Experienced Moms

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woelfelyojo6's picture
Joined: 01/15/09
Posts: 52
Experienced Moms

Hey Ladies-

So I am having a tough time connecting with the February BB Mamas. I am just addicted to my June Mommies I guess.

So I hate to take up your toddler minds with a baby question...and since most of us suffer from pregnancy/infant amnesia you may not even remember - BUT....

Ok, so Eloise is awesome. She is laid back and rarely fusses too bad. She is already on a fairly predictable schedule and now that my nipples dont feel like they are going to either burn off or fall off...nursing has become SUPER enjoyable with us (amnesia strikes again b/c I did not remember being in that much pain with Liam for so long)

ANY-WAY....She will sleep just fine during the day for her 3 long naps in the swing or her crib. I usually wear her at least once b/c I just like her company/smell/little breath but overnight she is only sleeping out of my arms about 3 nights a week. I have gotten her to sleep in her crib unswaddled for a 3 hour stretch and a 5 hour stretch. She has slept in her swing a handful of times swaddled in her swing for 3-5 hours overnight, too.

Sometimes she wants nothing to do with the swaddle and sometimes I can't get her to do anything unless she is swaddled. I guess its just a matter of finding the right fit (at the right time, too??)

Do any of you remember your LO's sleeping in your arms over night? How did you transition them out? Did it take over the course of some time or was it sort of like...ok, now he/she is in the crib??

I am also thinking temperature has to do with it. We literally were 70-80 degrees for a week then got snow 2 days later. The nights she slept the longest on her own our house was really warm b/c windows were open and it was hot and humid.

Any suggestions would be most appreciated. I do nurse her in bed and we nap together when I can get that in (like 4 times in her short little life) and sometimes I do her cluster feeding in bed so I can get in some reading and we fall asleep together....usually DH puts her in the swing or crib when he gets home if he finds us like that.

I know that consistency is key - but I will literally do the exact same thing every night
1. Nurse during cluster feedings (not always in the same place though)
2. Diaper change/swaddle before she hits up the last boob (usually 2 hours to the minute after she starts her cluster feeding)
3. Nurse one last time in chair in front room
4. Try swing and go to bed
if she wakes in less than an hour I rock her back to sleep and try crib
if she wakes in less than an hour I nurse then try crib or swing one last time
if she wakes in less than an hour after than I set up shop in the recliner in her room and she usually goes 5 hours or so sleeping that way.

Other than that she usually sleeps for more than 3 hours wherever I put her but its just SO inconsistent.

Anyway, thanks for reading and any advice you can give. Maybe I am just expecting too much from her too early? She is only 5 weeks today.

babyJtime's picture
Joined: 05/23/05
Posts: 682

Your little Eloise sounds like my little Maria! Wink

She slept attached to me for who knows how long! Well, she still sleeps in my bed with me too, so I'm not much help with the transitioning stuff! I know at about 2 months, I tried to put her in a bassinette, swaddled but she had a really crappy sleep so back with me she went!

She is still new so I don't think the extra snuggles need to change yet!

ekcanada's picture
Joined: 05/06/09
Posts: 1707

I love how you come back to us! I think I wil do the same, even though I really like my Sept 2011 board!

No advice because you are now more experienced then me!

If this baby comes out as bad as Hayleigh was, can I have Eloise?

April777's picture
Joined: 10/01/08
Posts: 579

Jo, I think she just needs time and consistency. She's still so young, and at that age I think the happiest place for a baby is in Mom's arms. I am not any sort of expert on making a baby a good sleeper, because I never have had one of those. :rolleyes: Zoey's always been pretty bad. But off the top of my head, the only problem I see with what you're doing is that you're sometimes cosleeping, but then expecting her to sleep on her own. She gets used to being close to you and I think it would be natural for her to crave that when she's sleeping independently.

The best luck I had with Zoey's sleep was cosleeping until she was 4-6 months old. It was the only way she would sleep long stretches which, for us, were usually 3 hours max. But I believe in cosleeping with a newborn and I know your DH really doesn't like that. So...I don't know what to tell you. I would at least try to keep some form of consistency. Eventually it's going to just click for her. If you always have her nap in her crib for instance, or always have her sleep overnight in her crib for instance, she will eventually be comfortable in there. She may wake frequently and not have long stretches of sleep for a week or two, but I do think with the consistency of it she'll get the hang of it really fast.

Some babies can go back and forth between solo and cosleeping just fine. Zoey never could. Maybe it's hard for Eloise too?

