Almost 11 Months

What’s new with my lil’ man? Lots of things!

Primarily….walking-ish, not napping and lots of kisses.

Shoulder kiss action:

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Mobility. M is up, down and all around these days. He can practically run when pushing the ottoman around the basement and loves to stand and cruise around. He isn’t standing or walking on his own yet, but it can’t be too far away. He gets more and more confident everyday.

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With that confidence comes more accidents. Poor M gets hurt more these days as he’s learning to crawl fast and walk. We saw blood for the first time last week when he bonked his lip, and he got a goose egg bump on his forehead after laughing his way into a windowsill. It breaks my heart when he gets hurt, but these are all accidents that just come with the territory of learning to move.

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Playing. It’s really fun that now that he is mobile he can really play with other babies. He and Henry played chase, and it’s fun to watch him interact with his friends. Most of his local playmates are older than he is and he has gotten bit, hit and slapped in the face recently! Most of the time this is over the sharing of toys. Poor M.


Talking. I don’t really want to proclaim that Mazen has said his first words yet, but he is working on them. I’m not really going to count mama and dada because those are givens (he says DADA very clearly for Matt these days!), but we are very close to getting a true “dog” and “cat” out of him. Right now they are “duh” and “aht” but there is a connection. He also said a very clear “EGG” the other day, but I’m not sure it was a real word with meaning.

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Teeth. We have four prominent upper teeth and still just two on the bottom. The worst is when he grits them together! It makes an awful sound, but I have no idea how to discourage that. Teeth brushing has started…at least for practice. My ped said to just get him familiar with the toothbrush for now. He seems to like it and giggles every time.


 

Naptime. Since sleep training M has been a stellar napper. We’ve been on a really predictable and wonderful schedule of naps at 9 and 2 for 1.5 hours each (roughly) for MONTHS. It’s been awesome. Just this past week M has started to fight naps. He rarely cries for more than a minute when I put him down, but lately he has been really screaming. So much that I wondered if it was separation anxiety or a fear of something. After getting in the crib with him (that was fun!), I ruled those out. I think he’s just transitioning to dropping his morning nap. It’s just happening in a way I wouldn’t have expected. He has missed his morning nap once and his afternoon nap once and for the first time took a 1-3pm nap recently. I’m looking forward to one nap because it will give us so much more flexibility, and I hope we can get back on a schedule soon.

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Nursing. I’ve been able to drop the post-nap feedings this month and am happy about that. {At least until our naps got all screwed up!} We’re down to about 4 feedings a day. I didn’t know how long I’d breastfeed when I first became a mom beyond my goal of a year. I’m really glad we’ve made it (almost) to a year, but I’m not sure how much longer I want to go on. On the one hand, I’m eager to get a little bit more independence for us both, but on the other hand it makes me really sad to think about nursing being over. M still seems to want to nurse, but he doesn’t seem to be obsessed with it or tugging at me all day, so I think I could probably wean him easily when the time comes with distractions and snacks. I don’t plan to force wean him over a weekend or anything, but I think I’ll start thinking about it after his first birthday.

I’m also testing out this new nursing cover – the Momcho Poncho! The fabric is super soft and of course I love the grey chevron. It’s compact and easy to carry around because it’s so lightweight. It’s also good for hot summertime because of the open sides (although sometimes I do wish the sides were more filled in for more privacy). I’m not sure I’d wear it as a real outfit (would you?), but I like it as a cover.

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Two things I’m really tired of:

Wiping runny noses (do you cringe when you hear a sneeze like I do!?) and cleaning the kitchen floor. In fact cleaning all of the food-related things has gotten really old. As one would expect, food goes everywhere at mealtimes. At what age does that get better? 2? 5? 10? 18?

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Other things:

Holding my heavy baby is getting easier, as he’s learning how to hold on to me. The first time he put his hand on my shoulder I nearly died of the cuteness.

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He is also really good at giving kisses – big sloppy ones that he holds there and giggles through. Sometimes he shows so much affection all at once, and it’s heart melting.

