What a different week we have had.
This past week has been just what we all needed. If you read last weeks blog you’ll know I did some bassinet settling with Casper which turned into him self settling to sleep. This has honestly been life changing. I knew once we got to this stage it would be but I didn’t realise just how much our family dynamics needed it.
My back is no longer aching, Otis has so much more Mummy time which has made him really happy, Paul isn’t as stressed trying to juggle working from home & helping me with the boys, I have more time to do things around the house which lowers my anxiety and Casper is so chilled out and is sleeping beautifully, his sleep isn’t being disrupted by dinosaur noises.
Spending more quality time with my first born
Being able to spend so much more time with Otis has brightened my zest. I have missed playing and just cuddling him so much. Now every time Casper is napping Otis has my full attention. We cuddle, we wrestle, we go outside. It’s just the best. I feel connected with him again. I’ve noticed his behaviour has improved too. He’s not so emotional and sooky because he’s getting the attention he craves.
Having more time throughout the day
Having more time during the day means I am able to prep dinner, throw washing on the line and just generally keep the house much more tidier. Trust me it still looks a mess most nights but it’s no where near as bad as it has been for the past 10 weeks. For me having a tidy house calms me. I hate mess and it gives me a bit of anxiety when things are scattered everywhere or there’s crumbs on the floors. Having the time to do a quick clean up throughout the day has made a big difference I’m my moods.
I’ve even been able to do some baking! I got on the home made bread band wagon - which mind you is so easy to make and my first loaf turned out pretty good!
Consistent days with our baby's sleep
Our days now have a pretty consistent rhythm to them. Casper is catnapping (only sleeping one sleep cycle) which is normal at his age but yes frustrating - no one is immune to a cat napping bubba haha. I tackle one nap a day where I resettle him. Sometimes I can manage two but I always do one. This is usually the second nap and if I can do the third then I do that one too. His last nap of the day is always in the baby carrier whilst out for a walk before dinner time. Late afternoon naps are not hormonally supported which means often a contact/pram nap is needed for them to be able to sleep.
Casper’s still doing four naps a day and this will go down to three in the coming weeks as his awake window stretches and he starts to consolidate his sleep cycles.
He hasn’t yet linked a sleep cycle on his own. He tries but can’t quite get there so I’m helping him. The first few days it would take a while to get him back to sleep but now it takes generally less than ten minutes. It’s all about consistency and patience. I know he will get there!
This so what our days look like -
First nap - 45 mins
Second nap - 45 mins and a resettle (I always resettle the second nap)
Third - 45 mins
Fourth - 30-45 mins (this is always done in the baby carrier whilst out for an afternoon walk)
Bedtime between 6:30-7:30pm
Dreamfeed - 10pm
The dream feed is working perfectly now. I do it at 10pm and this means he wakes around 3-4am for a feed then we start the day between 6:30-7:30am. He is still having one or two unsettled nights due to his digestive system but it’s nowhere near as bad as it was. I feel so sorry for him when I hear him squirming and grunting. A breast feed and some cuddles usually settles him back to sleep though.
Doing consultations with families again
I officially re opened my appointment book this past week. I have been taking on a few clients here and there for the past month, just feeling my way back and figuring out how to juggle working with two kids. Paul is an amazing help. He will either have the boys or if I’m doing a consult at night he cooks dinner for us (under strict instructions of course because he’s a terrible cook haha). I am loving being back working. I’m extremely passionate about all things sleep and supporting families, especially Mumma’s so it’s been uplifting seeing beautiful families reach their sleep goals and be a part of that process. In such a weird and uncertain time it’s nice to bring stability and happiness back into families lives. It doesn’t happen often where you are literally housebound so why not work on your bubba’s sleep whilst you have no events on or feel pressured to go out and about.
Monkey see, monkey do
We had our first swear word from Otis this week. Monday morning I carried on like a pork chop over a huge huntsman in our kitchen sink. Paul, who is terrified of spiders had to man up and ‘take care’ of him. Usually I catch and release the spiders that visit us but this was in an awkward spot - plus is was huge. Anyway, as Paul ‘took care of him’ with his sneaker he yelled ‘fuckng hell’ and Otis then said ‘oh fuck’. Paul and I did what we always said we shouldn’t do.... we laughed. We just couldn’t help it. It was so funny! Luckily he hasn’t said it again but I’m sure it’ll happen and we will make sure we don’t laugh this time. It’s just so hard not to laugh at what kids say sometimes! They are hilarious little humans.
Things are starting to settle down
I have found things have really settled down now. The first 8 weeks of having a new baby are hard. They changed rapidly. Just as you think you have them figured out bam it’s all different. The first two wonder weeks can be pretty full on too as a bubba starts to develop and get more and more used to the world. I still believe baby wearing for the fourth trimester can mean a much more settled bubba (and Mumma). It eases them into the world. It helps develop a strong bond between you both and ensures bubs gets the sleep they so desperately need without the battle of getting them to sleep, transferring to bassinet and running the risk of that waking bub up and having to start all over again.
Creating bad habits
You cannot create bad habits in the fourth trimester. Hold your baby. Cuddle your baby. Feed to sleep. Rock to sleep. Do whatever ensures they feel safe and connected (whilst also maintaining your mental and physical health too of course) - it’s not just about a baby, we need to think about the Mumma too.
Thank you for reading this weeks blog. If you’ve had a sweating toddler on your hands I’d love to hear the story or stories haha. Comment on my latest post and share what happened. Surely I’m not the only Mumma who’s child has said ‘f#$k’.