Is This What Normal Feels Like?

Lady Jr has been in her own room – the office/nursery – for two nights. The first night went better than I had expected, but not as good as I had dreamed. I had to nurse her back to sleep three times. The first we tried to let her cry, but after 30min of intermittent checks, she was just too worked up. The second was the same result and even nursing and holding and sshing did nothing – she just cried and cried for an hour. By the third time I just went in as soon as she started crying and nursed her and that time she went back to sleep and stayed asleep.

She was up for the day at 6am. She then proceeded to take amazing naps. I don’t know if it’s related, but everything is related, so: her first nap was 1 hour long, her second was 2 hours, and her third was another hour. That just… doesn’t happen. Four hours of naps, guys. Who is this baby?

And last night – omg last night. It started out poorly. She went down just fine – literally 98% of the time she puts herself to sleep – but then around 10 she started crying and Lady couldn’t soothe her back to sleep. After half an hour she got me and I tried nursing her, but she popped back awake the moment I put her in the crib. Tried again and again and finally at 11, she stayed asleep.

She stayed asleep all the way until 2.30am. I went in and nursed her as soon as she woke up and she was back asleep pretty quickly.

Now it’s 7am and she’s starting to roll a little bit but she’s still asleep.

Yeah – that’s right. Lady Jr only woke up twice last night. Twice.

That hasn’t happened since literally January, maybe December. Holy shit. Is this how everyone else feels in the morning? Functional before coffee and actually awake after? This is amazing. I could go for a run. I already pumped and wrote two pages and edited a few more.

Two wake-ups is amazing. I’m cool with that.

Hopefully I didn’t just jinx it, but about time.

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The Big Move

April 2017

For the longest time I couldn’t even consider moving Lady Jr to her own room, aka my office. The thought of not being right next to her at night, of not being able to just open my eyes and watch her breathe, of not being able to grab her as soon as she woke up and started crying… it was just too much.

Well, that all changed this last week. Both Lady and I are now 100% (okay, more like 90%) ready to move Lady Jr out. Sleep seemed like it was getting better. Lady Jr was still waking up at 9pm ish, but putting herself back to sleep. Then she was able to go until 12am before she wanted food. Which is 5+ hours and way way better than where we’d been at.

But those times she was able to sleep that well were times I spent in the office. For five days I slept in the office part of the night and for five days Lady Jr had an increasingly easier time putting herself back to sleep and staying asleep.

On the sixth day, I returned to the bedroom. And Lady Jr woke up at 9.30 and cried. And cried. And cried. I tried to pretend I wasn’t there, but after Lady came in twice and tried soothing Lady Jr, I finally tried putting my hand on her. Then holding her. Then sshing her. Then, finally, feeding her. But she still cried. She didn’t fall back asleep until after 10.30. Later that night, she woke up again and cried for over an hour. The next night, she woke up at 4am and cried until 6am. That next morning, Lady and I looked at each other, bleary and exhausted, and agreed It Was Time.

Clearly, we were interfering with Lady Jr’s sleep, even by just being in the room. Last night I tried to sneak in at 9pm and somehow the creak of the door woke her up, when it never had before. We’ve noticed over the last few weeks that she seems more and more sensitive to us being in there. There have been multiple times when all it takes for her to calm down is for us to leave the room. The evidence couldn’t be much clearer.

We’ll need to completely re-arrange the office and move a bunch of furniture and then take apart and reassemble the crib and hope to All That’s Good that we still have all the screws for the crib somewhere and then (maybe?) set up the pack-n-play in our room in case we need to bring her back in, but. I don’t know. This might go exceedingly well. We also might end up bringing the crib back into our room. But we’re both agreed that if we don’t try now, right now, before the separation anxiety begins, we’ll have to wait six months or more. And we’re both so, so tired.

I don’t regret waiting this long to put her in her own room. We couldn’t have moved her before this, period. But she no longer needs to eat every 2-3 hours and she clearly has a strong sleep habit in the middle of the night where she thinks she needs us to put her back to sleep. She doesn’t. I’ve seen her put herself back to sleep more than a handful of times now. She just needs to learn the confidence to do it consistently.

Also this way if she decides to wake up at 3am and roll around cooing, she can do just that and I can sleep and not watch her, wondering if I should try to put her back to sleep or not.

We start this weekend. I’m worried and afraid but at the same time – quite hopeful. If nothing else, Lady stays up until 10pm most nights, so she can handle the 9pm wake up and I can get that much more sleep.

If anyone else has gone through the bedroom to nursery transition and has sage advice (or any advice [or extra coffee lying around]), I’d love to hear it. Or just encouragement. I expect this weekend will be rough.

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More Firsts

Lady Jr’s first solids – avocado!