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We have tried peanut butter! I put some in a banana smoothie and gave M a taste. No signs of any changes – whew!

xoxo

Reading List Erased

I was going through my Kindle app the other day (long time, no see!) and saw that I still had lots of books on baby sleep and breastfeeding. And then I realized I would never read them. How amazing that we are on the other side – success! So I deleted them with joy.

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Several people have asked me for a recommended reading list, yet I always pause without much to say. The books I read were OK but they didn’t really help much. Other than the Happiest Baby On the Block’s soothing techniques, I didn’t find any of the books I read very helpful.

As I’m sure most first time moms do, I spent many hours researching breastfeeding and sleep in those early days. I was desperate to take away just one good bit of advice that would change things for the better. Now that I’m on the other side – meaning we have a baby who sleeps through the night, naps well and nurses like a champ – I can say that none of the books provided any answers that led to our success. The books, as I’m sure they are designed to do to increase sales, make you think there’s a formula to success. Few, if any, of the techniques I read about actually worked. (I didn’t read Ferber’s book, but I did use his sleep training method at the advice of friends). My success came from real advice from friends and TIME.

The lactation consultants told me Mazen’s latch was perfect. Yet I still experienced pretty bad pain for 6 weeks or so. The only thing that I think helped was time – for his mouth to get bigger, for him to learn how to latch himself, and for my body to desensitize.

The sleep experts told me to put him down awake, read cues, etc. yet Mazen never slept well despite doing everything they recommended. What eventually did get him to sleep was teaching him that it was OK to wake up and go back to sleep at an appropriate age for both of us.

But when you’re doing something for the first time, nothing makes you feel more helpless and out of control then when someone else says “Just give it time.” You are desperate for a plan – anything – to make even the slightest improvements. So I’m not here to tell any other first time moms not to read the books or try your darnest to get your baby to fall asleep ‘drowsy but awake.’ Reading will make you feel better.

But I will say – you’d probably have more fun reading novels or watching TV or SLEEPING during your spare time and you’ll probably figure it out yourself with just as much success in time.*

*Please remind me of this when we approach the terrible two tantrums, potty training and more!

7 Months

We are almost to 8 months and I feel like time is just slipping through my fingers!!

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I look back at photos of Mazen when he was tiny (not that he was ever tinytiny!) and I really struggle to remember those days.

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We have hit the stage where Mazen is learning new things every single day. He says “Mama” when he wants something and loves to babble “Dadadada” all day long while he’s playing. Karen and I got him to wave bye-bye yesterday! He seems to be mimicking us really well (not sure that he really understands anything that he does). We learned that if we made spitting noises at him he would laugh, so guess who now makes spitting noises all day long?

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I feel that we are days away from real crawling. He can move 2-3 feel on his own (especially when motivated by a smart phone on the horizon!) but it’s more of an inchworm roll than a crawl. Just last week he started getting on his hands and knees and rocking, so I’m sure the real deal is not too far behind. I just bought a baby gate to get ready.

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But until crawling actually happens, we’re in this lovely sweet spot where I can leave him with toys on the floor and he’ll play happily while I do a few chores.

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Diaper changes now take place on the floor because they have become a huge wrestling match! All he wants to do is practice rolling over. Putting a diaper on a baby on his tummy is not easy.

We’ve started trying out baby sign language after we had a class with Baby Signs with Gillian. So far so good! Our most used signs are eat, more, mama, dada and sleep. It’s hard to sign to him when he’s in my arms, so nurse, nap and others are harder for me to remember to do. I really want to keep at it though!

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He still loves to eat and is quite the foodie. He hasn’t tasted a food he hasn’t liked yet, including broccoli, green beans, spinach and even herring! We’ve gotten a lot more lax about introducing new foods, and I’ve given him tastes of everything from Great Harvest Bread to fish. (Tiny pinches since he can’t chew much yet). He seems to love it all. He does use his two little bottom teeth effectively though! Here’s a fun video that sums up 7 months quite well: chewing, babbling, and spitting!

