I can’t believe I haven’t posted in over 3 weeks. I feel like I have so much to say and no time to write it all down.
A year ago today I took that test that turned out to be positive. I think I’m still somewhat in shock that I’m here now, with a successful pregnancy behind me and a 3.5 month old baby. At New Year’s last year I wished that by the next year, we wouldn’t recognize our lives. In some ways, that’s true… but at the same time it’s almost like I recognize my life more now this way than I did before. Like this is the way it’s been meant to be for many years now and it’s the way we were that was the unrecognizable way.
Since the last time I posted, FrostedBaby has:
– vastly improved the use of his hands. He’s grabbing things and getting his thumbs in his mouth and loves to manipulate objects, although his fine motor skills are lacking and he’s not always able to do exactly what he wants, but he’s working on it. I’ve taken the blankets out of his crib (we used to wrap him in a small flannelette one) because he’s started moving around a bit and will reach down and pull it up over his face. I don’t think it’s thick enough to smother him, but I’d rather not take the risk or be worrying about it. He is able to flip it off his face, but unless his hands are under it, he sometimes can’t quite move his hands and arms in the proper way to get it, so better safe than sorry.
– been laughing and smiling lots! It’s not quite that awesome baby laugh, but it’s getting close and a few times it’s been right on. He’s gotten really smiley with everyone now, instead of just occasionally. He’ll smile for other people, but he almost always gives his biggest grin when he sees me, which is obviously adorable.
– we’ve put him on a bedtime routine and a nap schedule and that’s been helping a lot with him actually napping during the day and going to bed at a predictable time at night. I think the two of them are working well to get him to sleep well and not get overtired so he can’t sleep. After reading some stuff on sleep, I realized that some of the stuff we were doing was actually overstimulating him and making it hard for him to fall asleep, rather than working his energy out and making him sleepy like we thought. It was making him sleepy, but not helping him sleep. Things like his playmat or being overly interactive with him and that sort of thing, probably the TV can do it too (which explains why he was more fussy in the evenings when my husband is home than when I’m by myself – because I never turn on the TV). So now we’re more mindful of what we’re doing and when we’re doing it, and I’m attempting to somewhat follow the idea of the Baby Whisperer stuff, where they should follow a routine of eating, playing, sleeping at predictable intervals. So far it’s been working really well and for the past week he’s been in bed and usually asleep by 9 (aside from one night that he had a lot of gas and was fussy) and he’s been taking several hour-long naps during the day. For bedtime, we start it at the same time and do some quiet things with him, like snuggling in the glider or walking around (Daddy does this part usually), then he gets hungry and I feed him in the glider in his room. If he’s not sleepy after he’s finished eating, I rock with him. Usually I put him down either if he fell asleep on me, or if he just seems tired and he’s generally asleep within a few minutes of going down. Same with his naps, I try to do some quiet stuff with him about 10 minutes before I want him down (I aim for an hour and a half to two hours after he wakes up that I want him to nap, or if he’s showing signs of being sleepy, like rubbing his eyes) and then put him down and again he’s usually out within a few minutes. I only go in if he actually cries, or to replace his pacifier in his mouth (he doesn’t necessarily need it to sleep, just sometimes needs it to wind down) and then I leave. Sometimes he smiles or laughs or wiggles excitedly when he sees me, but I just put his pacifier in and walk out, which is actually really hard because he’s just so darn cute. I’m lucky he’s a good sleeper on his own. Occasionally he screams and won’t go down and then I don’t force it if he’s too upset, I just try to calm him down again and not force the issue. At this point I don’t feel that crying it out is for us because if he’s crying like that, he needs me. Which is of course really frustrating too because sometimes I can’t quite figure out what the magic thing is that will help him, but at least he’s not screaming and upset all by himself. (obviously other people have different babies who have different needs, etc, but that’s where we are right now)
– We went on a several-day trip to Michigan to visit my mom’s family! We’d been trying to visit since he was born, but between us being busy and relatives there being sick and all, it never worked out. Last Wednesday night my mom phoned me and said she and my dad had decided to go the next morning, would I like to come with them. I figured I would never end up going until spring if I waited, since the weather will be turning soon, so I packed our bags (packing is such a pain with a baby!) and went to my parents’ that evening, and we left really early in the morning the next day. FrostedBaby was a total angel the whole time we were away – cheerful and friendly. I think in part it was that I inadvertently started the bedtime routine that we continued after I got home since it was working so well (I’d just been reading about sleep and babies during the day before my mom called me) but he’s just generally a pretty cheerful kid. We were also doing a fair bit of driving around, so he got to nap frequently and that definitely helped. It was a nice visit, and now my relatives know that it’s not just Nana bragging about her perfect grandson, it’s all true!
– He slept for 12 hours the night we got back, though hasn’t repeated it since. While we were away, he was sleeping longer and longer, which was a really nice break from the up every three hours if I’m lucky stuff (I’m okay with being up, I just hate that it takes me a while to get back to sleep so my actual sleeping time is really reduced). He’s all over the place right now, between four hours and 9+ hours. I have no idea why. At least he’s going to bed predictably now (knock on wood!) and isn’t up for a long time and is taking naps. When he was up every three hours and then not sleeping during the day and staying up til midnight some nights, I got no breaks and was ready to kill myself.
And now he’s up from his nap so I need to post this and run!