Sunday, November 18, 2012

Newborn Summary: Week 5

Nursing: I had some issues with nursing this week. I had mentioned last week that I wanted to start pumping more to build a milk supply. Well, I tried that, but it didn't work. Because I nurse from one side at a time, when I pumped in the morning, it just basically took what I had and it hadn't fully replenished by the time she would eat next. So I tried feeding her from both sides all day, but she never seemed to have enough & she wouldn't sleep well & would be fussy all day. I tried it for 2 days & decided it just wasn't that worth it to build a pumped milk supply. I went back to just feeding her in the morning & doing one side at a time all day. As soon as she starts sleeping 12 hours consistently, I can pump at 10:00 before I go to bed to get a bottle. 
 
I'm also going to just pump when I'm at school when I go back to work & just have that. This means I'll have to supplement with formula, but I knew I would have to do that either way at some point. This way I can keep my supply up and for sure be able to at least feed her first thing in the morning and right before bed for an extended period of time. I would love to keep doing that until she's a year old if I could maintain the supply.
 
Once I stopped pumping in the morning, she went back to eating like normal and eating a lot. We weighed her one morning and she was 11 lbs! So she's doing fine with eating.
 
Burping: She still burps once after most feedings, but I don't burp her in the middle of the night.
 
Reflux: She spits up if she's eaten a lot and she spits up a little bit after most feedings, but it's really not a lot at all. She did have her 3rd projectile spit-up situation one day & it went all over my clean jeans - which are 1 of 2 pairs of jeans that fit me right now. I wasn't very happy.
 
Waketime: I'm still doing about 45 minutes first thing in the morning and about an hour every time after that. If you're looking for a great post on how I figure out what to do and when, check out the Helpful Routine Information post on the Babywise Mom blog. I seriously refer to this post all the time. I also use her Optimal Waketime post to figure out what is about normal for wake times in different age ranges. If you look at both of those, 1 hour of waketime is at the high end for her age range, but I'm trying to get her to a schedule that would be helpful for my babysitter at 12 weeks. It's a process to get her there, so I'm taking it slowly.
 
Witching Hour: We have really figured out this time. She is still a little fussy from about 5-6:30, but we've found that she will take a little catnap in the swing for about 30-45 minutes & usually she will sleep until about 6:00. She'll be a little fussy from 6 until about 6:30 when I feed her, but it's really not bad.
 
Swaddling: I have successfully dropped 1 arm from the swaddle for naps and nighttime. I swaddle her with her left arm out. I plan on keeping this for the next 2 weeks and then trying to take the other arm out. That is, unless she does something that makes me think she's ready for it sooner. I love Babywise's idea of parent-directed things. I do parent-directed feeding where I use both the clock and my own observations and intuitions as I watch her cues to decide when to feed her. I also use parent-directed decisions with other things. For example, that I would think I would wait 2 weeks before dropping the other arm from the swaddle, but that I will watch her for signs that she's ready and use both of those things to decide when to actually drop it.
 
As far as the process for dropping it, I started by swaddling her left arm really loosely and I had always swaddled it with her arm bent up by her face, but with it swaddled loosely she could pretty easily get it out. I did that for a few days and she did fine and got her arm out about 9 out of 10 times that she was sleeping. So I then just took her arm completely out. She cried a little more than normal before going to sleep the first night, but then she slept fine! So the next day I took it out for all the naps and she still slept about the same as normal. That just told me for sure she was ready, so we never went back.
 
Nighttime Sleep: This week she has started consistently stretching her amount of time she sleeps at night. She had a rough time most nights going down to sleep, but then she did awesome for all her feedings at night. We are still doing the consistent bedtime. I feed her at 6:30 and then do a bath at 7:00 and put her down after that. I can't decide if doing the bath for her bedtime routine is the best. It seems to wake her up a little more than it did Isis & I wonder if that contributes to her crying before sleep, but I would like to give them a bath at the same time at night to just make it easier on us and to not do 2 baths a day in terms of water usage. So for a little while I'm going to keep doing it, but I might experiment next week with doing the bedtime routine without a bath a few days and see if she sleeps better. I can always add it back later once she gets really consistent with going to sleep on her own. Here's her nighttime rundown for the week: 
 
Night 1 - Friday Night - This night, we put her down at 7:15-ish and she cried most of the time until 9:00, with about a 30-45 minute period of sleep in the middle. I got her up & fed her at 9:00 and she went right down after that. She ate at 6:45, 9:00, 3:15 & 7:00. There was only 1 feeding after we went to bed (3:15) and her longest stretch was 6.25 hours from 9:00 to 3:15.
 