 

Breastfeeding is still going well. Solid foods are a bit confusing because it’s hard to tell if he’s eating because he’s hungry or for the fun of it! He seems to want to eat whenever I do, so we’re doing 3 meals per day, although lunch is usually quite small compared to official breakfast and dinner meals. I’m trying my best to read his cues, and I’m hoping someday he’ll be able to sign back to me “more” and “all done” with confidence.

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We are on a pretty awesome nap schedule at the moment. He sleeps for an hour and 15 minutes or so at 9am and 1pm and then 40 minutes to an hour at 5. Bedtime is at 8. This is the first time in almost 8 months that I’ve been able to predict my day by the clock. It kind of rocks.

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He has just started to show signs of true understanding of things. When I close the curtains for a nap he squeaks out a little cry because he has learned to associate the darkness. When he grabbed my nose particularly hard and I said OUCH in a stern tone he cried thinking he had gotten in trouble. He knows to look for my cell phone on the nightstand during nursing sessions. And he laughs so hard when he hears me say “Gooooooood morrrrrning!!” when I come in his room everyday.

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Some Stats

Weight: ~21 pounds!

Likes: Food, bath time, jumping, toys that light up, tags, zippers, earrings, mommy’s hair, his stroller, spitting, silly faces

Dislikes: Diaper changes, getting dressed, the sound of the curtains closing for naptime

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His laughs are amazing. His thighs so incredibly juicy. I still miss him when he is asleep <3

Baby Sleep Training

This is a post that I really debated writing. Writing about crying is never going to be accepted by all. Ultimately I decided to share because I find reading blog accounts of baby events before I attempt them myself to be SO helpful. I hope this post is helpful for some of you. If you don’t agree with sleep training, you might want to just skip this one!

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I once heard that over 80% of families do some kind of sleep training. I have no idea if that statistic is true, but I believe it. Having survived the first 6 months of Mazen’s life and talking with so many of my mom friends (both in person and online ones) I am convinced that most older babies just need a little help to be able to learn to sleep.*

*Notice I said older babies because I would not ever expect a newborn to sleep through the night!

Mazen was a typical newborn who slept in 2-hour stretches at night and only napped when held. After turning 6 weeks old, he started to nap in the swing, in his crib and in the stroller and at night started sleeping 4-5 hours for the first stretch followed by a few 2 hour blocks. He went through the four month sleep regression from 3.5-4.5 months (yes it lasted a month!) and never regularly slept longer than 3 hours at time after that. During the peak of the regression, he was up as often as every 20 minutes! When things seemed to get a little better, he was still waking up every 1-3 hours all night, every night. As a 5 month old, he was a fairly good crib napper when he learned to roll onto his tummy but rarely slept for more than one sleep cycle of 35-40 minutes. He was a huge fan of the pacifier, and while it helped us tremendously during this time, it did end up being a big obstacle to sound sleep when it became a sleep association he needed to dose off. I feel that all of his sleep behaviors up to 6 months, while frustrating at times, were normal and typical.

I could sit here and analyze what I could have done differently, but I don’t regret much. Maybe I could have let him cry a little longer during the first 6 months in hopes that he would learn to sleep, but as a new parent to a first child, I don’t think I ever let him cry for more than 2 minutes before I went in to get him. Perhaps that was our downfall, but again, I don’t regret it. I probably needed to go get him more than he might have needed me!

Before I get into how we sleep trained, allow me to set the stage with a before and after.

