Archive | June, 2014

Four-Month Sleep Regression

26 Jun

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I had never heard of it until it started happening. Since the end of May David has been sleeping 12-hour nights, usually waking once in the early morning to eat, and taking two two-hour naps with a short 30-45 minute nap in the late afternoon. He still can’t stay awake longer than an hour and a half during the day. He turned four months on June 24, and I think that was the day he started taking 30-minute naps every time, which ended in crying, and he started waking up a lot at night. I haven’t fed him in the nighttime (except that 5 a.m. feeding) in a long time so it didn’t even occur to me to feed him all those times. I just soothed him and he would go back to sleep for another hour or two. It was weird and horrible.

Because I thought it was interesting that he would start crying while seemingly still asleep, I googled it and found a lot of talk about “four-month sleep regression.” (Also a lot about night terrors but this I dismissed.) I was kind of relieved to know this is normal and he is freakishly on schedule for it, but upon further reading I realized it isn’t a phase, just a permanent change in the way he sleeps. No more easy baby sleep. Now he sleeps like a grown-up (more or less) with REM and everything. AND, the icing on the cake, he has to learn to wake up a little and put himself back to sleep every two hours, all night long. It’s not fair to call it a regression, obviously, when it is more of a progression, but I think it is going to be really tiring for all of us for a while.

My baby’s getting so old.

His bedroom is quite dark and there is a fan in there for pretty loud white noise, which is why his naps got so long I think. Last night in there he started crying about 45 minutes after falling asleep, was awake and fussy for like five minutes, and then fell back asleep on his own. (I watch him constantly on the video monitor. I just think he is so cute. I can’t put it down. Josh will tell you.) Two hours later, same thing. It took longer for him to fall asleep that time because he kept curling his legs up and then falling asleep and they would fall down and jolt him awake. But he was not really crying much. I didn’t hear him again until 6:25. He usually wakes up to eat when Josh starts moving around, or sometimes a few minutes before Josh’s alarm goes off. :)

He has been napping now for 59 minutes, the little darling. I am glad because he has seemed really, really tired the past few days!

Oh, but what I forgot to say above is that while it didn’t previously occur to me that he would be waking up from hunger, I am going to try feeding him in the night sometimes if he doesn’t fall back asleep within a couple minutes. Sometimes he doesn’t nurse very well before bed because he is too distracted, and there is always the chance that he’s in a growth spurt or something. And I don’t think I should be expecting a teeny child to go 9-12 hours without eating just because he can!

Also, he is getting quite close to rolling over. He rolls onto his side all the time. So we will be phasing out the swaddling, which seems like cruel timing because he is going through this sleep thing.

So many people told me when I was pregnant that once he was born I would not get a decent night’s sleep or sleep late in the morning for twenty years. One man said thirty years. But with the exception of this week, I have been getting tons of quality sleep for months because Davy has, too. So I feel pretty lucky overall, and who knows, maybe he will beat this thing and be an excellent sleeper his whole life. Maaybe.

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2014 West Virginia Trip

11 Jun

I’m not great at photojournalism. When I took my boy to CA I forgot my camera altogether, and on our recent trip to WV I mostly left it in its case in our room. What pictures I did take are mostly of the baby! I’ll share them as I go along. Some are from Joshie. As I described in my last post, we drove to Minneapolis with Danielle. While there I had to be sure we ate at Chick-fil-A. Here is my son at Chick-fil-A:

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5/23

We also went to IKEA and looked at chairs for David’s room. We figured he was ready to start sleeping in his crib, but since his room had no chair I would have to bring him back to my room to nurse if he woke up in the night. Too much work! So we thought we would get a certain gray wingback and we toyed with the idea of putting rockers on it. The plan was to return to IKEA for the chair after the West Virginia leg of our journey. Sadly this did not come to pass, and his room is still chairless. But it doesn’t matter yet. Keep reading to find out why! On Saturday we left Minneapolis for Pittsburgh by way of Chicago. Here is David on the flight to Chicago-Midway:

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Zzzz

He is still really easy to fly with. The plane knocks him out every time.

In Pittsburgh we were met by my in-laws, and Josh’s sister and her three kids. Then Josh’s other sister flew in with three more kids making us a big, crazy group. It felt like my family ten years ago when all the boy cousins were still kids and all the get-togethers were hectic and fun. In other words before we got old and boring! It was great seeing my nieces, Taylor and Lylah, and my nephews, EJ, Isaiah, Noah, and Easton. Everyone had changed pretty drastically from two years before. And we had not met Easton yet! We all drove in two cars to Josh’s parents’ home in West Virginia.