I know this wasn't much help. I should never give sleep advice because really, I have the world's worst sleeper here. 7 times last week in one night she was up. 4 the next night. So maybe you shouldn't listen to me! haha.

harmonybear's picture
Joined: 06/06/07
Posts: 639

It is my firm belief that there are three kinds of babies, when it comes to sleeping: 1) those who sleep well without any help/training; 2) those who would not learn to sleep well on their own, but who will learn to be good sleepers if you take the time to teach them; and 3) those who won't sleep well no matter how much effort you put into getting them there.

There are a few from group 3 on this board ;-), but the majority of children can learn to sleep well, I think. Still, at 5 weeks you can't expect her to sleep very long at all - especially when you're nursing her. She'll probably need to nurse at least every 2-3 hours, so sleeping that long is perfectly normal for this age. And depending on how long she's spending nursing, she might only be able to sleep for an hour sometimes before she needs to eat again.

I think it's perfectly fine to let a baby sleep in your arms or even on top of you for the first three-four months or so. There's nothing developmentally wrong with that, it helps with nursing, and it also helps regulate baby's body temperature and breathing. And, of course, most experts don't recommend sleep training until the baby is 4+ months. So anything before that should, IMO, be designed to get everyone the most sleep possible.

As for us, A slept on me for most of her first year. I don't recommend doing that, but it was the only way we could get her to sleep for longer than an hour at a time some nights. She still sometimes sleeps on me, but she's doing much, much better (especially now that she eats solids, but that's a different issue). But I think A and Zoey and Maria are the exceptions as far as sleep goes, and not the rule. Most likely you'll wind up with a good sleeper - it sounds like you're doing all the right things.

AimeeLynne's picture
Joined: 09/29/08
Posts: 572

Miles slept in a bassinet(at night) and a PNP(naps) for a while when he came home. He only slept 2-3 hrs a stretch, little piggy always wanted to eat! When he was taking his naps when he got to the point he didn't want to be swaddled (which was early he would always pull his arms out) we rolled up two receiving blankets put one on either side of him and it I think he almost felt like someone was there next to him. That of course didn't last long because he's a crazy mover when he's sleeping, but maybe it would help her by fooling her into thinking she's still in your arms?

Girlandi's picture
Joined: 10/29/07
Posts: 49

We co-slept with both girls for the first 3-6 months, because that was how they slept best. Neither of our girls were big fans of swaddling at night, and it was easier to just hold them because then they had the feeling of being held (obviously), but they didn't have to be swaddled. We did it a bit odd though, since the person sleeping with the baby was out on the couch all night. When we got tired of it they were already used to sleeping for most of the night, and all we had to do was transition them to the crib/pnp.

woelfelyojo6's picture
Joined: 01/15/09
Posts: 52

Thanks so much for all the advice, its one of those thigns where I feel like I already know but I have to hear it from others. She did well last night....she went 2 hours swaddled in her swing to 1 hour in her crib, then nursed, then another hour in her crib on her own. At 4:00 when I went in there to nurse her I fell asleep in the chair with her and we both slept until DH brought Liam in @ 7:00 a.m.

I will just keep plugging away and thanks again for all your advice.

April777's picture
Joined: 10/01/08
Posts: 579

"woelfelyojo6" wrote:

I will just keep plugging away .

I think at this point it's all you can do! :bigarmhug:

Remember one thing--the babies at this age that are sleeping 5-6 hour stretches overnight, or who seem to be doing better with being independent--they're not the norm (wish they were though!). Eloise is. She's right on for her age, and you're doing a great job!

marymoonu's picture
Joined: 03/15/08
Posts: 2183

Calvin has slept in my arms every night since he was born, so I'm NO help. :rolleyes: I've just gotta say I'm sooo jealous that nursing has turned around for you. My nipples are still so horribly cracked that I can't even nurse him. I even tried a shield and it still hurt. Starting to think I'm just an EP'er...again. Sad

woelfelyojo6's picture
Joined: 01/15/09
Posts: 52

"marymoonu" wrote:

Calvin has slept in my arms every night since he was born, so I'm NO help. :rolleyes: I've just gotta say I'm sooo jealous that nursing has turned around for you. My nipples are still so horribly cracked that I can't even nurse him. I even tried a shield and it still hurt. Starting to think I'm just an EP'er...again. Sad

I know you are bummed about this but there are a lot of advantages to this
1. he will probably get BM longer than us nursers may last. Liamed weaned himself so early and my supply @ the pump SUCKED!!
2. Your DH can feed him overnight every once in awhile giving you a break
3. Its easier for you to go out and about (I am scared to nurse in public so we do it around her schedule and its a pain b/c I go to the car when she needs to nurse)

I could think of a million other reasons but I am so stinkin tired I can hardly type and Eloise is in party mode tonight she is just smiling and making baby noises and refusing to sleep! AHHH!!! She has been up for almost 2 hours...c'mon kiddo!!

