Saturday, January 28, 2012

Post Partum WTF

Cue the bliss...

Cue the happiness...

And, Scene.

I wish it were that easy. I realized a few things these past 4 months since A has been around.

1. DH was not an asshole before we got preggars, so he probably isn't being an asshole now.
2. We were married for five years before A arrived. We were close friends. Adding a baby makes this transition so much harder because it has been just us for so long.
3. I/We have to redefine what our relationship is now and not dwell on how it used to be. This point is mostly for me to simmer.
4. Parenting A is my job. For the most part. Period. I cannot change this. DH steps in but quickly steps away whenever possible. This is the world we live in, his beliefs, and the way it is. I can stew and be pissed all I want, but we all know that people don't change.
5. There is no such thing as 50/50.
6. I might have to relinquish my awesomeness at my job. I might have to give up being available for every meeting, every pow wow, every committee. I might have to be (gasp!) AVERAGE at my career for awhile while A is so young.
7. I cannot do it all. Wait. Scratch that. I can do it all, I just cannot do it all awesomely.
8. I am angry a lot. This emotion has been my tendency for a lot of my life. I have to remember that and begin to accept that I have no control over things, but I can control how I react to them.
9. No matter how hard today feels, tomorrow (or sometimes a few days later) ALWAYS gets better.

Nine things here. I am sure there is more, but I can't think right now.

Any insights you have to share, please leave them in the comments section.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Sleeping Routine

In response to Allison's post

When A was sick over Christmas, I moved the chaise lounge into his room and slept by the bed so I could be close to him and nurse him when he woke and as needed. I was picking him up every hour or two, and since he's been well, he continued to expect me to be there and he would wake every 1-2 hours at night and only took 30 minute naps for the last 10 days. I was drained to say the least. So I decided to implement some type of sleep routine for when he wakes in the night and for when he goes to sleep.

See how I am not calling it "sleep training?" I took in all the book methods and decided to do a bit of a hybrid approach to getting A back to a normal sleep routine. In no way am I advocating for anything here. I truly think that we know what is best for our child, and based on his personality, I decided to keep these things in mind:
  • A loves to suck. Pacifier would be a must for his routine. I will reevaluate this as he gets older, but for now, paci it is.
  • A gets very very worked up easily, so I need to be aware that and adjust
  • A hates a wet diaper, so if I believe that he is awakened by a wet diaper, I need to change it quietly and quickly in his crib and begin the waking routine.
  • A loves to hear me sing, so I will make sure that singing is involved in his routine.
  • If I hear the scary cry, I will pick him up no matter what.
OK. Before daylight savings time, A would go to bed at 7:00-7:30. Since the time change, he goes to bed between 6:00 and 6:30. I've tried to make it later but he seems to get tired and that time is our time. So, bedtime routine begins at 5:00 with a bottle of expressed milk, bath, lotion, songs and bedtime stories. Sometime he gets cranky and we can't finish the stories and songs, but for the most part, this takes us to around 6:00. Then I lay him in his crib, turn on the humidifier and sound machine (I have this one---I've had it for years to help drown out noise from the neighbors at our old place). Then I go and tuck him in, give him a kiss and his pacifier, sing one final verse of a song, and turn the lights off and I'm out. He'd sleep until 3 or 4 in the morning, and then I'd go in and feed him and he'd fall right back to sleep until 6 or 7.

He used to fall right asleep until the whole Xmas sickness thing, so now I add this routine:

If he cries, I go in after 3 minutes. I replace the paci, put my hand on his chest, and sing part of a song softly. He calms immediately, and I leave. If he cries again, I look a the clock and wait 5  minutes. Repeat the process. If he cries again, I wait 10 minutes. The hardest 10 minutes of my life. I go back in, repeat the process. And that's been it so far. I am lucky.

For the past few nights, he wakes at 7:00ish, and I check his diaper first. It's been dry, so I repeat the process. I'm down to the 5 minute mark there. He then wakes again around 10, and I change his diaper. Again, it takes two trips before he is back to sleep. Then I hear him when I am sleeping. Once around midnight, but he falls back asleep and is mostly just talking and chirping, not crying. He does this again at 2:00ish. Same as the midnight waking. Then if he wakes again (usually around 3:30 or 4:00), I'll feed him because that was our routine before the sickness. He eats then falls asleep until 6:00 or 6:30 when he wakes for the day. So, basically from the 10:00 check to 3:30 or 4:00, he is on his own and is fine. I am confident that this sleep routine will be back to normal again soon, but for now, this is what's happening here.

For the record, I struggled with letting him cry. I mean, I waited for this child for 4 years; why wouldn't I be with him as much as possible. However, I would rather he fall into a positive sleep routine now than deal with it when he is older. I even contemplated bed sharing, but that is not something DH and I want to do.

Naps have been a bit more trying. When I figure that one out, I'll post. We aren't very regular yet, so it's been tough.