Before at 6 months

  • 3-4 naps a day, 2 to 2.25 hours apart.
  • Most naps lasted 35-40 minutes (one sleep cycle) before he would wake up crying.
  • We would rarely (maybe once a week) get a nap longer than an hour. One time in 6 months he napped more than 2 hours.
  • Going down for a nap involved a wind-down routine at 2-hour wake time. I spent 15-20 minutes actively putting him down for naps by hovering over the crib replacing the pacifier after he pulled it out and cried because he couldn’t fall asleep without it. Matt and I called it airport: he’d pull a paci out and fly it around in his hand and another would land in his mouth. (You might say this meant he didn’t want it in his mouth, but he was just procrastinating sleep – he wouldn’t fall asleep without it.)
  • At bedtime he would cry most nights too – same parent soothing routine.
  • Nighttime sleep was from about 7:30pm to 7:30am with wake ups at 9, 10, 11 then maybe 1, 2, 3:30, 4:30, 6, 6:30 and 7. Exhausting! Wakeups were often fixed pretty quickly with a paci put back in and some pats.
  • One parent slept in the nursery at all times (usually Matt from bedtime to midnight and then me for the rest) so the other could get some sound sleep. This was SO helpful for us to get rest in the early months and we didn’t mind sleeping apart at all. But we were kind of ready to get normalcy back.
  • We had one night feeding around 3:30am. I cut back from feeding him every 3 hours to once a night fairly easily around 5.5 months in anticipation of sleep training. He didn’t really miss the nighttime feedings – we just did our usual soothing techniques and he went back to sleep.

And After…

  • Morning naps have extended to 1.5 hours most days of the week.
  • Afternoon naps have also extended but not always. Still taking 3-4 naps a day depending on their length. 3 naps is most typical. Waking up happy from a much larger portion of naps instead of crying.
  • Bedtime is between 7 and 8.
  • Our last nursing session is right before bed. After that I sing and hum songs in the dark room before putting him down. Usually he cries for a few moments when I first lay him in his crib, but that doesn’t last more than a minute or two before he starts singing sleepy songs (they sound like a cat howling!) and then falls asleep usually within 10 minutes.
  • Sleep 10-10.5 hours straight!!
  • Wake up between 5:45-7am.

Amazing difference, right? When I say he sleeps 10+ hours, sometimes he does wake up and make some noise at night. A brief cry here or there. But it’s been over 3 weeks and we haven’t had to go in for any soothing since the first few nights of sleep training.

The How

So the how. First, shout out to my amazing coach Caitlin! I said in previous posts that I “didn’t want to sleep train.” I don’t really think anyone wants to do it, but I knew I would when the time came IF the frequent night waking continued. As we approached 6 months, I knew we were going to need to do it. Since it’s easier to sleep train at 6-7 months than later, I knew it was now or never.

Caitlin’s sleep training post is so well written – go read it! I agree with all of her points, especially that Mazen knew he crib was a safe place to be. We followed the same technique that Caitlin did – a Ferber method with comfort checks every 10 minutes.

The basic guidelines are:

1. Comfort checks every 10 minutes of moderate to hard crying. (Light fussing doesn’t count)

2. If baby quiets down for sleep and starts up again the 10 minutes starts over.

3. The parent comforts for 30 seconds with touch and voice to let the baby know they haven’t abandoned them and tell them they are just learning to go to sleep.

Night One

I knew it was going to be hard. I may have shed a tear or two. But I also knew the more you bend the harder it is, so I was determined to make it the easiest on us all by getting it right the first time. I was honestly prepared for the worst. I really thought he was going to cry all night long. I knew even if he fell asleep the first time that he might cry for a really long time at his 3:30 feeding time. (Sidebar: I asked our pediatrician if I should drop that feeding along with sleep training and she said yes.)

Mazen cried for 42 minutes. We went in at 2 minutes, 5, 10, 10, 10.. and so on for checks. Matt and I both wondered if he would know how to fall asleep. We sat at the dining room table listening, watching the monitor and talking. And then all of a sudden he was quiet…asleep! We were so proud. He figured it out. We knew he was capable of falling asleep on his own, and that gave us the encouragement to continue.

The rest of the night went SO much better than I expected. (I took notes.)

