I don’t want to jinx it, but …
Posted on October 17, 2010
by Heather Laura Clarke
… for the last two nights, Baby Boy has only nursed TWICE. At midnight and at 4 a.m., both nights, like clockwork.
For those of you who are saying, “Um, so? He is four months old — that’s normal,” let me remind you that since Baby Boy was not quite three months, he has been nursing four or FIVE times a night. EVERY night, for a total of SEVEN weeks. FML, right?
We had no idea why he had gone from a baby who got at least one four-hour stretch at night (oh, those were the days!) to a baby who woke up every hour-and-a-half or two hours.
In the end, I have no idea which of those reasons caused him to wake up so frequently — maybe a combination of all of them. All I know is that sometimes I could send Darling Husband in, and he’d calm him with his soother, but most of the time, he would cry until I nursed him — and then he ate HUNGRILY while I slumped comatose in the glider and wondered when the bloody night was going to be over.
I was so tired every day that I seriously considered the rice cereal route
, but I just couldn’t bring myself to do it yet. All of the experts say to wait until six months before introducing ANYTHING other than breastmilk, and I didn’t want to defy them. They say it’s best for my baby! And, and, and … but I’m so tiiiiiiiired.
But before I broke down and tried the cereal, like a beautifully-wrapped present, Baby Boy only got me up three times to eat on Thursday night. And then twice for the last two nights. Sure, there were a couple of other times I had to go in and untangle limbs from crib bars, or give him his soother, but those are quickies. I only nursed him twice, and he ate well both times. Successsssss!
The most interesting thing is how he was different yesterday, after getting such a good sleep. He still slept for exactly 11 hours (went to bed at 8:30 p.m. and woke up at 7:30 a.m.), like he always does, except since he hadn’t woken up as much, he was happy when he woke up in the morning. Like babbling-to-himself-in-his-crib happy! And he actually took two good naps yesterday — one for two whole hours, and one for about 90 minutes. Much better than his usual 30- or 40-minute snoozes. Hallelujah!
So what did I do differently, to encourage such a good sleep? I really hate to admit this part, but if I’m being totally honest, there was
something I did differently, that may
be the cause. We did our whole bedtime routine
as usual, with the exception of reading his bedtime chapter in his glider
instead of on the couch — where, truthfully, sometimes I am too tired to read and we watch TV while he nurses off and on.
Seriously, that was the only change, but maybe it helped? Those Winnie-the-Pooh chapters are pretty long, and maybe lying there in the semi-darkness listening to me read put him in a sleepier state than, um, chilling on the couch in the semi-darkness watching Come Dine With Me? God, it looks terrible written down. Of course it helped!
OK, new resolution: read to Baby Boy in the glider every single night, even on those nights when I am too exhausted to move — much less hold a book and focus on tiny print. I am willing to do whatever works to get a better nights’ sleep for both of us. If that means sacrificing quality Brit programming, so be it!
I am so excited you are all getting more sleep! You give me hope that in a couple months when baby girl arrives that I will survive!! I may have to reread every post you have but whatever helps 😉