Things are still good. I think that is why things are going quickly. Other than the fact that I have to wake up twice a night to feed her, things are great. And waking twice a night is just a fact of needing to get 8 feedings in her. There isn't anything that she needs to do differently; it will pass with age when I can let her sleep longer and skip a feeding. Here is an update on all the important things:
Things have been good. I haven't cut back on the gas drops at all. One reader suggested I try gripe water, so I intend to buy some of that and slowly replace the gas drops with the gripe water.
McKenna eats from both sides for the great majority of her feedings. A few days into this week, things really just clicked with nursing. I relaxed about whether to feed both sides or one side. I decided nursing both sides had always worked for my children in the past and there was no reason to change what I knew. Once I decided that, things clicked for us. Her growth really took off. I haven't had to work as hard to keep her awake, which I always enjoy. There is still work, but not as much. I do often need to change her diaper between sides, but once I do that, she easily eats from side two.
I don't time each side. I have her eat as long as she will eat from each side. She isn't one who seems to need non-nutritive sucking, so when she is done, she will often come off herself. I do pay attention to time and work to get at least 10 minutes out of her, but if she needs more than 10 (she is still swallowing after 1-6 sucks), I let her continue on.
It is funny how things change. In week one, this was our biggest struggle. Now, it is basically a non-issue. She burps easily and quickly.
Her waketime is continuing to increase slightly. She still has some feedings where all she can do is stay awake for the feeding and diaper change and she is done. I don't fight her. If she needs to sleep, I let her. I put her down awake after each feeding. After a feeding diaper change, it has been at least 30 minutes which is long enough for a baby that young.
She still doesn't show obvious nap cues. If she is still alert after 40-45 minutes, I start the nap process, and she is always ready for sleep within 5 minutes of that. With a baby this age, I think it is critical that they don't get overstimulated. It is important for all ages, but critical for these young newborns.
There has been no change other than she is getting to be a faster eater at night. The process was taking about 50 minutes to feed and diaper change, and now it is taking about 30. This is great for me because I get more sleep :)
She is still napping well and still has never cried before going down for a nap. I still wake her for all of her feedings.
We had some big events this week. One is Easter. McKenna was awake a little longer than usual (65 minutes) because we were doing Easter with the kids. Happily, she went to sleep fine and slept fine. I am pretty sure she is an Angel baby as defined by Tracy Hogg, the Baby Whisperer. Hogg says that when these baby's get overstimulated, it usually doesn't take much to settle them down.
Another big event was Kaitlyn's birthday party. We simply had family over, but you know how family likes to hold babies. I fed McKenna right as people were arriving, then let her be passed around for her waketime. Then I said I would put her down while we ate and did festivities. It worked well because people got to see her and she still was able to maintain her consistency.
McKenna had her first bath this week (instead of a sponge bath). She wasn't as mad as Brayden was, but not as calm as Kaitlyn. Of course, Kaitlyn's umbilical cord didn't fall off until she was four weeks old, so she was a lot older of a baby.
We also had photos taken this week. This completely disrupted one of her naps (between her 4:30 and 7:00 PM feedings). I chose to do it in the evening so that the entire day would not be disrupted. She went down after her 7:00 PM feeding just fine, but woke at 9:00 PM for a feeding rather than 10:00 PM.
McKenna had her first bottle this week. I pumped an ounce. She ate half an ounce without a problem, but wasn't very interested in eating from a bottle. By that I mean that she was taking it really slowly. I then nursed her. In case you are wondering why I am introducing a bottle to her, see this post: Non-BW Tips and Tricks: Breastfeeding moms, give your baby a bottle: http://babywisemom.blogspot.com/2007/12/non-bw-tips-and-tricks-breastfeeding.html
Growth spurts are supposed to happen every 3-4 weeks. As she approached 3 weeks old, I kept my eye out for it. Since she needs to be woken from every nap, I knew if she woke early it would mean she needed to eat. At the end of this week (just as she was turning 3 weeks) I think she had a growth spurt. She woke for 7 feedings in a row. Since she usually only wakes for 2 a day, I thought this was a good sign of a growth spurt. The next day, she was very, very sleepy and hard to get to eat all day. She also didn't poop as much for a couple of days. I am not 100% sure the growth spurt is past and over. I am still watching for it this week and read for it, but I think it possibly did happen.
My emotions have been quite even--up until this week. I want to discuss this because I don't think it is often addressed. My emotions have been really calm and even up until this week. I am an extrovert, and by this point it was getting to me to be cut off from the world so much :). My husband also had a big emergency at work, causing him to work a lot of extra hours, including Saturdays. So, things were getting hard. I was reading in Secrets of the Baby Whisperer where she discusses the emotions new moms go through. It was a great thing to read because I had experienced almost all of them that week. I will do a separate post on that, but just know that if you are feeling emotional, it is normal. It is normal to feel inadequate. It is normal to feel like it is a piece of cake and you can handle anything, only to feel overwhelmed several hours later.
They are the same, but still helpful:
- Secrets of the Baby Whisperer: How to Calm, Connect, and Communicate with Your Baby
- On Becoming Baby Wise
- What to Expect the First Year
- The Baby Whisperer Solves All Your Problems: Sleeping, Feeding, and Behavior--Beyond the Basics from Infancy Through Toddlerhood
- Non-BW Tips and Tricks: Breastfeeding moms, give your baby a bottle: http://babywisemom.blogspot.com/2007/12/non-bw-tips-and-tricks-breastfeeding.html
- Swaddling: http://babywisemom.blogspot.com/2007/11/swaddling.html
- Baby Whisperer: Feeding a Sleepy Newborn
- Sleepy Newborns: http://babywisemom.blogspot.com/2007/12/sleepy-newborns.html
- Adding Waketime to Your Newborn's Day
- Baby Whisperer: Growth Spurts
- Growth Spurts: http://babywisemom.blogspot.com/2007/12/growth-spurts.html
- newborn summary (blog label)