Sunday, November 21, 2010

He is a real boy!

Joshua never cried while he was in the hospital.  Seriously.  I was starting to think that maybe the part of his brain that controlled crying was damaged and that he couldn't cry.  I would ask the nurses "Have you heard him cry?" and they would say "No actually.. he is a very good baby".  He was also so used to getting his feeds on a 4 hour schedule that even when he was allowed to demand feed, he pretty much sat on the 4 hour mark.
That is, until he came home and realised he was a real boy!  Clearly he decided he needed to make up for lost time and would cry ALL. THE. TIME.  He also wouldn't sleep, (at night that is...  he did sleep during the day to start with) and was waking up every hour or so.  I ended up sleeping in the loungeroom with him.  I realised that he was used to the sounds of the hospital, which was never totally quiet or totally dark, so I kept the TV on, and gradually made it quieter until I was able to turn it off.  I spent several nights "sleeping" on the recliner with him on my chest because as soon as I'd get him to sleep and put him down, I would go and lay down myself and he would start crying again.     I always said when I was pregnant that the thing that worried me the most about having a baby was the lack of sleep.  Taking care of a baby didn't bother me, I'd done that plenty, but those babies always went home at the end of the day and I got a full nights sleep!  Sure enough, it was the hardest thing about having a newborn.  And it seemed like I was the only one who could settle him, so although Rod would try sometimes, it was short lived.  By the time he was 3 weeks old, the decent day time sleeps he was having turned into naps of 40 mins at a time, and he was still getting up every 1 to 2 hours during the night.  I was EXHAUSTED.  He screamed everywhere....  we'd take him in the car and he would scream so much he was red in the face and covered in sweat.  We went to a friend's wedding and out to dinner and it was awful.  He was one high maintenance little dude and I pretty much felt like I couldn't go anywhere or do anything for fear of having a screaming baby.   Otherwise though, he just seemed like a normal baby.  (Some "normal" babies are a pain in the bum too, I know!)  He seemed to be really colicky, and I started trying things like gripe water to try and help him.  I also ordered a book called "Save our Sleep" by Tizzie Hall.  It has routines for babies from Birth to age 2 with the ultimate goal of getting them to sleep from 7pm to 7am.  At this point, I was willing to try anything to get some sleep.  I started using her routines when he was 5 weeks old and the changes in him were almost instant.  Instead of screaming all evening until I finally got him to sleep late at night and went to bed myself, he was going to sleep at 7pm.  He was staying asleep until I went to do his dreamfeed before I went to bed.  He was only waking 2 to 3 times a night to feed (which is tons better than every hour!!)  He was still only sleeping 40 mins at a time during the day and he was still a whinger when he was awake, but things seem better when you are getting some sleep!  I was also beginning to think that he had reflux.  He seemed to be in pain, would pull off the breast screaming and arching his back.  Then his "voice" started sounding croaky like he had a sore throat and I was convinced then that it was reflux and that the acid must be burning his throat.  I decided that I would bring this up at our six week check up.    

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