  • 10:45-10:50 cry
  • 11:15-11:17 peeps
  • 1:05-1:14 cry
  • 4:45 a peep
  • 5:05-5:07 cry
  • 6:30 awake

As you can see, we didn’t have to go back into his room at all the rest of the night. And he did a 3 hour, 39 minute stretch! I did end up pumping around 4am during normal feeding time, but this was the one and only night I felt the need.

Night Two

At bedtime he fell asleep – alone – in FIVE MINUTES! We were again prepared for the worst and again shocked.

  • 9:10-9:36 crying with one check (because he calmed down at times we only went in once)
  • FOUR HOUR STRETCH!
  • 1:36-1:45 crying but not enough for a check
  • FOUR HOUR STRETCH!
  • 6:30 awake

Compared to our “before” nights, this was an incredible improvement with only one moderate crying session at 9:10.

Night Three

  • 8:05-8:20 moderate crying with check
  • 9:00 peep
  • 10:10 peep
  • 11:24-11:50 on and off moderate crying with 2 checks
  • 2:09-2:24 on and off moderate crying with a check
  • 5:40-5:45 peeps
  • 6:45 awake

We had a a little regression with the longer periods at 11:30 and 2 but overall still getting better. This was the last night we had to get out of bed for a comfort check!

Night Four

  • 8:08-8:16 whine to sleep
  • 11:48-11:55 light cry
  • 3:40-3:46 light cry
  • 7:10 awake!

It’s worrrrrkkkkinnnnggg!!

Night Five

  • 7:25-7:32 whine to sleep
  • SLEPT 9.5 HOURS!!!!!!!!
  • 4:55-5:15 on and off light cries
  • 6:45 awake

I consider this to mean that it took us four nights to teach him to sleep through the night.

Night Six

  • 7:31-7:42 babbled to sleep
  • SLEPT 7.5 HOURS!!
  • 3:00 peep
  • 6:30 awake

And Now…

  • 7-8 bedtime. He cries just for a minute when I put him down. Fuss/babble to sleep in 10 minutes.
  • SLEEPS 10-10.5 HOURS!!!!
  • Maybe a peep or two, but rarely crying at night.
  • Up at 6-7am

I’m SO glad we did this. In all of sleep training, there were only 5 times when Mazen was actually upset enough for us to comfort check him. Most of it was moderate to light protest crying. More whining than crying. One of the reasons I am glad we waited until 6 months to do this is because his cries changed. At 3-4 months he was still an itty baby with itty baby needs and itty baby cries. But by 6 months he knew how to throw a fit at bedtime, flailing about. I could tell during sleep training that he wasn’t crying out of hunger or pain or fear but out of protest. I could also tell he just wasn’t well rested. This made it much easier for me to handle emotionally.

Here are a few things I was not expecting to be so great

-He used to wake up a ton in the evenings at unpredictable times and I would cluster feed him frequently when he was younger. Therefore, leaving a bottle for a babysitter was challenging. We couldn’t say “He’ll wake up at 10 for a bottle” because we never knew. Now I can put him to bed and feel confident that unless he becomes sick he will stay asleep. I’ve been out with friends a few times and we’ve been on a date after bedtime, and it’s been fun to get evenings back!

-I’m spending SO much less time soothing. We used to spend hours hovering at the crib. And he was still crying! Now when I put him down for a nap he still fusses for a few minutes but I don’t have to be there the whole time.

-Also unexpectedly, his morning naps are now pretty consistently 1.5 hours. I can often hear him wake up and stir at the end of that first sleep cycle – around 35/40 minutes – but he self-soothes back to sleep.

-He used to wake up from naps crying, but I’d say half of the time now he wakes up peacefully and starts babbling until I come in. It’s so fun to see how excited he gets when he hears me enter the room!

-I am no longer making two beds a day (the nursery and the master) or washing two sets of sheets every single week and that rules. I love sleeping with my husband again!

And here is one downside to sleeping through the night

I miss him. I think part of the reason I wanted to wait was because I couldn’t stand the thought of going all night without a snuggle! Snuggles > sleep, I know, crazy. But now when I sing him his bedtime songs I know I probably won’t see him for a long, long night and that last hug is extra tight!

