Saturday, January 29, 2011


We are back to cosleeping. I don't know how I feel about it, because my internal senses have been tainted by all the sleep training literature out there. What I do know is that Cupcake won't stay asleep unless we keep our hand on her chest. And since that can be exhausting on the crib, she's back to sleeping next to us.

Sometimes she seems like this tiny little thing can take over our entire lives.  I guess if its working for us now, its the right thing to do.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Sleep, oh the dreaded sleep

So its day two that Cupcake is sleeping through the night again.  Which is a tenuous thing to celebrate, because we are back to co-sleeping.  I don't mind the co sleeping all that much, but she had transitioned well to the crib, and we had made our peace with the baby gaining independence and ... well, I don't want to go through the separation again.

I now understand the CIO proponents a lot better.  Specially around nap time, when she refuses to sleep and cries, and everything I do doesn't stop her from crying.. well, six of one half-dozen of the other.  I mean, if she's going to cry anyway, it might as well be in a controlled setting as part of an overall parenting philosophy.

I don't know why she slept well the last two nights.  She napped horrendously, so she should have been cranky.  It took a while to get her down, but when she finally did, she stayed asleep all the way to 9:30 am.  She even went back to dream feeding during her overnight MCAD nursing sessions.  What gives?  Was it our awesome bedtime routine finally paying off?  Was it that she was just worn out?  Is it a fluke and she'll be back to being miss cranky pants during the night? Or, dare I dream, is this phase over?  The other mom in our baby group said they went through similar problems with their older ones, and that it too... shall pass.  They didn't really say how long it would take though.  I mean, I know it's a phase, no college aged person needs to be rocked to sleep, but will it be two weeks?  Two months?  Will anyone ever know?

Seriously, I have to remind myself sometimes that I love my child and I want to do this, and its ultimately very rewarding.  I don't know how nannies don't throw their kids out the window.

Monday, January 24, 2011


Cupcake seems to be teething. I say "seems" because no one seems to be in agreement as to what teething actually entails. I guess we'll know for sure once some beautiful teeth appear on her perfect little gums. Meanwhile, we are just left to figure out why our baby girl seems to have gone crazy.

Is she drooling? For sure. It's like every shirt has a new wet spot on her neck. And I'm frankly getting concerned for her skin. She already has a pimple on her chin. I really thought it'd be a least 13 more years until we had to deal with these issues.

Sleeping problems? You betcha. All weekend she's been taking these 15 -20 minute naps that she wakes herself in a total cranky mood.  And overnight she's all of a sudden regressed to ... I don't even know, she's always been a good sleeper, so I don't know where its coming from.  What I know is that we are ALL exhausted, her included.

Fussy & Irritable?  Why yes.  I don't think I've ever seen her cry so much short of the time she got her 2 month shots, and that time it was only for the afternoon.  This scream/crying followed by random fussiness and sporadic angry screaming has been lasting about a week now.  Its curious, she'll be okay when she's happy, which makes me question if she's really teething, but it really seems like all the anger is directed toward her mouth.

Rubbing her mouth?  Yes, she definitely seems completely fixated with having something in her mouth.  She constantly touches her cheeks and mouth, and will in fact wake herself up when she touches her own face.  Last night we tried some arm swaddling and it seemed to work, at least for a bit.

I feel very frustrated.  Cupcake seems to be distressed and in pain.  We have given her gripe water and acetaminophen, which I don't feel comfortable doing since I don't want to over medicate her.  But the acetaminophen seems to help her relax enough to sleep.  Is she upset because she's over-tired from not getting sleep?  Is the pain keeping her from sleeping?  Is she just overstimulated and has a hard time sleeping?  It's so hard to tell, but I'm getting a better feeling of why some parents choose to Cry It Out.  We've had only a week of this, and I"m already at the end of my rope.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


So Cupcake seems to be favoring an earlier bedtime.  I don't know, we can't really tell.  So far her bedtime has been closer to 11:30, with a bath and bed routine at 10:30, but I think we are ALL ready to move this a bit earlier.  Not too early, mind you, I still don't want to get up at 7 am in the morning.  But I was thinking of her going to bed at 10:30 or so, rather than sometimes at midnight.  Nate and I need an hour a day on our own too.

But nothing is easy.  Because of MCAD (and isn't everything because of MCAD), it makes it trickier to set up a schedule.  Mostly because I want to keep my sanity overnight and not have to feed her 1 hour after I've gone to bed.

So... I don't want to cluster-feed at night, because that's the time we are spending as a family and I want Nate to hang out with his daughter rather than me feeding her.  But just by virtue of the 3 -4 hour schedule, something has to give.