I need to get my pump out! I have been saying it for weeks now. I just hate that thing! It took away all my social time @ work, it is a pain in the a$$ to clean, I have to do it at least 3 times a day to get enough for the 2 bottles Liam would take while I was at work and I NEVER had more than 12 oz in the freezer which made it so nerve wracking when I had to decide to use them (overnight, so we could go on a date, etc etc)

I am very envious of EPer's. My BFF since kindergarten went that route and stopped pumping when her DD was 8 months and had enough milk to make all her baby cereal and keep her nice and chunky for almost a month after her 1st birthday. I would have given anything to be able to provide Liam with BM after 8/9 months.

OK, I digress!! You are awesome. I am tired!

April777's picture
Joined: 10/01/08
Posts: 579

Mary, honey, don't be hard on yourself AT ALL! When did it become about the delivery method? The important thing is that you're feeding him breastmilk. Regardless of how he's getting it, seriously pat yourself on the back. Nursing is VERY easy (aside from nipple issues or mastitis). You can nurse anywhere. But pumping is VERY difficult. You can't walk around the grocery store and pump. But you can walk around the grocery store and nurse. Pat yourself on the back. Anyone who is willing to pump, which is a laborious process in and of itself, deserves lots of praise. Don't you forget that. :bigarmhug:

marymoonu's picture
Joined: 03/15/08
Posts: 2183

Sorry to hijack your thread, but you guys made me feel so much better!

I keep trying to remind myself of the positives, and being able to have DH help me is a huge one, especially once I go back to work. And in the end, my #1 goal is to get him the BM (liquid gold!), so I'm trying not to beat myself up over it. I nursed him for 23 beautiful and excruciatingly painful days... I'll try it again once I've healed more, but if it never happens again, I'm about 80% at peace with just pumping. I'm sure I'll eventually get to 100%. For some reason, with Sean I was so proud of it and saw it as an accomplishment... But this time, I can't help but think of it as a failure. I'm trying to get back to that previous state of mind, but it's hard getting to that point, probably because I haven't totally given up on the idea of nursing him yet. We'll see. I'm determined to have a "success" story one way or another, I'm just waiting to see if it is as a BFer or an EPer.

The "supply" issue is another positive. I don't know why, but my supply is so much more abundant when I pump. I guess because I can allow myself to produce more than what he eats, whereas when I was EBFing him, I only made what he ate, because I wasn't pumping at all. Which is perfectly fine if I got to stay home with my baby all the time, but since I have to go back to work, it is just "easier" to pump.

I have been concerned about wanting the "bonding" that comes with BFing... But it was to the point where I dreaded feeding my baby. I cringed when he started rooting around... I've realized over the past few days that I no longer dread when he's hungry and actually look forward to providing my milk to him, even if it's from a bottle. I'm sad it hasn't turned out the way I wanted it to, but maybe this is really just what's best for us. It worked last time, and as they say, "if it ain't broke, don't fix it..."

Anyway, thanks girls for making me feel a lot better about our situation. Smile

April777's picture
Joined: 10/01/08
Posts: 579

You really should feel good about your situation, because you're giving your baby the best. And also, a happy mom is a happy baby. If BFing was that painful and stressful, this is the better option.

The good news is he may not have any nipple confusion and you may be able to resume nursing if you choose to. Zoey's first bottle was soon after we got home from the hospital and she never once had nipple confusion. So you never know, when you feel better if you want to try again it may be a piece of cake.

As for bonding, my friend formula fed exclusively and I'll tell you, they have an amazing bond. I think love is love and attention is attention. He feels a bond with you no matter how you feed him.

JackieJ1's picture
Joined: 02/18/09
Posts: 24

"April777" wrote:

You really should feel good about your situation, because you're giving your baby the best. And also, a happy mom is a happy baby. If BFing was that painful and stressful, this is the better option.

The good news is he may not have any nipple confusion and you may be able to resume nursing if you choose to. Zoey's first bottle was soon after we got home from the hospital and she never once had nipple confusion. So you never know, when you feel better if you want to try again it may be a piece of cake.

As for bonding, my friend formula fed exclusively and I'll tell you, they have an amazing bond. I think love is love and attention is attention. He feels a bond with you no matter how you feed him.

DEFINATELY! Pumping is HARD. I had to pump and only made it a month and then went with formula. We still had an amazing bond either way. The important thing is that he is getting what he needs! You're doing a great job Mama!