Good morning!

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4 Month Sleep Regression

As I mentioned in a KERF post last week (thanks for all of the advice!), we’ve just been through the 4 month sleep regression (so it seems! And note the past tense!) Mazen didn’t sleep more than 3 to mayyyybe 4 hours since before Christmas (with the exception of New Year’s Eve which was a totally lucky fluke of 4 hours and 45 minutes!) and our second-half-of-the-nights have been exhausting. We have successfully moved bedtime up to about 7:30 and he goes down pretty easily but then wakes up again within an hour. He’ll typically do a longer stretch (3 hours or so) from a 9:30/10 after a feeding to just past midnight and then the rest of the night looks like this:

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We can’t pinpoint any discomfort or temperature or hunger problems (I nurse him maybe 2-3 times from 9 to 7am) so I’m chalking it up to 4 month regression and I’ve stopped worrying that it’s something I’m doing (for the most part).

For the first time since M was born, “sleeping while the baby sleeps” is quite necessary. I’ve had to take a few daytime naps to keep my head on my shoulders. This stage has been way harder than the newborn stage. At least then he was sleeping two hours at a time instead of one or less!

I don’t mind if he wants to wake up at night at all (because he needs me) and I’m not wishing he’d sleep for 10 hours yet (although that would be nice..) I just wish we could get back to hours of sleeping time instead of minutes. It’s the up and down for the whole second half of the night that means neither of us is getting any rest.

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You know how everyone talks about morning sickness but you don’t really get how bad it’s going to be until you’re in it? That’s how the 4 month sleep regression is. No one warned me it would be this bad! I hear there’s an 8 month sleep regression. Maybe potty training is worse than people say. Terrible Two Tantrums?

I’ve read Healthy Sleep Habits, The Baby Whisperer, Harvey Karp’s sleep book, No Cry Sleep Solution so far and have gathered the common themes from them all. We are working on dark, still crib naps, not having him be overtired, etc. but I feel like there’s just SO much information out there, and I’m not sure it always works for us. For example, two days when he didn’t nap well he slept well at night. That is counter to what EVERY sleep book says about sleep begetting sleep. And despite the “fact” that movement naps in swings and strollers “aren’t restorative,” they really do seem to recharge him. I”d rather him nap an hour in the stroller than 20 minutes in the crib.

I know what you guys are going to say: every baby is different and you can’t raise your child based on what a book says. I know this. I would just think that the sleep experts and doctors writing these books would know what they’re talking about, so I’m surprised when my baby does the opposite (although this is not the first I’ve heard from other moms of non-nappers sleeping well at night regardless).

Several of you have said that your baby just “got it” one day when it comes to sleeping, so I’m hoping that works for us. Hoping.

However, as hard as it is to get up in the middle of the night over and over, I have to say that I often look forward to our nighttimes. When I settle down in the master bedroom for first shift, I miss him, and after that first longer stretch, no matter how tired I am, I’m always glad to snuggle close to nurse. Even when he’s crying hard, he’s still my cute little baby.

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Update

Just a few days after writing this post, the clouds parted and we got a 5 hour stretch, followed by 4.5, and then another 5. The second half of the night has been much better too, although still more like 2 hours + 1 +1. Naps are still shorter than they were, but I’ll take them. I also feel like he has reached that developmental leap – suddenly he’s reaching out for toys with concentrated intention and he just seems to be more alert. He wants to sit or stand up all the time now. Growing fast!

32 Weeks: The Princess And The Pillows

32 weeks

I am sleeping so much better this week – and for a surprising reason. I bought a snoogle pillow as soon as sleeping on my stomach seemed a bit awkward. If you haven’t seen one of these before….it’s a big curved body pillow that can be molded into different shapes for a variety of comfortable positions.

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The only problem is – I found the top curve to be way too hard and high to be my neck pillow. So I basically unravel it every night, place my down pillow in the spot to keep the snoogle away, and then enjoy a straight body pillow with a curved bottom.