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5/25 the next morning

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5/25 I don’t always, but when I do

David was accidentally (well, unwittingly) sleep-trained (and nap-trained) while we were visiting my in-laws. I began putting him in the bedroom alone for his naps just because there were so many people around, and he immediately was able to fall asleep on his own. And because it was so dark and white-noisy he began taking two hour naps two or three times a day. He also fell asleep in there by himself in the evenings and only woke once in his always 12-hour night (after eight or nine hours). I could not believe it, because previously he had been falling asleep in the evenings with me and Josh, usually in the living room, waking a few times a night, and sleeping about 30-45 minutes at time during the day. Here he is in Easton’s pack-n-play:

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5/26 down for the night

Since we’ve been back at home, he takes naps in his own room and goes down for the night in there, to be transferred to the rock-n-play (cradle type thing) in our room when we go to bed. We like to have him with us when we’re sleeping because of his coughing and gagging. Which you will learn about presently. :) I may be precipitate in calling him fully sleep-trained because he does still depend on being swaddled.

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5/27 lunch on the Ohio river

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5/27 with Mama’s foot

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The weather in West Virginia was amazing compared to North Dakota and the scenery was beautiful. This next picture is the view from my mother-in-law’s front porch. We had moved the patio table out to the tree for some shade one afternoon. I loved sitting out there relaxing with the relatives, and I think David liked being in the fresh air, too.

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5/29 Fog

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5/29 Fog

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5/29 Texas shirt

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I think this is a talking smile

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This is the inhale on a sneeze!

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5/31 Lylah and Easton. Easton would not be still for a picture, no doubt because he would rather have had me changing his pee-diaper. Sorry, buddy!

We went to the zoo in Wheeling, WV one day. It was called the Good Zoo which I thought was a little arrogant but also not very ambitious–you might as well call yourself the Great Zoo at that point? But it was named after someone named Good. It was nice to walk around outside with the babies in strollers. We began the day with a little train ride:

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6/01

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And then people who were brave enough fed the llama and goats:

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6/01 Lylah

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6/01 Taylor

By that night David and Josh were very congested. We assumed it was just allergies, but lying on his back made David choke so we propped him up in our bed to sleep.

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6/01

There was so much car seat time on this vacation that I started to feel really bad for the little guys. David hates being restrained, and loves sitting straight up or standing (supported). He gets really restless in the car, like his dad, and everywhere we went was pretty far away!

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6/02 in the car

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6/02 in the car

One night I actually took out the real camera and got some shots of the boys together. If you leave your baby with me, he will end up swaddled! But not until he betrays a tired sign or two. They happened to both be using their white blankets and Nuk pacifiers, which made me think to take a picture. Or a few. Taylor was helping me by trying to get them to smile, but they were both pretty mellow by that point.

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6/02 cousins

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6/02 cousins

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Easton: Isn’t my sister hilarious? David: Meh.

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Feel free to print and frame. ;)

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6/02 cousins

Josh’s mom drove us back to Pittsburgh and we stayed the night there before catching a flight back to Minneapolis.

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6/05 flight to MSP

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6/05 baggage claim MSP

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6/05 Minneapolis hotel

The following day we made plans to go to IKEA for our chair and some blackout curtains for the boy’s room, and in preparation we moved David’s car seat to the opposite side of the car so we could fold down half of the back seat. A few minutes later we were on our way, and almost immediately got in a fender bender when another car ran a red light and hit us. We were so glad we had moved David because we were struck on the side he usually sits on. Everyone was okay except our Mitsubishi, which I feel emotionally attached to now because it might have saved a few lives, self-sacrificially. Not only the three of us, but the man in the little car behind us. The driver who ran into us was only 16 and had been driving for two months. It was a 45 mph zone and I think she was going pretty fast, although we weren’t because we were turning. As the driver of our vehicle I feel pretty responsible, too! Although I wasn’t at fault, a little more vigilance might have allowed me to prevent the collision. And with my baby in the car! You can’t imagine my guilt. David cried as soon as it happened but when I got him out of his seat he was fine. (Probably very glad for a chance to escape his car seat for a while. He was immediately looking around with interest.)

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6/06 an hour after the accident

We had to leave our car in Minnesota and drive a rental home. (No IKEA chair.) We are still waiting to hear if it’s totaled.

I am just so relieved and grateful that Josh and Davy were not hurt. What would I do without either of them?

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6/07 happy to be home

On Monday I took him to the doctor to make sure he was ok after his adventure (he is fine) but mostly for his horrible congestion which only got worse as our vacation went on. We had given up on the hope that it was allergies, and sure enough he has a virus that we just have to wait out. It is frustrating because he can’t really have any medicine, being an infant. It has decreased his appetite but also wakes him up, interrupts him when he’s eating, makes him spit up more, etc.

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6/10 Ida

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6/10 Ida

Ida has always been great with kids I babysat and she has shown that she is good with the baby too. Her purring is as good as any fan while he sleeps, but she is also very tolerant of him when he kicks her and pulls her fur with his toes–she just moves out of reach, eternally patient. (I admit, I sometimes harass her with the baby to see what she will do.) But she doesn’t avoid being around him, which is nice. I thought maybe she would try to leave home when he was born. Tom is more selfish, and will ignore the baby in your lap in his attempt to get close and cuddle with you. He just jumped up as I was typing this, and landed on the baby before he was shoved mercilessly back to the floor. He is also the one who sleeps in David’s crib if he can access it, which is annoying and hairy. I still LIKE him, but I wish he would be a little more mature about everything. Ha!

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