(Posted on new blog as well so please delete if you’ve received this twice!)
Just like when I was going through infertility treatments, I would browse the web and be amazed at how many people out there had the same questions and experiences I did, and even better, were talking about it. It was a daily source of comfort and it also brought me answers when I felt like I couldn’t find any.
Now, I’m still amazed at the communities of women who come together to talk about their babies. I specifically like the Babycenter website, and read a few forums: Teaching your baby and toddler to sleep (a current favorite), Got Twins?, and the babies born in the month of July, 2013. When I read these forums I fall hard into a world where everyone is talking about the exact same things, and I forget that it’s not on everyone’s list of what they are thinking and talking about.
Namely, I’m still talking about baby sleep.
I do think, overall, I’ve got it very lucky, and I try to keep that in perspective when things get occasionally frustrating.
Generally, my 14 week old twins are on the same schedule, and they each take 3 naps of 2 hours, 2 hours, and 1 hour, at the same time. Then, they go to bed around 7:00 following a trusted routine of bath, lights out, and bottle, and they wake up once during the night and sleep until 7:00 in the morning. In the past few days, we’ve attempted to take even more control over their night wakenings by doing a dream feed around 10:30. There have been no middle of the night feedings since we’ve started that.
B is a dream baby. I hate comparing my twins so I don’t, and I try not to let anyone else either, because if they do, they’ll quickly realize that B is easy, and C is a lot harder, making B the kid they want to hold and snuggle because they know he won’t fuss, and I don’t want those reputations to stay. It is what it is, and it’s really not that bad. But anyway, B no longer wants to be rocked before naps. Before bedtime, he only uses the rocking for a minute or two. I swaddle him up, bring him upstairs, turn on all the white noise makers (I may or may not have 3 going….), put him down wide awake in his swing (for naps), turn on the silent mobile, and after staring at the mobile for awhile he falls asleep, within 10 minutes or so. It’s awesome. At night, he goes in the rock n play with usually no issues. Two nights ago, that first night of the dreamfeed, he did wake up at 3:30, but I went upstairs, his eyes were still shut, I put a hand on his chest and rocked the rock n play briefly and back out he went. No picking up, no feeding. When he takes his naps, 99% of the time I wake him from them. He passes through his sleep cycles at the 45 minute mark effortlessly. He’s a deep sleeper and his sister’s cries don’t bother him. On the rare occasion he fusses a little before sleeping, it’s very brief and nothing more than a fuss. This boy so rarely actually cries I haven’t seen any tears in memory. Unfortunately, he currently can’t self-soothe because he won’t touch a pacifier and hasn’t really found a thumb yet. He’s just recently brought his hand up to his mouth at all. Luckily, he doesn’t really need to self-soothe at the moment so it’s not really an issue. Thank you, B. Regardless of what his sister does, I appreciate the ease at which this kid goes to sleep and has for many weeks now.
C is a bit more challenging, but this post is about appreciating the fact that I think I have it really good. A good amount of her sleeping issues are still related to reflux, and that’s not her fault. She spits up constantly. Many times it’s more than a little spit-up, it’s projectile, and we go through many bibs and burp cloths in a day. She has a permanent bib around her neck, and sometimes spit up comes hours later, clear, not even white. It can’t be comfy. The more she spits up, the more she cries, and the more she cries, the more she spits up. Even with all of this, I have to appreciate the fact that she keeps the same schedule as B does (with the exception of Nap #3 which is sometimes no more than 25 minutes long – which is frustrating). She does love a good rocking, but I’ve started trying to put her down drowsy but awake. It’s challenging, as she’s too young to cry it out, but at the same time, we used to rock her until she was asleep and all that was doing was making her wake up later, realize she was no longer being rocked and was by herself, and that doesn’t make her happy. She also can’t self-soothe yet, but I appreciate the fact that she is soothe-able. She loves a good swaddle, she loves her pacifiers, and she loves being rocked. She also closes her eyes and visibly relaxes right before sleeping if you rub her forehead, or even physically shut her eyes for her. With our dream feeds the past two nights, she also hasn’t woken overnight. She does stir and fuss starting around 5:30 am, but barely and it doesn’t require me getting up. When she first wakes up from any nap, she grins from ear to ear and starts to talk to you. She’s super alert and she watches your lips form words before she responds back, opening and shutting her mouth and rolling her tongue around.
As I sit upstairs, peering over the edges of swings and rock n plays so the babies don’t know I’m there but a giant mysterious hand replaces C’s pacifier 5,783 times and wonder why on earth she has woken up too early from a nap or bed AGAIN and ponder how to keep my sanity in trying to get her back to sleep….I read on the forums that some babies at this age wake up every half hour all night. Or still need 2-3 middle of the night feedings. Or will only take naps in the car…etc. Thank goodness those aren’t my babies. It doesn’t mean they won’t go through a stage like that, but I’m grateful that it’s not their normal.
This post is coming at a good time for me tonight, because for whatever reason, since putting them down to bed a little earlier tonight at 6:45 they have each woken 2-3 times, requiring assistance. I’m still dealing with the question of early bedtime or 4th nap, as they both woke from their 3rd nap at 4:00. 4:00-6:45 is a LONG time for 14 week olds…but tonight proves that sometimes an earlier bedtime isn’t better. I don’t have the answer, so until then, my husband and I will eat our dinners in a rush, standing up in the kitchen, bouncing a fussy baby who is overtired and cranky.
Other than that, we’ve got it pretty good 🙂
This little boy woke up a few mornings ago and decided to roll over, twice! He hasn’t done it since, but it’s a good start!
Working the puppy dog eyes.
When she smiles at you, it’s with purpose! So cute.