyone's milk supply is different and every baby has a different stomach size. The baby is the best judge of when to eat.

This is why I couldn't do the cry it out method. I couldn't stand the way my baby looked when she gave up that I was coming to get her. Yeah, she stopped crying. She stopped believing in me.

Thank God I didn't continue it. I would have missed the two times she had very dangerous fevers and could only whimper and when she began throwing up from Rotavirus and was too weak to make a sound. Both times, she was next to me and I was able to immediatly assist her. AND I knew something was up because of her increased nursing. In fact, the nursing probably saved her life as they were barely able to get an IV in her and if I had not been feeding her, on demand, through the night, she wouldn't have made it. That was from the ER staff. The nurses had me nurse her even though she was throwing it back up. It comforted her and what she held down saved her.

Just please, check into it. Listen to your instints and TRUST your baby. I felt so strongly about this I joined blogger just to leave you this comment.

Many Blessings :)

Melissa said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
prayzgod said...

Take it from a non "attachement parent," but from a "logic-approach parent," you are doing just fine. My four survived just fine on schedules. I did/do the same as you. If baby seems hungry before the next scheduled feeding, then feed the baby. However, make sure it's hunger, and not a tummy ache, as babies sometimes act hungry when in fact it's just a tummy ache/gas.

My baby acts hungry almost each day at 5pm, even though she had rice ceral and milk at 3pm. I give her about an ounce of water, then she is as happy as can be, and is quite comfortable until her next feeding.