I’ve been trying to think of something to write here for the past few days, but I’m drawing a blank, probably due to sleep deprivation. Here are some random bits:
* Cate is four weeks old today. Her one month checkup is next Wednesday, and I’m trying to remember to write down everything that I want to ask the pediatrician, because otherwise I think I’ll probably be so tired that I’ll just walk in and be all “errr… duh?”
* I met up with my friend Janet for lunch yesterday, just to get out of the house for a couple of hours. (Cabin fever is starting to get to me.) I took Cate along with me, and she was absolutely delightful. She didn’t fuss in her car seat, she slept while I ate lunch (imagine! A whole meal! With no interruptions!), and she cooed and was generally adorable afterward. Janet is 36 weeks pregnant, and I think the exposure to my completely charming baby girl made her feel a little less nervous about her own impending motherhood.
* Janet also recently took a class based on the book “The Happiest Baby on the Block.” She got the DVD with the class, and burned a copy of it for me. (Cat, I know you said you were going to mail it to me, but now you’re off the hook.) I didn’t think that very much of the DVD would apply to us, since Cate isn’t the type of baby to cry for no reason. I guess we’ve been blessed with an incredibly mellow child. But the author does promote the idea that his little techniques can help babies sleep longer, which sounded awesome. Cate wakes up hungry every three hours, and I’m so exhausted from the constant sleep interruptions that I feel like I’m losing my mind.
Well, I watched the DVD, and now I can say with absolute authority: suck it, Dr. Karp. I did all of his little techniques to get Cate to sleep longer, and she still woke up hungry every three hours. Hmph.
One of my cousins (on my dad’s side – no relation to anyone who reads this site) suggested that I slip a little rice cereal in with Cate’s formula in her nighttime bottle to get her to sleep longer. For any of you moms who bottle-fed your babies: is that normal? It’s not something I had ever heard of. But I’m going to ask the pediatrician if that’s something we can try, because the idea of getting a solid four or five stretch of sleep sounds like absolute heaven.
* Back to that whole cabin fever thing: remember that I joined a book club a few months ago? Even though I haven’t read a single book or been to any of the meetings yet? Well, they’re meeting tonight, and I don’t even know what this month’s book selection is, but I think I might go anyway, just to get out for a little while. Besides, they’re meeting at Whole Foods, and picking up some organic mac n’ cheese while I’m there sounds pretty good.
Sorry the DVD didn’t help. For us it was a lifesaver because Elizabeth screamed and cried for a few hours every evening her second or third week, and the techniques turned it off just like a switch, the way he says. But she has always been a really good sleeper so we didn’t have to work on that.
I have heard of using cereal in the bottle, but I’ve never heard of anyone doing it younger than 4 months. Your doctor will have a better idea of whether it’s a good idea, and maybe how to get her to sleep longer.
I know it’s really hard to be sleepy all the time, bt just remember– eventually, she WILL sleep through the night.
I thought it was 4-6 months too, but this cousin said she started the rice/formula mix for her little boy (who’s now 3 years old) when he was only 5 weeks, per her pediatrician’s instructions.
I know from my mom that I was started on solids early too, because I couldn’t ever stay full for more than an hour or so. I thought maybe it was a different set of rules in the 70’s, but now I’m wondering if maybe Mississippi pediatricians just have their own standards.
Definitely talk to your doctor about the cereal thing before doing it. I’m a breastfeeder so I don’t have much experience with things formula-related, but I’m *pretty* sure I’ve read that adding cereal to formula should only be done to combat reflux and only at the direction of a doctor. It’s an old-wive’s tale that it will help the baby sleep through the night.
The sleeping will get better soon, honestly. Hang in there!
Formula is already more difficult for babies’ bodies to break down than breastmilk is — adding rice cereal at this point is not going to help with the sleeping department. Plus, it’s messy and a pain to put in the bottle (have to make the nipple hole bigger, mix it properly, etc.). If she doesn’t have reflux, it’s not going to help anything. Maybe she needs a few more ounces in her bottle during her nighttime feedings?
Or, you know, she’s just going to wake up every three hours. Rough on you, I know, but they do outgrow it.
I think we need a new picture or twelve of Cate upon which to feast our little eyes!