Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Parenting, Advice, Books, and More!

Get around a group of moms and it's inevitable. The talk begins of when you stopped (or plan to stop) nursing; how old your baby was when he first rolled over, smiled, clapped his hands; does your baby sit up, spit up, roll over. Then the big one comes out.

How is your baby sleeping at night?

If the answer is -- and mine *sigh* is -- that your child is still waking up like clockwork every 3 hours and demanding to eat, everyone has a piece of advice.

Have you read this book? Oh, you mean the one where it says to let your baby cry himself back to sleep and assures the reader that after 45 minutes, the screaming will stop and then proceeds to explain that each night the child will cry for less and less time? Yeah. Read that one. Tried it. After 45 minutes my guy was screaming more loudly than before. After an hour, I thought he was going to shatter the windows. So I comforted him. The next night, it was the same routine. He works himself into a frenzy (and wakes up his brother in the process). So that one was a wash.

Strange, I read another book, too, that promised that after 3 rounds of crying, all babies fall asleep. Maybe I'll explain that to little Mr. W. the next time he starts in at round 4.

What about that book that says to go in and feed or hold the baby every time he starts to cry? Read that one, too. Tried it. The first night it was great. Babies woke up. Babies were fed or rocked. Babies went back to sleep for another 3 hours. Unfortunately, they decided they liked being rocked more than they liked going back to sleep on their own after a cycle. So the next night, they were up and demanding attention every 45 mintues. Doesn't that seem a bit counter-productive?

Some other well-meaning mother asked how much they were eating and how often. Four ounces of formula every 3 hours. Pretty much like clockwork. Have I tried 6 ounces every 4 hours? Yeah, hadn't thought of that one. Too bad about that GERD thing. Six ounces comes right back up and makes them scream from the burning stomach acid in the throat. That one worked like a charm, let me tell you.

Cluster feeding at night? Hmmm . . . again, with reflux, that's not going to work.

What about rice cereal in the bottle to fill up a little tummy and keep it feeling full longer? Tried it. Made no difference whatsoever. Thanks, though. As much as I appreciate all the helpful hints and advice, all babies are different. Each family is different. Everyone has to figure out what works for her family and for her baby and roll with that. If that means that I'll still be getting up in the middle of the night when my boys are 6, 8, or 9 months old, so be it.

I can't wait for potty training. I'm sure everyone will be full of wisdom then, too.

1 comment:

Kelly said...

Amen, sister! I try to avoid giving advice unless it's asked for (so stop me next time if I try). Why does our society revolve so much around SLEEP? Why doesn't anyone ever ask, "Is your baby happy?" Even doing the same things for different siblings can produce totally different results. No one knows your boys like YOU do, so listen to them and to your gut more than any silly book -- I have a shelf full of them and none of them have worked for either of our kids so far!

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