Night 2 - Saturday Night - This night, we put her down at 7:15-ish and she cried until about 8:30 and then slept for an hour. She woke back up at 9:30, so I fed her again and she went right down after that. We are trying to do a dreamfeed, but she doesn't usually make it that long. She ate at 6:40, 9:30, 1:30 & 7:00. There was only 1 feeding after we went to bed (1:30) and her longest stretch was 5.5 hours from 1:30 to 7:00.
 
Night 3 - Sunday Night - This night, she did about the same thing as Saturday night. I fed her at 6:30, 9:30, 5:00 and 7:30. There was only 1 feeding after we went to bed (5:00). This night, she actually didn't wake up after the 9:30 feeding. We woke up at 5:00 and realized she hadn't woken up & what time it was & we got her up to feed her. We were worried because we think she still needs a nighttime feeding like that to get enough to eat. When we got up in the morning, that was when we weighed her & we realized that she is at 11 lbs now. According to most sources I've looked at, once a baby reaches 12 lbs, they are physically able to sleep 10-12 hours at night, so I decided if she does a night like this again, we won't wake her up to eat. She is clearly doing fine in terms of eating & weight gain. Anyway, her longest stretch was 7.5 hours from 9:30 to 5:00. 
 
Night 4 - Monday Night - This night, she did about the same as the other nights where she cried, then slept briefly, then woke up at 9:00. She ate at 6:30, 9:00, 4:00 and 7:00. She had 1 feeding after we went to bed (4:00) and her longest stretch was 7 hours from 9:00 to 4:00.
 
Night 5 - Tuesday Night - This night, she did the same as the other nights. She ate at 6:30, 9:00, 3:30 and 7:30. She had 1 feeding after we went to bed (3:30) and her longest stretch was 6.5 hours from 9:00 to 3:30.
 
Night 6 - Wednesday Night - This night was actually pretty great & I'm not sure what the difference was. I didn't do as much of a bath this night. I actually didn't even wipe her off. This is what made me think that maybe we shouldn't do baths with her bedtime routine. She ate at 6:30 and I put her down around 7:15 again. She cried for about 10 minutes or so while we put Isis down for bed, but by the time we came out of Isis' room, she had stopped crying. From there she barely fussed the rest of the night. She fell asleep and didn't wake up, so I got her up at 10:00 for a dreamfeed. So her feedings for the night were at 6:30, 10:00, 4:15 and 7:30. She had 1 feeding after we went to bed (4:15) and her longest stretch was 6.25 hours from 10:00 to 4:15.
 
Night 7 - Thursday Night - This night she did the same thing as Wednesday night! She cried after I put her to bed, but by the time I was out of Isis' room from doing her bedtime stuff, she was silent. I saw she was awake on the monitor, but I didn't hear her again. I checked a little while later & she was asleep! Very exciting. So her feedings for the night were at 6:30, 10:00, 3:20 and 7:30. She had 1 feeding after we went to bed (3:20) and her longest stretch was 5.25 hours from 10:00 to 3:20.
 
Naps: Her naps are still a little hit or miss overall, but this week we had a breakthrough!! On Tuesday, I brought the swing downstairs & decided we were just going to really go for it because she was having a really rough nap day. I put her in the swing for a nap & she cried for a little bit, but then fell asleep in the swing for about 2 hours!! I then put her in it again that night for a catnap during her last nap of the day & she slept in it again! So then I tried it again for a nap on Wednesday when my mom came over to watch her while I went to the gym. She slept in the swing again for my mom for about 2 hours! So that actually makes my life a lot easier. If she will nap in the swing, I have that backup if it's a bad nap day. I am still trying to put her down for a nap in the crib at least for the first nap every day, but I can always switch to the swing if she's not sleeping. 
 
I did this with Isis and here is my personal opinion on it: I think that for the first several weeks, it's most important to get them to sleep & to establish that routine. I think that routine works for a lot of reasons, the main one being that all of our bodies operate on circadian rhythms and metabolism. Just like I get hungry about the same time every day because I eat lunch about the same time every day when I'm at school, babies do the same thing. I think our bodies learn to get hungry or tired about the same time every day if we are on a consistent schedule. Therefore, I think it is important during the first 12 weeks to get their bodies used to a certain routine. With Isis, I let her nap in the swing from about 6 weeks to about 12 weeks. Her body got used to sleeping about the same time everyday and when I transitioned her to the crib, it was fairly painless! So I'm using the swing when needed right now, but I'm still working on the crib for naps at first. All of it is really trying to set her up for a good schedule for the babysitter in January.
 