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I actually really like the bottom curve (so I’m still glad I bought this guy) because I can pull it up between my legs. I’ve never needed a pillow between my legs before, but something about having a bump makes it necessary.

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Flipped the other way = back prop

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As I mentioned last week, rolling over had gotten really hard and I was having lots of hip fatigue in the mornings. The snoogle stays on one side of the bed and I don’t flip with it. Maybe it was the heat or the fact that I am bigger now or just the need for a change, but one night I just decided to banish the giant pillow and sleep with more space.

I’ve realized that I can sleep sort of on my stomach – with my knee propped up for space – pretty well. It’s almost like I was afraid to try this when my bump was growing but now that it’s bigger I can tell it’s ok pressure-wise? If I lie on my right side though, I get kicks to the bed! It’s cute : )

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I’ve noticed at my massage appointments that having a pillow from my knee down to my angle is really awesome, so I invited a regular down pillow in for that purpose.

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I also have this tiny throw pillow that I wedge behind my back that keeps me from falling backwards. See it in the back – bright yellow!

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This pillow change has been good! My abs feel better (could be a coincidence?) and I’m sleeping so much more soundly than I was a week ago (also could be a coincidence). BUT I’m going to assume the pillows are to thank – and I’ll keep using the new system until things change for the worse.

Sweet dreams!

PREVIOUS 32 week posts

To Due List

What To Reject When You’re Expecting

Lumpy + Bumpy

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31 weeks

14 Weeks: Physical Changes

A few changes I’ve noticed this week:

1) I think my blood volume is definitely increasing. I can feel my heartbeat in all kinds of strange places – in my back, in my head, in my uterus, in my toes – at random times. And not to be totally gross, but I’ve heard that the inside of your nose often reacts to an increase in blood in the form of…blood. And I’ve noticed that too.

2) I can definitely feel my uterus! It’s hard to feel standing up because the core muscles are hard and on top. But if I sit down or bend over and make my abdomen mush, I can wiggle my fingers deep in there and feel a huge, hard melon in there. Like a big coconut in size. No wonder my organs are pushing out! I’ve heard if you push on the uterus the baby reacts with movement, and I’ve tried pushing a few times [very gently!] and sat verrrrrrrrry still but I don’t think I felt it.

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3) My stomach volume seems to have gone down….just a little. For the first 3 months of pregnancy, my appetite was raging and I also felt the need to eat all the time to keep the nausea down. Now it seems this week that I get full fast and don’t have any desire to even finish my meal. Thus, ice cream after dinner is no longer appealing (although popsicles are!)

 Popsicle

4) I think I’ve felt the baby move a few times this week. Once it was like vibrations inside of me. Like something battery operated. While I have no idea if these ticklings, vibrations or bubbles are actually the baby, they are new enough that my body is like “I haven’t felt anything like that before.” It will be interesting once I am definitely feeling it move if the types of movements will vary and if they will feel similar. Will a roll be a tickle? A kick a vibration? Or will they feel totally different!?

5) It’s getting more uncomfortable to bend in half. It almost feels like my uterus is a blown-up whoopee cushion and I’m bending it in half over my pubic bone.

Like so:

Uterus

It doesn’t really hurt, but it’s an odd feeling and has made me more aware of my bending positions. Maybe the uterus is still growing up and once it passes the pubic bone completely I won’t feel any of this pressure. I’ve also noticed a small amount of cramping this week. Not anything painful or long-lasting, but maybe that means it’s growing?

6) The idea of vegetables is becoming more and more appealing. More so at lunch than dinner though. It seems my nausea gets progressively worse all day long, bit by bit. The opposite of morning sickness for sure! This could be because I’m taking the Unisom + B6 in the morning and it wears off by the evening. But green smoothies for lunch and lots of avocado are at the top of my food favorites list right now!

