Friday, May 15, 2009

Nuts 'n Bolts

Photo shows Maren perched on a pillow RIGHT by the baby (she has to be right where the action is) as Paige has her "breakfast burrito."
Hi friends! Phew! It’s been BUSY here! And Oh, my aching tailbone. I feel like I have a softball jammed up my butt. Isn’t that a joyous thought? That’s why I started off with it. I knew that having a newborn would be hard work, but I hadn’t quite realized just how hard it was in terms of wearing you out and exhausting you. As I’d said, I KNEW it, but just didn’t GET it since it hadn’t happened to me yet. Now, I’m learning quickly that newborns have their own schedules and do not have any sort of consistency. The only thing I can count on is that she’ll eat every 3 to 3.5 (sometimes 4!) hours. She doesn’t necessarily sleep in between, which I’d always assumed happened. She hasn’t much slept during the day, so naps for myself have been out of the question. She’s so alert and curious about things but sheesh! I just let her lay quietly in the Pack ‘N Play or I let her hang out in the swing if the Pack ‘N Play doesn’t cut it for her. The rest of the time she likes to fuss and yell and therefore wants to be walked around, held, or rocked. In the evening, she likes to fuss a lot for no reason and it’s hard to get her to go down to sleep. But when she does, she gets a good stretch of about 4 hours before she wakes to feed and then another 3 or so (sometimes with 2 hours of fussing added in for fun). I’ll take what I can get and I am thrilled with it! What’s been helping a lot is that Chris takes her in the evenings and after dinner I run to bed (around 7) and he takes those feedings until midnight. Anything after that is mine. That way, I get 4 or so hours of sleep in a stretch and so does he. I’d do an extra feeding if I were able to nap during the day, but no dice! So, that answers any questions I’ve gotten in regards to how the baby is doing/what her habits are like so far. Typical newborn stuff! She already weighs 8 pounds and has grown another whole inch. I can’t believe how fast she’s growing! Her health is perfect and she’s a great eater, taking in 3.5 ounces to 4 ounces per feeding. So, that’s the nuts ‘n bolts and facts of how we’re doing. We’re hanging in there! The book that is comforting for me and very interesting and informative is “Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child” by Marc Weissbluth M.D. In layman’s terms it says that the first 6 weeks will suck really bad but then it starts to improve after that. And it goes into the whys, hows, and what-to-dos. It’s been a great comfort to know that all of this is very normal, typical, and natural. Her fussing is normal and when we can’t console her, it’s nice to at least know that it isn’t our or her fault. It’s just medically natural. We were fooled for the first week when Paige slept great all day and night. We learned from the book that this is called the "honeymoon" week. The fussing supposedly starts at 1 to 2 weeks and yes, that is what happened. It was a nice honeymoon though!! I just wanted to check in with this little update and say hello. I hope you are all well!! I hope to update soon with some fun photos and other thoughts.

4 comments :

Lor said...

Wow, this takes me back to last July. It IS exhausting, isn't it? And then, one day, which will seem both scary and magic to you, she will sleep through the whole night.

Time flies! In a few weeks she will smile to you!

Lyndsay said...

Hi! I thought I would respond to your comment on my blog today.

Paige is SO beautiful!! I love her big eyes. :)

The Miracle Blanket works so well because their arms are secured down. Maya and Finn both wriggled out of everything else. It helps babies to feel very secure, and not startle awake with their arms. Maya prefers this blanket to every other type of swaddle. She started sleeping through the night when I started using it at night, too (but she was also about 7 weeks, and her weight could handle going longer stretches without eating). The double swaddle puts the perfect amount of pressure on her tummy, so it helps her colic, too. The blanket is 100% worth it, in my opinion. And if you don't like it, they will take it back for a full refund.

Also, for a gassy tummy or fussiness try:
-Mylecon drops
-Dr. Brown's bottles with the patented air flow system (worked wonders with Finn!)
-Hold her tummy-down or on her side while swaddled, then sit and bounce on an exercise ball. That always helped to calm both my babies pronto.

If you get desperate for sleep, you could try letting her sleep in the swing at night (if she likes her swing). That was the only way I kept my sanity the first 3 weeks! I would swaddle Maya's top half, and then buckle her into the swing. Off to dream land for a 4 hour stretch between feedings.

Hang in there! You are doing great. :) Like Lor said, watch for that first smile and coo around 6 weeks. It's fantastic.

good thoughts said...

I feel your pain old friend! I am sure you guys are doing a wonderful job!! I am so glad that you and chris are tag teaming the feedings - it does help SO much. Is Paige real gassy? Holding Peyton's legs/butt up in the air while she's laying on her back help her out. As well as being on her tummy. Hang in there,I am sure there are moments when the exhaustion is overwhelming, but it DOES get better. And like everyone else said - that first time she smiles and you realize you are the one she's smiling at, you will be above cloud 9 :) Chat with you soon!

Colette said...

Paige is such a cutie!
My first was the same- we called it the "Witching Hour"- he would cry for a couple hours every night at sundown and there was nothing that would help. It's really tough when you're in the middle of it, but it ends and will seem like a distant memory soon enough.
By the way- I've been followng your blog and imagine my surprise when my #2 was born right after yours. April 30th! And the no sleep thing is just as fun the second time around :)

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