Friday, January 30, 2009

Mashed Post-ato Friday

I apologize for the trite headline but this post is going to be a mash-up of several topics that aren't worthy of their own posts. Yes, I guess I'm exhibiting the Judging part of my ENFJ personality.

So, after a supremely fussy/clingy/generally pissy day on Tuesday, I was convinced we were in the throes of a 6-month growth spurt. I was bracing myself for a week of misery. But to my pleasant surprise, Nate woke up completely refreshed and was all smiles Wednesday morning. He began using my fingers as teethers and as he glided the tip across his bottom gumline, I felt a sharp, pointy stranger where a knot used to reside.

His first tooth had erupted (as I illustrated for Wordless Wednesday).

I shrieked with surprise and excitement and he smiled pompously, as if he knew what he had just sprouted and knowlingly affirmed "there's more where that came from, Mommy".

Nate's 6-month appointment was on Tuesday afternoon. My boy is 18 lbs, 2 oz and 27.5 inches long. His growth has slowed down a bit but he is still in the 70th percentile for weight and 80th percentile for height. Perfect physically and developmentally. Because his 4-month shots were delayed due to illness that lasted the entire month of December, he was spared from further vaccinations until mid-March.

We were given the green light to start solids so we introduced rice cereal - mixed with pumped breastmilk - that night. He tolerated it commendably and adeptly swallowed more than he spit out. But he quickly grew tired and began gagging on the soupy texture. After several spoonfuls, he was clearly full and disinterested in continuing the process.

Don't worry - I took more photos of the event than I would like to admit. They'll make for a perfect Wordless Wednesday next week. *wink*

After a few more days, I may introduce oatmeal and see if he favors it over the rice. But I probably won't pull out my trusty Beaba BabyCook for homemade fruits and veggies until after we make our move. *sigh*

Nate hasn't pooped in 4+ days. I understand it is normal for a breastfed baby to go for days without a bowel movement but we're talking about the kid who had monster blowouts 3-4x a day for more than 5 months. It doesn't seem normal to have a sudden, drastic change in bowel patterns. Even the rectal thermometer isn't stimulating things.

Please tell me my son hasn't inherited my awful IBS/chronic constipation.

Tomorrow, I think I'll send DH out to pick up some 100% prune or pear juice. From what I understand, it's like an enema in a bottle. I can't wait to see what fun this shall bring.

It's about time for another CIO report.

Bedtime has been fairly consistent since my last post. Nate has pushed up his bedtime to 8-830pm instead of his typical 9pm. Sometimes, he seems ready around 7 or 730pm, which saddens me if I've been at the office all day and don't return home until 6pm. On those days, I have to squeeze cuddle time and playtime into one hour. Just not enough. But once I see the signs of fatigue (rubbing eyes, yawning, attention deficit, general malaise, desire to nurse from both sides, etc. ), I retire to his room for a quick nurse and glide in the dark. I sometimes softly sing or hum a lullaby while I stroke his head. I should note that I rarely nurse him to sleep anymore. Instead, I unlatch him (or he unlatches himself), lay him in his crib awake with his beloved blankie and kiss his forehead, while reciting "nighty night". I leave the room and shut the door behind me.

Sheer silence. I don't hear one peep out of him as he first puts himself to sleep. *knock on wood* What an amazing transformation from just a week ago, when putting him down meant enduring hours of aural assault. It's a welcome improvement.

But he's still waking every 2-3 hours, almost to the minute. It's more out of habit than out of hunger, so I allow him to fuss for several minutes before going in to comfort him. Most times, he can fall back asleep on his own within 10 minutes. If he doesn't, a quick pat by Daddy or another quick "top-off" from Mommy will do the trick. But if he does in fact go back down, he is only down for another 2 hours or so before waking again and crying. It gets progressively more difficult for him to self-soothe as time goes on and usually by 4-5am, he is back in bed with us so we can all get some uniform rest for the last hour or two before waking for the day. We've had one or two 4-5 hour stretches, but those seem to be the exception rather than the rule.

I thought he may have been waking due to the winter weather, as his hands are often chilled when I go in for checks, but even on warmer nights or in fleece sleepers with a cotton onesie underneath, he wakes often. I also suspected the snow and hail falling on his bedroom window could have disturbed him, but he wakes even when the atmosphere is still. I've considered shopping for a sound machine but I'm not convinced that will solve the problem.

I'm beginning to accept that, like adults, every baby's habits will be different. Some are going to be naturally "good" sleepers - STTN at a mere "x" weeks old - and others will need more assistance to get to that final destination. My son happens to subscribe to the latter.

That being said, naptime - which used to be dreamy - has gone to H.E. Double Hockeysticks. He never used to put up much of a fight when I would place him in his swing at the 90-120 minute mark. But now he retrieves his gloves and starts boxing the moment my hands are removed from his back. It takes several attempts to get him down, despite displaying explicit signs that he is weary from being awake for 4+ hours. And even if we're lucky enough for him to give in, the shuteye only lasts long enough to be a catnap. Today, he napped a cumulative 30-40 minutes, as opposed to the usual 3-4 hours. I'm assuming this is due to teething and am hoping it will pass.

All I know is Mommy needs sleep if she's ever going to fill these empty boxes. Have I mentioned I hate moving?

Until next time...


Kim said...

Sounds like he's doing great!

Half of a baby-lax usually does the trick for us. Pears usually help move things along, also.

I hope something helps!

sacredandscarred said...

Teething can also change the poop pattern. TTG went from once every 2 or 3 days to about 6 times a day, and is back to usually once a day now. Exclusively breastfed.

Road Blocks and Roller Coasters said...

I've noticed the exact same thing with naps. Lemy was never a great napper to begin with, but she fights me now more than ever despite her obvious exhaustion. She also wakes frequently too. Ugh. I'm hoping we are on the road to recovery, but I'm not holding my breath. May we all get sleep soon!!! :) ((HUGS))

Rachel said...

The extra iron in the rice cereal may be the culprit. Any type of fruit juice should help.

As far as the sleeping, I found the LG slept (and still does) better when we put him to bed earlier. I know with working that is hard, but 7:15 was his magic time for several months. Around 10 months he could make it to 7:30 but any later and he would wake up at night. Now at 14 months he goes to bed about 7:45 and if we get him to bed later he usually does fine.

Every child is different when it comes to sleeping, and you will figure it out. You are just a week or two into your new routine, so a month from now things will be much better.

countingpaisley said...

Just wanted to share..

My kiddo is an every four day pooper. Our pediatrician said to skip cereals all together and to start with fruit and veg. We are doing pears and it has really helped him. So even if you don't get the juice, trying pears or prunes as a food might help, when the time comes. And of course if your pediatrician agrees. Mine just said that the rice really binds them up.

sara said...

I love the detailing of your post it's fun for me to read and to see what's ahead! Thanks for sharing and for stopping by :-) I'm glad he's doing great!