Monday, December 5, 2011

Sleep and Diet Changes: Interim Report

Forgive my lack of posts recently. I can't seem to find time for my paid work, my three kids with their various needs, and blogging. This will just be a quick post, because it's almost 11:30 and I want to go to bed. But I also wanted to make sure you all know that I'm still chugging along!

GI is three months old today, which means that he's making his way out of that "fourth trimester" and into "infancy." So far, I've definitely noticed an overall sunnier mood in the evenings, although he's still fussy for a few minutes around 8:00. He doesn't, however, want to go to sleep for the night before about 10:30. At least, I haven't managed to convince him to do so. His brother SB was kind enough to decide on his own that 8:00 was bedtime, so I'm having trouble figuring out how to shift GI's daily cycles so that he's ready for bed earlier.

I'm not in a huge hurry. I don't expect to be able to "sleep train" a three-month-old. Nor, really, do I anticipate his falling into a more predictable sleep routine for a while yet. Every day is different, including when he finally drops all the way into the solid night-time sleep I'm so lucky he gives me. He really sleeps quite well at night for a small baby!

I use the adjective "small" loosely, as he's probably around 17 pounds now, making him bigger than some six-month-olds and even as big as a few petite one-year-olds! He's a little chunker.

I also haven't quite figured out if anything else I'm eating or drinking is affecting him. He's still gassy at times, enough to make him groan and whine and writhe some mornings before settling again. I definitely think this is mostly due to my oversupply/forceful letdown that I still haven't resolved. Now, instead of having it on just one side, I have it on both. So much for fixing it! I'm hoping that in the next few weeks, my supply will regulate to something more reasonable. That should solve that problem. Interestingly, this problem makes him generally not want to comfort-suck, which is good for me because it means I have not, in fact, become a "human pacifier." It also means he's become quite happy to take a pacifier (even from me!) and will even go to sleep sucking on that rather than my breast. I've decided to consider this a good thing! I don't know how I'll feel if he's still addicted to his paci at 2-1/2, but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it.

As for what I'm eating, I've cut out dairy completely and I try to keep soy reasonably low. I still have it, but I try not to have too much. I've also reduced caffeine to only what shows up in chocolate and decaf coffee (not much). I've found that a decaf in the morning at least gives me the psychological boost, if not the physical one, that a caffeinated coffee would, so I'm coping. What with avoiding milk, soy, and caffeine, there isn't much for me at Starbucks, though! I had to settle for an iced tea this weekend. I look forward to being able to ingest one of their overly sweet, calorie-laden, caffeinated drinks again one day, though.

I have concluded that dairy makes him spit up. I don't know if it causes any other problems, like fussiness. He still spits up sometimes, but not as much or as dramatically as when I've had dairy. There's definitely a difference. It's good to see results and know that these efforts have been effective. I do plan to try goat's-milk or sheep's-milk cheese at some point soon. If he's reacting to the proteins in cow's milk, I still may be able to get away with milk from a goat or sheep. I'm interested to see what happens.

I have a few topics in mind to cover in the next few weeks when I find the time. In the meantime, if anyone has any questions for or suggestions for topics, I'd love to hear them!

Oh, and one last thing! I've released a second edition of my book, The "Yes, It's Normal!" Guide to Breastfeeding, updated with some new information and experiences since having GI. Please check it out and recommend it to friends!

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