 

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Lady Jr’s first Easter.

DITL April 2017

 

Lady Jr’s first microbiology book.

DITL April 2017

 

Lady Jr’s first time sitting on a picnic blanket in the backyard.

 

And Lady Jr’s first sweet potato, which she seems to like a whole lot more than avocado.

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Six Months!

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Six months?? Six months!! She’s no longer a squish, that’s for sure. She is a ham and a delight and I know I’ve been saying that since January, but omgosh every week she’s so much hammier.

She had her 6 month check-up this week. We have a 13# 4oz baby, which is somewhere around the 5th percentile (they marked 13# 14oz on her sheet and said 15%, but like, I watched them weigh her and that was not 14oz – also she’d been 13# 2.5oz the week before when she went in for fever/cold/rash). I think they also marked her height wrong, because she dropped from 70% to 50%. Oh well. It doesn’t matter in the long run, but she is a looong skinny baby and it doesn’t look like that’s going to change any time soon.

Otherwise: ear infection cleared up on it’s own, cough is almost completely gone, basically in one of her rare, non-cold instances and feeling 99% healthy – so perfect time for shots! Yaay… boo. Our happy baby quickly became unhappy, but I think we’re through the worst of it.

Sleep

…ahahah.

Well. She’s doing a few 2 hour chunks each night, but she’s refusing to go back to sleep unless nursed, which I have only been reinforcing because a) she was sick and had an ear infection for a week or so and b) my wife was sick and needed as much sleep as she could get. But now we’re on the other side of both of those, so we’re committed to soothing and letting her cry and *not* feeding her back to sleep every 60-120min. She’s six months old. She absolutely does not need to eat 6+ times a night.

But even with just getting those 2 hour chunks most nights, I feel 100% better. More like my usual self. I’ve been able to start organizing the house and even think about cutting down on some of the clutter we’ve accumulated since we moved and some of the clutter we brought with us and really shouldn’t have. Time is still scarce, so we’ll see how much I can actually get done.

So. Sleep currently looks like this:
7pm bedtime
9pm wake up, feed
11pm wake up, feed
1am wake up, feed
2am wake up, try to soothe back to sleep, feed
3am wake up, try to soothe back to sleep, feed
4.30am wake up, wide-eyed and bushy-tailed. Feeding does nothing. Usually goes back to sleep after 30-45min
6.30-7am wake up for the day

Blrgh. Not ideal, but still so much better than it was. I’ve mostly accepted our lot. Problem is, there’s no room for a backslide. If she does any worse than that, my day is ruined. So we really need to work on this, I just… listening to her cry at 12am is difficult.

Anyway. Enough about sleep.

 

Solids

The doctor encouraged us to start solids, even though Lady Jr isn’t really showing any signs of readiness – she can’t sit up unassisted, she’s not very good at the pincer grasp, she’s uninterested in what we’re eating, etc. I thought that was weird, so we’re compromising by making food available, but not forcing baby to eat it. We’ve put avocado in front of her twice now and she mostly mushed it around, but once she stuck her avocado-covered fingers in her mouth, so… progress?

Idk, I think I need to do more research on baby-led weaning, since that’s the approach I want to take. Just… how much mashing, how much purees, how much gnawing? Idk.

 

Stroller

But my favorite part about six months is we’ve been cleared to go running together! I ordered a running stroller off of Amazon last week (the week before?) and we’ve been… getting used to it while just walking. Man, strollers are such a different experience from baby-wearing. For one, she’s so far away. For another, I can’t feel her falling asleep or getting upset. There’s a little flap on top of the stroller cover to peer in, but I can’t see her face, so I still have to stop and go around to check on her.

She’s been… less than thrilled so far. She’s gotten upset both times I’ve taken her out in it. I assume all I can really do is keep taking her out on short walks, but I miss having her snuggled up next to me. But, alas, can’t run with a baby carrier. And I want to run with her…

Any tips on how to make the stroller less of a scary experience for a baby? It might just be that both she and I need to adjust.

What else, what else…

 

Milestones

She grabs for anything and everything and can almost always get it. She’s started reaching, too – reaching for cups and faces and cats. She wants to touch the cats, which is new. She seems interested in them.

She can turn the pages of a board book. We’re 99% sure daycare taught her this neat trick.

She just started rolling belly to back (again), at least at night, while she’s half asleep. I don’t think she knows she can do this, yet.

High-pitched shrieking. Yeah. Not enjoyable.

Can occasionally sit unassisted for a few seconds before toppling over, vs immediately toppling.

Has started rolling over and sleeping on her belly at night. Usually this turns into a longer stretch of sleep than usual.