Currently her schedule is:  10 am wake up.  10:30 breakfast with mom.  1:30pm lunch.  4:30 afternoon snack.  7:30 dinner.  10:30pm dinner with mom and dad.  11:30 sleep.  2:3o am midnight snack.  6:30 am breakfast with dad.  And start the day all over again.

So... if we want to move her bedtime to 10-10:30.....  we could feed at 9 pm and then bathe her and set her to bed.  And feed at 12 am.  4 am - 8 am - 11 am - 2 pm - 5 pm 8 pm....nope doesnt work.  At some other point I need a 4 hour stretch.


9 pm - 12:15 - 4:15 - 8:15 - 12 noon - 3pm -6 pm - 9 pm    that could work, though I worry about the 8 - noon bit, she might gt hungry before that, since she wakes up at about that time....

9pm - 12am- 4 am - 8 am - 10 am - noon - 3 - 6 - 9... and the 4 - 8 - 10 are one boob only.... that might work.  Have a cluster feed in the morning....

Or 10 pm - 12am - 4 am - 8 am - 11 - 2pm - 5 - 8 - 10....arghhhh, this is still not really working.....

I find her max of 4 hours to be really frustrating

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Nap training

After Cupcake was completely cuckoo yesterday and the weekend, I'm getting a little worn out.  The other moms in our Mom Group say that their kids are/have gone through a similar phase around the 3 month mark, of hysterical sudden inconsolable crying, and this makes me feel better.  Still though, I'm a bit worm out from baby care.

So I decided to try the napping technique that the books recommend.  Set her down on the crib while still a bit drowsy, pat her stomach and sing a song, and leave her alone.  If she makes noise go back and pat her on the tummy again.  Repeat until she falls asleep.  I have absolutely zero intention of letting her CIO, it just doesn't seem necessary for my baby at this point in her development.  So if she cried, I would have woken her up.

But she didn't cry.  Instead, she called for me about 3 times, and I came every time.  She smiled when she saw me, and I patted her and sand her songs, and she held my hand on her chest.  And slowly she's get sleepier and sleepier, until the third time I left her she was completely asleep.  It was textbook, she did everything right.

She's such a good baby.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Nesting? or just anxiety?

Is there such a thing as postpartum nesting?  Because I'm pretty sure I have it.  All afternoon I've felt this weird anxiety, and this need to clean the house drawers.  Like if I don't clean the drawers the world i going to end or something.  Which it very well might, but I highly doubt it.

I don't know why I'm having this nervous sense of dread.  And it doesn't help that Cupcake has been acting on edge too.  I think we just feed off each other.  Has it really only been a week since we got back in town from the Holidays?  Maybe that's it.  A week ago today we were just getting re-acquainted with home, the schedule and the cold weather, and hanging out just the three of us.  And it the midst of it all she had her 3 month shots.  So maybe I should give the LO a break for being out of sorts.

She went on a screaming crying spree Saturday night, the likes of which I hadn't really seen before.  Poor thing, got freaked out when the people we were with started yelling at the TV while watching a game.  I should have followed my instincts and picked her up immediately, but my friend wanted to try rocking her.  By the time we got her she was pretty inconsolable, and cried/screamed for about 20 minutes before we were able to calm her down.  Lesson learned, Cupcake doesn't want random people holding her at football parties.

Maybe its the memory of last night that had me so anxious today.  Maybe its the fact that her naps were all over the place, including a super long 2 hour afternoon nap.  It worries me if there's something wrong with her.  I fear that she's having a weird reaction to her vaccine.

Which brings me to the real source of anxiety.  Dammed MCAD.  Always getting in the way.  Always in the back of my mind as something that we need to watch out for.  If she sleeps too much, seems fussy, is acting strange, I worry that she's getting sick, which could cause her to have a fever, which could cause an MCAD crisis.  And when my brain gets to this point, it freaks out.

Today I've been dealing with all of this by cleaning, something I never do.  Well, at least Cupcake's clothes are super organized again.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

baby earrings

So cupcake got earrings soon after her 2 month check up.  It seemed like the normal thing to do.  After all, she got earrings at her Baby Shower, and in Peru all babies get earrings as infants.  Ok, maybe not all of them, but most kids have earrings when they are babies.  I'm having doubts now about all this.  And I hate second guessing myself.

Its a cultural thing, I guess, I always thought it was better for the baby to have earrings when they are as small as possible, because they haven't developed nerves/blood capillaries yet, or a sense that they even have ears for that matter.