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7) Gone are the days of sleeping soundly. I’m having all these little physical things that are keeping me from sleeping well. It’s like my body is full of nerves firing all night – like those restless leg syndrome commercials. I want to stretch all my limbs every 5 minutes and can’t seem to get comfortable despite the lovely layers of bedding and memory foam on our bed. I finally banished the Snoogle pillow from the bed and the past 2 nights have been better. Last night I even slept through Matt’s 6:30am alarm. I’ve never had trouble sleeping, so I hope this isn’t going to be a symptom for the next 6 months (thereafter I’m prepared for!) I wonder if these tingles and stretches are related to the blood volume increase?

8) You know how the camera adds 10 pounds? I think in my case the camera actually subtracts weight! I feel like I am so pregnant and when I look in the mirror in our bedroom as I pass by, my stomach is sticking right out – a nice little bump. But when I take my weekly photos, I am actually surprised by how flat my stomach actually is when I stand up straight!

This:

14 weeks (3)

Compared to how I often find myself standing:

14 weeks (1)

Posture is everything!!

9) This morning I got out the fetal heart detector and took a listen. I found Baby KERF right away, and the heartbeat was strong! But more than ever, the baby seemed to be moving around, back and forth, because I could not get the heartbeat to stay strong. It kept going in and out, loud and soft. Guess it was an active morning! I can’t wait until I can start playing music or eating food and seeing how it reacts. The thought that you can interact with a baby in utero is quite incredible!

10) BERF is now supposed to be 3.5 inches long (it was 7 cm at my ultrasound 2 weeks ago) and is the size of a LEMON. So amazing.

Previous 14 week posts

The Middle Part

PREVIOUS WEEKS

4 weeks

5 weeks

6 weeks

7 weeks

8 weeks

9 weeks

10 weeks

11 weeks

12 weeks

13 weeks

12 Weeks: Meds + Beds

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I’ve started to wean myself off my meds a bit since I’ve been feeling better. I accidentally forgot two lunch doses of my B6 and Unisom and felt OK, so one day I skipped them altogether. I did feel a bit more nausea that day, so I’m sticking with a breakfast dose for another week at least. I just hate the thought of ruining a dinner or day with sickness if I have a medicine that will completely prevent it. And I keep reminding myself that my doctor felt completely confident in their safety.

A month ago, I was sleeping 9 hours a night – sometimes more. Luckily I’ve got a job that allows for sleeping late! I think being able to sleep well at night meant that I didn’t experience some of the constant fatigue many women do in the first trimester. I only felt the need to nap a few times, and slept for 10-20 minutes – nothing major.

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But all of a sudden, insomnia has hit. I probably shouldn’t call it insomnia because I’m not to a point where I’m counting sheep at 3am, but whereas I used to sleep soundly through Matt’s 6:30am alarm clock, I’m now waking up every morning when he does and can’t go back asleep. Yesterday it was 5:30 when I woke up to pee and never went back to bed. So yesterday at least, I felt fatigued all day long.

I’m not sure if this change in sleep has to do with hormones or me weaning myself off the Unisom. Unisom is marketed as a sleep aid, but I haven’t felt drowsy at all while taking it. Something else about it helps with the nausea. My doctor also never mentioned anything about dependency, so that never crossed my mind until now. But the morning I experienced the most insomnia, I had not taken any medicine in 24 hours – the longest in weeks. So it could be related to that. I’m not sure if I should keep taking it or wean myself for this reason alone! But regardless, I don’t think I’ll be taking it much longer. Hopefully my body will adjust.

Speaking of getting up in the night to pee, that has also started occurring! I NEVER get up in the night – unless I chug a lot of water before bed, which I don’t normally do. But at around 10 weeks I started getting up about 5 out of 7 nights a week to go once. I hear this only gets worse as the uterus gets heavier and heavier! Although I have gotten up less this week than I did last week, so maybe my uterus is moving up and that will get a little better – at least for now.

Other 12 week posts

Transitions To Two

PREVIOUS WEEKS

4 weeks

5 weeks

6 weeks

7 weeks

8 weeks

9 weeks

10 weeks

11 weeks