Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Scheduling Through The Haze

Benny and I have been attempting to get sweet Hazel on a schedule that helps me not lose my mind. Eh, who am I kidding?... A schedule that helps both Hazel and me not lose both of our collective shit every day.

Upon the recommendation of several people, I decided to read BabyWise, although I had heard a lot of bad things about it. I decided that I could read the book and make a decision as to whether or not I thought it could work and would be healthy for Hazel. And her very tired, frustrated parents.

What I liked most about the BabyWise philosophy is that it emphasized flexibility so that we as parents could make a decision on what Hazel really needs. So, we instituted the plan Friday night. And let our sweet baby cry for 45 minutes. Or, you know... ETERNITY. And then... silence.




For a minute, we thought we'd gone deaf. It was bliss.

Bliss short-lived, but bliss nonetheless.

You'll have to forgive me, as having a baby has affected my temporal awareness and the days and times simply run together... but I believe that it was Friday night that I wasn't feeling well enough at the 10:15 feeding to actually drag myself out of bed and let the Lioness latch on. (Oh, yes... Lioness is what we call our sweet little Tweet because that girl has gone from sweet chirping as her nickname inspired... so a full-grown ROAR. Turns out that our little Tweety-Pie has got some LUNGS.)

So, Benny took matters into his own hands and gave her a bottle of (gasp!) formula and then literally hooked me up to the breast pump and had me pump while he fed her. What followed was 4 oz of breast milk from me, Hazel pounding 4 oz of formula... and then sleeping for 3.5 hours!! And do you people know what 3.5 hours - IN A ROW - can do for a new mommy? It's the equivalent of finding $20 in the back pocket of your jeans that you haven't worn for a few weeks... and then buying $20 of lottery tickets and hitting the JACKPOT.

It was THAT huge.

The next morning, I thought that we'd finally figured it out... and after only a month! Give her a bottle of formula at night and she'll start to get through the night eventually. By God, we've got it!!

And then reality came crashing through the roof of the house and landed directly on my face... because Sunday night, our little girl was gassy, gassy, gassy... and unable to pass it. In the last week or so, we've moved from co-sleeping (because while it was great for me, Benny was STRUGGLING with it and not getting any sleep at night), to having Hazel sleep in the Pak & Play next to our bed. She loved it. I loved it. Heck, even Benny loved it. But the big drawback to THAT was our little Lioness... well, she makes a lot of noises when she sleeps. Especially when she's trying to push a little hiney burp and it's not going well. While technically, she was still asleep, the noises that girl made all through the night kept both Benny and I wide awake. Every snort, grunt, grown, growl, burp (both ends)... we heard it. And worried about it. And we kept checking to see if she had spit up and was rolling in it... which is something the Lioness has been known to do. Much like wild lions that roll in their food. Another sign that our little one relates more to felines than the birdies outside her window.

To combat this problem, we moved the Pak & Play into the nursery on Sunday night. Not that there's really that much room for it in the nursery. I suppose we could have transitioned her to the crib, but I feel right now that it's still too big for her and wouldn't help her sleep. It's gonna be another couple of months, I think, before we put her in the crib.

But, I digress. Best night of sleep for both Benny and I in WEEKS. Hazel is still grunting, but until we hear her cry out in the middle of the night, we sleep soundly. In fact, last night when I put her down after HOURS and HOURS and HOURS of fussiness that neither Benny or I could soothe, she put herself to sleep for a good 10 minutes. And when she started crying, I made an executive decision that she still had 15 minutes before the next feeding and my breasts just weren't up to the task yet, and I let her cry. And what do you know? She either stopped crying or I fell asleep listening to it because I woke up 45 minutes later when I heard her cry.

Anyway, she's doing well with the Pak & Play in the nursery. She doesn't seem to mind at all. I think I'm more bothered by it than she is... but the good news is that I've got my bedroom back and am getting some sleep at night. Which makes me a better Mommy to Hazel in the morning.

We're still figuring things out, though. While Sunday was a good day, Monday night was pure hell for Benny and me. Mostly for Benny because I'd had enough of the crying and handed her over to him almost the minute he walked through the front door. Which is not what I want for him. Or Hazel. Or ME. I don't want to be that woman who dumps the child on the husband right after work. So, today I made a special effort to stick to the schedule as I believe is best for us... and when our Lioness started to get fussy around 4:30 and wanted to feed after only an hour, I jumped on that grenade and when Benny finally got home at 5:45, I had baby girl sleeping next to me with a binkie in her mouth.

It was pure genius on my part... and I was able to keep her down until 6:30!! And Benny got to come home to a non-crying child! Woot!

Hopefully, tonight's schedule will be conducive to a good night's sleep for all of us. Benny's rocking her to sleep as I write this and I think we'll be able to eat in peace and quiet for the first time in a couple of days.


greyhound said...

Your girl has lungs. YOUR girl? Who knew?

the Dread Pirate Rackham said...

heh. it sounds like you are totally getting the hang of this thing -- I knew you would!

Like you say - you gotta do what works for you (we too are a parent-centered house). If it doesn't work for you, it doesn't work. Good for you for taking care of yourself and your baby!

stronger said...

That cute little babydoll roars?? Adorable picture.

21stCenturyMom said...

She's adorable!

Schedules are for people who work or go to school. New babies need what they need and it sounds like you are figuring out what yours needs just fine.