But then I went to our mother/baby group yesterday, and I felt strangely judged about it.  I dont know, they all commented that she had earrings, which ... yes, she does.  But it was a strange reaction of how cute, and she looks so adult now.  And I was like wha?????  adult?  Little gold studs on the ears is how babies look.  That's like saying that a baby wearing denim pants looks adult.  Which now that I think about it..... when they wear little adult clothing they do look adorable too.

I'm not torturing my baby for the sake of vanity.  I truly think that its better for them to have their ears pierced when they are little.  Less chance of infection, less pain, faster healing, less trauma.  I'm doing it for her, not because I want her to look adult.  If anything, I'm always advocating for a slow process to adulthood.   After all, whats the hurry to get your baby to crawl or walk earlier, where are they going?

Mmmm...  having lots of issues about all this.

It also kinda didnt help that one of the other moms, one that I thought looked youthful and about my age, make a comment about how she was older than me.  As if it was an obvious fact. And yes, she was 36 and I'm only 30.  But is it that obvious?  Are they really that much older, in such a different place?  Maybe I was just feeling defensive that day.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

sleep schedules

It feels that all the moms in our Parent group are talking about sleep training.  How to get them to sleep, how to nap, what schedule to have them in, what routine to set at night.  For a while I began to feel like we were doing something wrong, since we didn't really have any type of "theory" behind our scheduling and sleeping patterns.  Basically, I let Cupcake decide when she's tired, and then we put her down at night at 11:30 or so to sleep with us.  And you know, its been working.  But I was getting self conscious, were we fostering bad habits?  Why was everyone else so obsessed with sleep training and we didn't care.

Then I came to a realization.  THere are two things going on here.

1.  Cupcake is an awesome baby. She's happy most of the time, she doesn't cry, she's happy to lay on her play mat staring at her toys, she smiles at people, and mostly, she has no hangups about sleeping.  When she gets tired she begins to fuss, and I rock her and usually she's out within 5 minutes.  Sometimes it takes a few tries to get her on her crib or swing, and sometimes she will only nap if she's on my arms, but whatever, she's so good the rest of the time that I can indulge her if she needs it.  I figure there's a reason why she needs to be held, and I will address it.  So we've never felt that sleeping was an issue, so we didn't bother needing to change it.

2.  Most sleep training techniques are aimed at getting the baby to sleep through the night.  All the schedules, and cluster feeds, and self soothing techniques, CIOs, etc,  have as the ultimate goal a baby that sleeps 8+ hours on their own without needing nursing or attention.  That's fine and dandy, except thanks to Cupcake's MCADD we will not be having a full night sleep anytime soon.   We have to feed her every 4 hours at night, and usually we dream feed her anyway.  So her waking up at night hungry is a non-issue, we have 'till at least 6 months before we can start adding an hour per month to her overnight stint.  Seriously, besides the day the alarms didn't go off, I haven't had more than 3.5 hours of sleep in a row.  And curiously, the body adjusts.  But it does make me feel like the odd duck when everyone else is celebrating sleep successes and commiserating over sleep training frustrations.  It would be great to meet another MCAD mom to share the experience with.  Or any other FODs really.  I'm not really sure how to go about it.

If any of you find this blog, send me a message, it'd be great to meet someone else going through something similar.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Overslept at night

While were on vacation visiting family for the Holidays we had an unfortunate oversleeping incident.  Happily, it ended up having a happy ending.

On January 3rd, we were victims to the Iphone  clock glitch and the alarm didnt go off for Cupcake's 2:30 am feed AND the 6:30 one.   I guess that answers the question if she sleeps through the night.  Yes, she does.  She slept for 8 hours without as much as flinching.   When I woke up and noticed that it was after 7 am, I freaked out.  I had images in my head of Cupcake not responding, or having to take her to the hospital for a glucose treatment.  But instead, I picked her up and put her to my boob, and she ate, as if nothing had happened.

We called her doctor the next day (it was a Sunday), and she said that this is very reassuring, and shows how Cupcake is dealing well with her MCADD, but to still feed her not more that 4 hours apart just to be on the safe side.  After all, we can't know when her body is passively fighting an infection and burning more calories.  So... even though this was fine, it shoudl'nt happen again.

As soon as she started eating, I began to cry.  Its so exhausting, having to think about the ramifications of feeding her on schedule.  The fear of what could happen.  And what it means that she slept for 8 hours and nothing happened.  Did we get lucky?  Does this mean her MCADD isn't really symptomatic?  What gives?