Thursday, February 23, 2012

Noah News: Week 15

Never a problem sleeping in the car seat!
Let's talk about sleep, baby - Holy moly what a week it has been. Up until this past week Noah was a great sleeper. Down for the night at 8, woke to eat at 3 & 6 and then up for the day at 8. Beautiful! Unfortunately, we found out about sleep regression this past week. It is a nightmare. The first night Noah was up every 1-2 hours. There was a lot of pacifier giving, tummy patting, rocking, and shhhhh-ing. I might have even slept on the floor next to his crib for a number of hours. Amazing where you can sleep when you are at the point of complete exhaustion. We decided that this shenanigan wasn't going to fly in our house and decided to lay down the law. AKA, Yikes. I never thought I would be doing any CIO this early on but for his sleep and our sanity it needed to be done. I don't have a need for him to sleep through the night just yet and feel like he still needs that 3am feeding so we decided that he needed to learn to sleep from 8 to 2 or 3. Last night looked like this:

7:30pm-6oz. bottle and down for the night (I read earlier bedtimes help sleep so we went with it)
8:15pm-Wakes up crying and we decide it is time to be tough (turn TV up a little louder)
9:00pm-Crying subsides (he wasn't hysterical the whole time)
9:01pm-High fives and congratulations on surviving without going in to get my little boy. It was HARD!
10:00pm-We head to bed.
10:25pm-More crying. BE TOUGH! (I said I would let him cry until 11 if needed and cracked open sleep book far this one is winning)
2:00am-Crying. He made it, time for a snuggle and feeding (oh how happy that made me to tell him that I didn't abandon him and give him kisses and comfort).
4:00am-More crying. Pacifier and tummy pats. Sleep on floor.
5:00am-More crying. Feed him again (he used to eat at 3 & 6 so 2 & 5 seemed fair).
6:45am-Crying. Send Scott in and he gets him back to sleep.
8:00am-Awake for the day. Big smiles in his crib! 

That is a lot of time stamps for one little boy. I am really hoping we can get that down to something like this:

8am-Up for the day.

Eventually we will work to cut out that 6am feeding but for now I will take the above schedule with open arms. Sleep regression is no joke but I feel confident that we have chosen the best solution for our family right now and hopefully we will see improvements night over night. 
This is what a breakdown looks like. This was the day after we returned home from St. Louis when Noah was hysterical at bedtime. We both ended up in tears!
Fresh Meat - Noah officially graduated from his 0-3 month "play" group to the 3-6 month group. He is now back at the bottom of the totem pole as we watch babies sit, roll, and even crawl a bit! The topic this past week was real food. I am taking it all in like a sponge and can't wait to get the ok to give our little guy his first bite. He loves to watch me eat so I am hopeful that will translate into him liking solids. I am considering skipping rice cereal...I have heard it has no nutritional value and constipates them...seems like two great reasons to stick with fruits & veggies.
This is one cool kid!
Breast is best - Since I don't have many headlines this week I figured I would give you my two cents on breastfeeding, as promised. Ok, it will be more like two dollars since I am feeling a bit wordy. In my opinion, there is a lot of social pressure to breastfeed. From the minute I found out I was pregnant, every website, class, and opinion seemed to be that "breast is best". I was weary of the whole thing and wasn't exactly psyched about breastfeeding but felt like I owed it to Noah to give it a shot. I can honestly say I am still not psyched about breastfeeding, BUT I also can't imagine giving it up. 

Let's break this down a bit...having to be available every 2.5 hours to sit down and feed my little guy is not exactly ideal in my book. There are times I wish I could just head out with a bottle and not think twice about how engorged I will get, what will it do to my supply to skip a feeding, where I will feed, etc... On the flip side, it is convenient to have food built in and not have to think about packing bottles. There is also the fun of bringing along a cover and trying to maneuver a shirt, bra, baby and nursing cover just to get started. It pretty much looks like a some kind of wild animal is trying to escape from under the cover until we get going. Nursing at home is far and away preferred.

I have made the commitment to do anything and everything to keep my supply up and steady until six months. This brings me to my next point; the pump. Pumping is not awesome. I pump twice a day to ensure my supply stays up, we have some to freeze, and enough to give a bottle a day. Pumping is a bit like getting your teeth cleaned. A necessity but a real pain!

I guess this isn't really getting to the point. A few weeks back I thought my supply was dwindling and that we were going to have to start giving Noah formula. I panicked. It was in that moment that I realized just how "on board" I am with breastfeeding. I want Noah to be exclusively breastfed until at least six months and now I wonder if I will still feel ok with whatever happens after that. My strong reaction to the thought of having to supplement was eye opening because I thought I didn't really care. I think some of my panic came from the idea that I had failed him. That my body couldn't provide what he needed and that was a tough pill to swallow. I think I am now in some kind of battle with myself to make sure that I can keep this up for as long as I want...anything less is not acceptable. Healthy, right?! Maybe the introduction of solids will help ease my freakishness about being his sole provider of food. We are hoping to do this at 4 months with doctor approval...fingers crossed!

If you are still reading, congrats and my apologies. If you skipped to the end, here is the summary...I don't love breastfeeding but wouldn't give it up for anything. The end.
I just want to gobble him up!!

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