 

And now that you’ve made it through all of that, have some pics:

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Daycare wanted a family pic, so…
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TBH Things are Pretty Good

I feel like I’ve been focusing on the negative a lot lately. Between the ongoing sleep issues and the fever and the perpetual colds and then the ear infection, it was just a lot. But that’s not a very good reflection of the actual day to day to day, which is overall pretty good.

Sure, I wish Lady Jr wouldn’t wake up before 7am and I wish she’d nap more consistently at daycare and sometimes all she wants is to be held for hours and hours, but damn. She’s cute. She’s adorable. She’s strong and persistent and stubborn. And her laughs. She has been laughing up a storm lately. She started by laughing a little whenever she saw us at the end of a work day, but now it’s all the time and I would do just about anything for that laugh.

So here, on the cusp of having a six month old, have a list of my favorite things from this past week:

– Lady Jr rolling onto her stomach and crying because she’s on her stomach, but as soon as we help her roll to her back, she just rolls right back onto her stomach.
– Rolling onto her stomach at night but then falling asleep that way.
– Falling asleep with her arms around her elephant lovey.
– The laughing, omg the laughing
– Laughing when we do kettlebell swings
– Confused laughter when we do push ups
– That laugh when Dr Lady hands her to me after bringing her home
– Laughing after she’s woken up from a nap
– Cackling together on the floor
– Laughing when I squat with her
– Laughing when we play peekaboo
– Grabbing my nose and trying to eat it
– Having the time of her life playing with my hair
– Creaking. Oh god, the creaking.
– Reaching for the cats
– All the times she fussed and fussed while I tried to put her down for a nap, only to roll over and fall asleep as soon as I left the room (*rolls eyes*)
– Opening the door to get her from her nap and the room smells like farts
– Cold-induced snores
– Raspberries
– Smiling until her pacifier falls out
– The wide-eyed stare of fascination in new places
– Basically, everything.

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Baby’s First

We’ve had a lot of firsts this week.

Baby’s first fever. Baby’s first herpes virus. Baby’s first ear infection.

But my favorite so far has been: baby’s first being the reason daycare put up an illness warning!

I’m sure every daycare does this, but whenever daycare knows something’s going around (i.e. highly contagious, wot), they put up a sign on the infant’s door. Last time it was upper respiratory virus. Now it’s roseola. Woo! Lady Jr gets to be patient zero!

I’m just going to ignore the fact that there’s no way she could have gotten that virus from anywhere but daycare for now. I’m not going to take that away from her. You don’t get to be patient zero very often.

The rash is already fading, of course. Under pressure from my mother and daycare, we ended up taking Lady Jr to the doctor yesterday morning. They confirmed that it was roseola and also diagnosed a very mild ear infection. We have an Rx for antibiotics, but we’re taking a wait-and-see approach and treating the pain with religious doses of tylenol.

Knowing that the reason for her screaming for an hour or two at night is because of the ear infection, though, is reassuring. Now we know (or at least have a culprit for) why she’s gone through these screaming bouts before during colds. I’m willing to bet this isn’t actually her first ear infection. Thankfully, most ear infections clear up on their own and antibiotics don’t really help with the pain. It just sucks in the meantime.

In conclusion, I would be okay if we took a short break from firsts for a few days.

…please?

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Not a Cold

It’s roseola! Woooooo.

I noticed baby had a funky rash all over her torso this morning, but her fever was gone and she seemed more like her usual self, so I sent her to daycare. Daycare called about an hour later and to say the rash was up under her chin and down on her legs, too. I mentioned that she’d had a fever and they said those two things seem to go together a lot and then said they’d keep an eye on it.

A quick google later and I have an exact match: roseola. So it’s *not* a cold. I was right. I mean, yes, it can be considered a respiratory virus, so maybe it falls under the cold umbrella, but it is not “just” a cold.

Anyway, apparently the tell-tale signage is that a mild rash will break out as soon as the fever goes away, which is what has happened. She should have stopped being contagious once her fever went away, so at least I don’t feel too guilty about leaving her at daycare. I just… there’s really nothing you can do for a virus except rest, and they’re doing a better job of getting her naps in today than all of last week, so. And after taking part of Monday and all of yesterday off, I’m kind of swamped with work.

And tired, but that’s a given. Aside from a 2 hour screamfest last night, Lady Jr (mostly) slept all right. I still don’t know what to do when she gets going like that. We cuddle, we nurse, we give her tylenol, gas drops, change her diaper, hold her, put her down, check her temp, repeat, repeat, repeat – but she’s inconsolable until either the tylenol kicks in or she wears herself out. This seems to happen with every cold and I suspect it’s a sore throat but she screams like she’s dying and it’s just so intense. But then she falls asleep and morning comes and everything is fine.

Anyway. Just thought I’d update, since cold+fever was actually not a cold. Oh doctors.

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