Family Friday (vol. 41): Hanging On By A Thread

I feel like my Family Friday updates have been really negative. I don’t mean for them to be, but man, parenting is not easy. Parenting + working full-time is loads of stress…and add to that a baby who gets up 2 times a night – yep, I’m hanging on by a thread. I daydream about sleeping through the night. Literally.

How is it that Piper slept better months ago than she sleeps now? I should probably sleep train, BUT…the only time she will breastfeed is in the middle of the night. Any other time, she refuses to nurse. I spend so much time pumping and seriously, is there anything more inconvenient than pumping to turn around and give it to your baby who is fully capable of nursing but chooses not to? The lactation consultant is fresh out of ideas for me, too. On the plus side, she will nurse while I’m half asleep, so there is that. In case anyone is curious why this happened, especially since for so many months we couldn’t get her to take a bottle (!), I think it was the combination of teething (she has her 2 front bottom teeth and has since ~4 1/2 months) and my going back to work full-time.

And it’s not just the pumping that is getting tiring, but Piper is so…different from Shea as a baby. Piper is on high alert at ALL times. She won’t be cradled and held for a bottle, but instead, she will take a few gulps before arching her back and wanting to sit up and look around, no matter how tired she is. Shea was like a wet noodle and just cuddled and enjoyed her bottles, start to finish. I remember not wanting to give up bottles because rocking her at night while she had her bottle was my favorite. With Piper, it’s a battle to get her to take much of anything before bed, and if she does, it’s with thanks to walking while bouncing and offering and offering again, sip after sip. It’s no easy task. Of course because she doesn’t take much before bed, she’s generally up before midnight for her first night feeding. You know, right about the time I’m hitting REM.

Piper is the reason toys come with straps/belts. She could wiggle and squirm her way out of anything. I think she will be one of those babies who is happier once mobile, and I suspect that means she will keep me on my toes at all times 😉

Piper’s naps have gone to heck. When I pick her up at daycare, they’re quick to inform me that they tired to get her to nap more/longer…but with no success. By the time I get her home, she’s a MESS. I’ve tried moving around her bedtime, but even that hasn’t seemed to help. She has also matured in that she understands when we leave the room…and she protests with cries. Fortunately, she and Shea have a closeness that continues to grow and they have their little language that only they understand. If Shea’s laughing or looking at her, Piper is so happy. She literally lights up when her big sister is around and it is so, so, so, so cute <3

 

I know every situation is different, but as the saying goes, “One child is one child and two children feels like ten!”

I’m keeping my eye on the prize of warmer months coming, more daylight, and continuing to find our groove as a family of 4. Oh, and a trip to Cancun in just over a month. Hello, sleep and sunshine! This mama needs a recharge!

Be well,

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4 Comments

  1. Kat
    February 25, 2017 / 9:37 am

    Hang in there. You are doing a great job even if it doesn’t feel like it. Being a mom is hard work. Keep your eye on the prize(vacation). And enjoy it!!!

  2. Ranjani
    February 25, 2017 / 10:03 pm

    I appreciate these “negative” posts because they are real and honest! I just had my second child a few weeks ago (older one just turned 3) and am trying to find the new rhythm as well.

  3. February 25, 2017 / 10:22 pm

    My husband always says “kids are great, parenting is hard!” My daughter never was able to latch so I pumped exclusively for too long really, she hated bottles, which was nuts, and I remember the bouncing and the 50+ minutes it would take at every feed!! Hang in there, you are doing great!

  4. Stacey
    February 28, 2017 / 11:02 am

    I exclusively pumped with our daughter so I know that is sucks to pump and then turn around and feed her… I only did this while on maternity leave and then switched to formula. In regards to the wake-ups and only nursing at night, my guess is she’s using nursing as a pacifier. If it was me I would sleep-train. When we took away my daughter’s nightly feeding per her Dr’s orders at 4-months it took maybe 3-4 nights before she realized it was gone and she needed another way to soothe. Then she slept 11-12 hours. She’ll figure it out – they always do. But if you continue to give her the option to nurse, she’ll take it instead of trying to figure out how to soothe herself back to sleep without you. Our daughter was also terrible at eating – she was easily distracted and STILL is at 2! Girlfriend is always absorbing everything around her. I had better luck feeding her in a quiet room but even still if she didn’t eat after an hour, that was it. By taking away the middle of the night feedings and offering her more (or more often) during the day she’ll figure out that’s the only time to get food. In regards to nursing over bottles during the day, I’m guessing she’s taking the easy route since she knows she has to work less with the bottle 🙂 They are smart little buggers and I have realized I never gave my daughter enough credit for all she was capable of learning!

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