Saturday, May 7, 2011

The Shots, the Sleep & the Schedule

I do not like shots.

I don't mind them much for myself but for my girls... I HATE them.
First off watching their sweet faces coo right before makes me feel so guilty, like my smile is tricking them, they have no idea it's coming. Then I have to see their poor little faces turn bright apple red and hope they catch their breath again from their silent squeal.

There is a calm in between, they sleep for the next twenty-four hours a lot! But then comes the storm, the fevers. They both get fevers and both get incredibly fussy and both cry & cry & CRY.

We had a tough week with the girls after Mondays 4 month shots. Lilly weighed in at 12.11 1/2 that's 6 lbs that she gained since birth, Rose weighed in at 13.7 that's 6 1/2 lbs that she gained. They are doing great! After the shots though.. it's a different story.

I struggled with them not sleeping through the day through out the week and their nights fell apart from lack of sleep through the day.

They had been doing decent, as they would sleep from 8-9pm to 5-6am, I moved their bed time up cause they were obviously tired & slowly their wake up time was changing from 5am, to 4am, to 3am... 2am... then one night I got them to bed a bit late and Lilly woke at 12am. I knew at that point it wasn't hunger waking her it was that no one was holding her that bothered her. She would sip on an ounce of milk then pass out in our arms, drifting back into sweet baby dreams like she never fully woke at all.
I decided to let her Cry It Out (CIO) the books and most places online CIO shouldn't be just leaving them in their cribs and never returning to tend to them, but to continue through the night entering their room to soothe them back to sleep. So as a means of a transition we would go & just soothe her or Rose (who rarely would wake).

It worked pretty well at first but again slowly backslid to us constantly in their room soothing them.

Then the shots came, they didn't sleep well which made their night pretty bad then the next day their sleeping was worse and then night was a disaster. Lilly cried for HOURS. It was terrible. She sounded like she was in pain, in fact she sounded like Rose within her first few weeks of life because of reflux. Lilly always seemed to have some reflux but nothing like Rose. I mentioned the nights hardship to a few nurses and work who after some questioning determined she had reflux too. So I asked her doctor, who conveniently is my boss as well (easy access) who also felt Lilly's minor reflux was peaking and started her on meds too.

The next day tho I fought them to sleep, and realized I just DON'T have a set schedule for them. If I gave them consistency I knew happy snoozes were on the way. But I had NO idea where to start. They kinds made their own schedule as I followed their cues, Rose slept more Lilly always seemed hungry. I never came up with a schedule, especially for two different babies. After an afternoon of fighting them to take an after lunch nap for THREE hours I did what any normal mama in my situation would do. Cry. BUT THEN! I sent out for help from my sisters and best mama friends.
Thankfully they each were quick to respond to my cry for help, each had different & similar thoughts.

You know what I love LOVE about these women as I probably mentioned before? Is that they don't say, 'this is what you're doing WRONG' in no way did I ever get a put down but praise and encouragement, they gave me examples of their own experiences/schedules and knowledge and from each of their amazing words my husband and I came up with our plan of action.

I was with them on Friday and decided it was the best time to start, no one else would have their hands in the mix that day. It's AMAZING how receptive they are to a schedule, to ME calling the shots. Well I mean it wasn't perfect, they fussed and cried when they had to stay up & fussed when I laid them down.
I changed two things when I laid them down for naps, I said, 'It's nap time, sleep well' & 'I love you' kissed them and left, the second thing I did was not go back.

They did great the first time, after there was some protest. I was determined for their own good and for them to sleep again and to see them happy I would have to do this. I looked at the time and knew I had an X amount of time till I can get them, till then they can sleep, whine, fuss or cry but that was their nap time, & with knowing there was no going back to check on them constantly & feeling like a failure when they wouldn't sleep from my soothing, I just did things that needed to be done for a long time.

I cleaned, I washed, I napped, I ate.
It's incredible how these simple things feel like giant obstacles far worse than a giant ball rolling towards you in a cave- Indiana Jones' couldn't handle these adventures.
In fact I expect the greatest of praises & a medal if possible, I'll even accept a trophy when I tell someone what I accomplished in a day these days. Especially from my husband, its usually not ecstatic excitement I get but he totally gets it when he is watching the girls alone.

Day 1 with their schedule did wonders, they slept like champs that night from 7-6:30am. Getting that daytime sleep was the perfect antidote for a nights rest.
Day 2 turned out great too! Even better with Daniel home.
We are so thrilled to see them happier and feeling like we all have structure.

Only thing is I can't just go out whenever, my life now revolves around their schedule. I barely made it out today to see a friend for her birthday, I don't think we even spent a half hour there :/
but social life is second now and I'm okay with that. I love being a mom!!
& my friend will be a mom soon and will soon lose her social life as well... lol kidding Ann!... not really..

This all may still be premature saying it's perfect, but it feels that way now!

I am so thankful for my family & friends. God truly places the right people in my life.