We swaddle BabyMort at night to help her sleep a little better. We got this “Halo Sleep Sack Swaddle” as a hand-me-down from my brother and think it’s fantastic, because we can easily unswaddle her when it’s time to eat or change a diaper without having to undo the swaddle. It really does seem to help her sleep, but when I unswaddle her for the day, she ends up like this:
I said it. I feel almost ashamed admitting it, because I feel like mom’s are “supposed” to enjoy the experience. But I just don’t. BabyMort eats pretty much every 2 hours. Once at night she might go about 3 hours and she’s sporadically gone about 3.5 hours, but usually she’s rooting for food every 2 hours. It takes her about 30+ minutes to eat and get burped and then we have to hold her upright for at least 15 minutes or she’ll spit up everything she just ate. As a result, I spend almost half my day feeding with her. Sneak in a little sleep, meals and a shower and I feel like I don’t have time to do anything else.
That is frustrating to me, but I don’t think it’s the reason I dislike breastfeeding. I would say the two big contributing factors are that: 1) She’s started arching her back while eating, out of nowhere, taking me with her. It hurts, and I know she doesn’t mean to hurt me, but oh man it HURTS!! And it hurts through the rest of the time she’s feeding. 2) The other reason is probably linked to me being a control freak. I hate not knowing how much she’s eating. There are times when she’s acting hungry an hour after her last meal, and since I have no idea how much she eats at any time, I don’t know if she really is hungry or just needing comfort. She tends to fall asleep while she’s eating, which only makes it harder to know if she’s gotten enough to eat.
I don’t plan on stopping. I know this is what I want for my baby girl, but I can’t say it’s the great bonding experience that I heard so much about.
I can’t believe she’s 4 weeks old already, but I also can’t remember life before her (that might just be because of sleep deprivation though :-P) She’s definitely getting bigger. As you can see, she’s bigger than her monkey now.
"Me & My Monkey" on my birthday!!
"Me & My Monkey" at 4 weeks
We’re still getting everything figured out. She’s colicky, and although deep down we realize only time will totally fix it, we’re still trying to find something that will help her feel better. When she’s not crying, we’ve noticed that she has a more character in her facial expressions. We definitely see her eyes a lot more than we did at first – and they’re gorgeous!! We’ve started trying a little tummy time, but I don’t know that I’ve timed it right for her, so we’re still working on it.
Our “project” for the next few weeks is to try to go longer than 2 hours between nighttime feedings and have her sleeping in her crib (and not on us) in between feedings. Wish us luck!!
BabyMort seems to have tummy issues. Quite often, after she eats, she just screams. We can generally calm her down by bouncing, swaying, walking, shushing…or some combination thereof, but it usually only works for a few minutes before she’s at it again. At night, she didn’t want to sleep in her crib, she much preferred to be held by one of us, which I think has to do with being laid down flat. The whole situation makes DaddyMort and I miserable, not only because we’re constantly dealing with a screaming baby and little sleep, but because we wish we could make her feel better!! I don’t think any parent likes seeing their child in pain – especially when there’s nothing you can do to make it better.
We tried gas drops after her feedings. They seemed to help a little, but definitely didn’t solve the problem. She went to the chiropractor, with the hopes that an adjustment (and for the record, because people give me a strange look when I tell them this, her adjustment was far different than an adult adjustment and I have full faith in Dr. Rod that he wouldn’t do anything potentially harmful to my little girl!!) would get everything lined up and help her digestive system work a little better. Considering the physical trauma she went through during birth, we figured an adjustment made sense. She slept a little better that night, but it was probably just coincidence, because it didn’t seem to help long term.
Most recently, we tried Gripe Water. It’s basically water with ginger, fennel and sometimes chamomille in it. These herbs are all supposed to aid in digestion and help out a baby’s immature digestive system. We gave it to her for the first time on Friday night and she spent the whole night sleeping in her crib. She ate at 10, 1, 3, 5 and 7. Ideally, we’d like her go longer between feedings, but her sleeping in her crib was a good first step. We tried it again before bed last night and she slept on the exact same schedule. We only gave her a dose after her 10PM feeding, so we might try giving her another dose midway through the night to see if that helps her sleep a little longer. We think sometimes she’s just waking up because she’s uncomfortable, and then eats because it’s comforting. But for now, I think we’re going to call gripe water a success!!
She can latch on like a pro. Unfortunately for her, she wasn’t getting anything out of dad’s hand…
DaddyMort and I have uttered that phrase many, many times over the last few days. It never seems to work though. Inevitably, BabyMort convinces us that she is indeed hungry. You can’t blame us for thinking it though, when she’s already spent 40 of the last 60 minutes eating. Or when she’s been fed from a bottle, so we know she had 4 oz. only 1.5 hours ago.
I’m really hoping that she’s going through a growth spurt, because it’s getting a little ridiculous. If this goes on much longer, I’m going to have to figure out a way to just hook her up to some sort of continuous feed…
When Chloe was 12 days old, someone asked me what the best baby product we had was. At the time, I didn’t have a great answer. We had some things we really liked – the boppy pillow is great for feedings and for propping her up to sit and the SwaddleMe blankets are great for helping her sleep at night. Then a few days later we purchased a bottle warmer to help DaddyMort out with his nighttime feeding. See, I’m a lucky girl and my husband has encouraged me to pump so that he can give her 1 bottle overnight, allowing me to sleep for more than 2 hours in a row!! The problem was, that by the time he heated up the water and then heated up the bottle in the warm water, Chloe would be screaming, which wasn’t fun for her or him and it sort of defeated the purpose, because I’d be wide awake by that point. So, we got this:
It has a cooler section on the back that can fit 2 bottles and vials on the side for measuring the water needed to heat the bottle. With these features, we never even have to leave her room to heat a bottle and it’s ready in about a minute – about the time it takes to change a diaper!!
And Chloe laughed at us!! (Well, not really, but she might as well have…)
At 4:15 AM, we had been trying everything we could think of to calm Miss Chloe Mae down for over an hour, with no luck. So we decided to try a car ride, because previous car rides have had her out cold within a block. We tried to pick a route that was free of stop signs/lights, with DaddyMort driving and me riding in the back to keep an eye on Chloe. After 15 minutes of driving, we pulled into the driveway with her still WIDE AWAKE.
*sigh* At least it was a weekend and we were able to sleep a little later…
After her umbilical cord stump fell off on Friday we switched to full-time cloth diapering. We had been using some prefolds and covers with an umbilical cord dip in them, but didn’t have enough for all the time use. The majority of the diapers we have are the BumGenius 3.0 one size – pictured below in the smallest configuration. As you can see, it’s still pretty big on her!! They go up pretty high on her and she’s left with a pretty bulky butt, but they do their job, so no complaints here!!
We’ve been at it less than a week, but we’re feeling good about it. We’ve already made a few modifications to our system – for example, the wet bag we’d gotten for home wasn’t really big enough, so we bough a trash can and are using a pillowcase to line it. We’re keeping it next to the washer and empty our wet bags into it as needed. I’m sure there will be more modifications as time goes on, but hopefully we’ll be able to roll with the changes and continue to think that we’ve made a good decision!!