Sibling: Isis is doing great with Lux, but she's still having transitional issues with me & Lewis. There are several things: she is louder & more whiny & I believe it is to get our attention. We are trying to give her attention & lots of positive reinforcement. We are also being firm that we do not tolerate being whiny & I feel like my mantra when I'm around her is "use your words" or "use your big girl voice." It can be exhausting, but we're all just adjusting. Some of that was there before Lux came as well. I think she's also just at that age.
 
Schedule: Here is our goal schedule for the day, although sometimes it starts at 7:00 and sometimes it starts at 7:30.
 
7:00 - wake up, diaper change & nurse
7:45 - nap
10:00 - wake up, diaper change & nurse
11:00 - nap
1:00 - wake up, diaper change & nurse
2:00 - nap
4:00 - wake up, diaper change & nurse
5:00 - nap
5:45/6:00 - wake up, diaper change
6:30 - nurse
7:00 - bedtime routine with bath (?)
7:15 - bed
9:30/10:00 - dreamfeed
1 night feeding
 
Here are some thoughts about the schedule that I was thinking last week I should include:
  • I have to wake her pretty  much every time during the day. She's not waking on her own. I am waking her to fit in a certain number of feedings, to get her on a good schedule & to make sure she doesn't sleep longer than about 2-2.5 hours during the day. I personally don't let a baby sleep longer than 2.5 hours during the day to make sure their long stretches are at night & that they differentiate night & day.
  • I work for that amount of wake time, but it doesn't always happen. Sometimes she's too sleepy & so I just put her down. This goes back to the parent-directed thing I was talking about. What I do is at about 45-50 minutes, I start watching her. I look for nap cues. If she yawns or rubs her eyes or her eyes get droopy or she starts to get a little fussy, then I put her down. If it gets to have been an hour of wake time & she doesn't show any of those signs, I just go ahead and put her down & assume I missed them. This has worked for me & she naps well most days.
  • On a bad nap day, she will wake early from naps. If she does this, I first of all try to hold her or put her in the swing or something like that. If that doesn't work to get her back to sleep, then I feed her. I assume she's hungry & I always take into consideration that it could be a growth spurt - or like in the case with my pumping issue, it could be that she didn't get enough to eat before. So I am in no way a slave to the schedule or a slave to the clock. I'm definitely using it for a guide, but I'm watching Lux to see what she needs.
  • There is crying before she goes down for pretty much every nap and night time. So here's my philosophy on cry-it-out: If she has a clean diaper, a full belly, has been cuddled & kissed & has shown signs of sleepiness, then I am okay with putting her down & if she cries, I will let her. We usually wait about 7-10 minutes & if she has cried the whole time, one of us will go in (obviously me if it's during the day) & comfort her. This could be patting her belly, it could be just talking quietly to her & in some cases, it could be picking her up & trying to burp her or just calm her down. No matter what we do, we try to leave the room again within 1 minute. We always want to put her down awake. If she cries again, we start the 7-10 minute timer over again. When we go in, we are also checking for if she has spit up or if she pooped, because if either of these happen, she could need to be changed (clothes or diaper). Also, with the 7-10 minutes, if at any point in there, she stops crying for more than like 15-30 seconds, I start the timer over again. Usually if she's crying really hard, like really screaming, we might only do 5 minutes and then sometimes if she's just sort-of fussing, but not really crying, we may not go in at all. Again - I use my instincts. But I needed to be clear that I'm not doing anything to help her go to sleep like rocking her to sleep or anything like that. The only thing I may do now is put her in the swing, but I put her in the swing and walk away, just like the crib, so if she cries, it's the 7-10 minute situation. Either way, she is alone while she is learning to go to sleep.
Mom Stuff: This week I focused on going back to the gym!! I went on Sunday and did 18 minutes on the elliptical machine. I'm focusing on cardio at first. I also went on Wednesday and did 25 minutes on the elliptical. I went to Old Navy and bought some new gym clothes. I got some cold-weather clothes so that I also can go run (or walk) around my neighborhood when I can't go to the gym. Right now my mom is coming over for an hour or so on the days that she isn't working. (She's working at Macy's for the holidays.) This way I can go to the gym really quick. I am also going on either Saturday or Sunday mornings because Lewis is at home. Then when Lewis gets home from work on the days that I can't go to the gym, I'm hoping to go out really quick for a run (or walk - let's be honest - running would be overly ambitious). Going back to the gym has made me feel a lot better!

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