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My Boy, 5 Weeks Old – Opinions Please

I’ve heard it many, many times before how quickly this time passes you by when your children are infants and my oh my I can’t stress how true that is!  I can’t believe it’s been so long since I’ve had two hands free to post a blog either!  Our little man is now five weeks old and while I have only really gotten out of the house for his doctor’s appointments (he’s gaining really well and weighed in at 8 lbs, 11 oz on Tuesday!), I was able to escape the house with my little man in tow to meet Lynn and Tasha for coffee – and of course MariLynn came along with her new lens :-)

 

It was GREAT to get out of the house!  I was a little anxious not knowing how he would handle being out and about because he seems to be lacking in some much needed long day time naps which causes him to be a cranky mister.  I didn’t know how I was going to be able to handle him if he started crying too much if he was to become overstimulated if he didn’t fall asleep.  The three of us gabbed away 4 hours and I couldn’t even believe it!  What I couldn’t believe most of all is that you will notice that it’s day time and we have a sleeping baby on our hands :-)  He slept the whole time and woke for feeding twice and was back fast asleep.  I thought I would enlist the advice of many of your seasoned Moms out there who have any advice for me.  Any advice is appreciated :-)  

If any of you follow me on Twitter, you may have noticed I’ve been tweeting a bit about my little peanut’s sleep “issues” that occur during the day time.  For some reason, he just doesn’t stay asleep in the day time for any longer than an hour and most especially he will usually wake if he is put down.  So basically I have to hold him nearly all day long other than for his activity time when he wakes up from his short naps and is interested to watching his mobiles etc. which is really for only a very short time. (This would be when I’d burn through the kitchen trying to fix myself a snack or something! lol)  Most of his day time nap lengths range between 20 – 45 minutes when they should be between 1.5-2 hours of consolidated sleep.  He’ll awake after a short sleep cycle and wants to be back at the breast.  So rather than feeding every 2-3 hours during the day, he wants to eat every hour or so.  I’m starting to wonder if he’s developing into a day time “snacker” but I think it’s more likely that he then tries to pacify himself (back to sleep), but on me!  It’s really tough because it now seems like he cannot go to sleep unless he is at the breast and must be in a deep sleep for me to swaddle him up to put him down, otherwise he will spring back awake!  The only time he’s every fallen asleep not in someone’s arms (he has fallen asleep a few select times while someone else was holding him), was driving in the car.

Night time is not a problem (thank heavens!) as he will stay asleep and only wake for his feedings and that is tough enough on it’s own :-D.  But during the day, when you have a baby on your hands who doesn’t like to stay down for his much needed sleep, you get a cranky little mister and a mama who can’t get any rest during the day either!

I feel so conflicted about his nursing to sleep “issue.”  I say issue because the only reason it raises concern to me is because I’m hoping that we’re not developing a negative sleep pattern that we’ll have to break down the road (i.e. that he’ll “need” to nurse to sleep for much longer than these first few early months).  As a mom, I want to give him what he needs and he tells me what he needs by rooting.  I simply cannot/will not deny him if he’s communicating to me that’s what he wants/needs.  I get some people telling me “oh that’s not good” and others telling me “it’s natural” and not to worry that it won’t last (I really like this answer!).  I’ve also learned that there is, in fact, a substance in breast milk that makes the baby sleepy, so when you think about it, it does seem natural that he would want to sleep after feeding where he’s all cozy next to mom and where he can soothe by suckling (the only thing he can really do at this age).  I also experimented introducing a pacifier to him and he wants no part of it.  I never thought that I would want him to take a pacifier, but now I wish I introduced it to him EARLY.  I’m beginning to think that if he were able to soothe himself to sleep/while sleeping, we might not have this little “issue” of his short day time napping and consequent shorter feedings.  I can’t really figure out why it’s different at night though – night rhythms perhaps?

The Baby Whisperer book was given to me by a friend which tells you that your baby should follow the “E.A.S.Y.” routine (i.e. Eat, Activity, Sleep, You).  Essentially, feed the baby when he wakes up, change his diaper to wake him up after the feed where he’ll engage his awake alert activity time, then when he’s showing signs of fatigue, put him down for his nap where you’ll have time for “you.”  Sure!! Sounds great in “theory” but my baby is more of a “E.S.E.A.” kind of a fella who wants to eat/pacify in between everything!

So my bloggies and wise resource of expertise and advice, please enlighten me when your advice and/or experience on my little “situation” I have.  The Mom in me thinks it will pass as he grows a bit older, but the psych major in me worries about the habits and patterns that we are developing.  What do you think?  Please enlighten me if you have had any experience with this at all :-)

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