if you’re anything like me, you find it difficult to even find time to have a wash, there’s always something more pressing. Here I’m hoping to encourage myself and you to put yourself first a bit more!
Just a quickie to mark the fact that Reuben turned 3 months old this week and has graduated to a baby. Thank god! We seem to be out of that newborn phase. We survived the forth trimester! Although sadistically, I’m already missing it. He was so small and cute and dependent (and lighter).
Reuben 1 week old
Not that he isn’t now but he’s grown so much and is already much more independent. Last week he just seemed to grow up, he put himself to sleep twice in a row at bedtime (hasn’t done it since mind), he’s stopped needing the nipple shield during the day, he learnt to grab, he’s much more alert, etc. But although I miss the little newborn that kept me awake all night and wanted nothing more than to be on me all day, who couldn’t help but look forward to more of this baby…
3 months old with cousin Harry
I have to say the last 3 months have been a blur. They’ve whizzed by and also dragged. It was soooooo much harder than I thought it would be! Sleep depravation doesn’t sit well with me. Some people can do it but not I. Thankfully, a pattern is beginning to emerge and he is beginning to settle for longer at night and I am beginning to get more sleep so the days are beginning to get easier…I’d still love more opportunities to nap during the day but he’s just lovely.
In my desperate attempts to get some freedom back, aside from singing George Michael’s Freedom to Reuben, I’ve been trying lots of new things. Basically Ruby likes the booby. It’s his preferred method for going to sleep so aside from making it impossible for me to do anything other than feed all day, it doesn’t always work. He’ll eat until he falls asleep but if he is overtired he’ll keep eating until he’s sick.
I can see how all bad habits start here, in these early weeks when you’re gagging for a bit more sleep or time to sterilise your nipple shields or a moment to reheat that cup of tea and spread something on that toast you made 2 hours ago…that’s the limit of my ambitions at the moment. So, you resort to letting your baby fall asleep on your boob, or when that doesn’t work rocking and jiggling or, my worst habit but fill-proof technique for sleep, lying in bed feeding, all the while knowing full well I’m going to regret it in a few months time when I’m no longer a zombie and Rueben is dependent on these tricks for sleep…including in the middle of the night!
So, on one of those days when Reuben was coming up to 4 weeks old and refusing to go to sleep despite being desperate for it and all the tricks had been tried, I did it. I tried him with a dummy. I received a dummy via a giveaway on the Nuby Facebook page and thought I may as well try it. It certainly soothed him then, he was being held by his Grandad, but I find he doesn’t like it much when I’m doing it (he knows I’ve got the real deal) and he needs help to keep it in his mouth otherwise he spits it out.
There’s 2 schools of thought when it comes to dummies…the health visitor one which is dummies help the baby regulate their breath and so prevent cot death, and the baby expert (such as Gina Ford) one who say if your baby gets dependent on a dummy for sleep they’re going to need it every time they wake so say goodbye to having a full night’s sleep.
At the moment Reuben is full of snot at night so I’m having to feed/see to him most hours, sometimes for hours at a time; therefore, the thought of only having to get up to pop a dummy in his mouth sounds heavenly! But, I know I’ll be cursing myself in months to come.
The other alternative is to teach him to self-settle. I’ve done this a few times with limited success. I decided to try after reading a sleep book from my pal and mama of 2, Ania, during an all-nighter with the Reubster. The book, Save Our Sleep: Helping your baby to sleep through the night, from birth to two years, is all about getting your baby into a routine so it is content and you get sleep. Aside for being more regimented than the army, it stipulates that once you have fed, winded and changed your baby, you put your baby down awake for each nap so they can self-settle. It gives a reassuring step-by-step guide to how to do this including the certain cry you can listen out for. This is their protest cry, meaning they are fighting sleep/annoyed that you put them down so you are safe to ignore this and they will soon go to sleep. If the cry is continuous and doesn’t change in pitch then you should see to your baby as they are probably still hungry or need winding some more.
So, I tried this a few times, all the while crying myself, and it did work but I felt like a terrible person, which was confirmed by some of my loved ones. So, I gave up and have reverted to being trapped under my lovely baby while he feeds himself to sleep…which I don’t mind too much as I get lots of cuddles and get to watch back-to-back romcoms on the movie channel. However, this is going to get old when the washing stacks up and my bum starts to resemble the sofa…what should I do to get a bit of my day back?!
It’s three weeks since my due date and that gorgeous last date with Mike. I literally can’t believe how upside down our world has been turned by this little fella and not just practical things, like making sure I eat or being able to go to the toilet in piece and quiet, but emotional things too. I spent at least the first week feeling completely overwhelmed by how gorgeous he was. I’d look at him and start crying just because I thought he was beautiful, or I’d be singing him a song and cry during the nice bits!
Other than being totally knackered and crying at the slightest thing, I’m generally amazed at how little time I have. When he’s asleep the first thing I do is sleep too. If I’m not bothered about sleeping (which is hardly ever), I’m cleaning the breast pump, bottles and nipple shields (I’ll fill you in on my breast feeding success/failure in my next post) or trying to eat something. In the space of 3 weeks I’ve gone from eating like a normal person to a race horse. It’s bizarre.
I thought I’d have time/energy to start working out again! Pah! I thought I’d be able to manage my diet- lots of healthy protein, juices, etc. Double pah!
What has happened though is the bump (i.e. I wouldn’t go so far as to say my baby weight!) has started to go.
Here it is after 4days …
…and here it is after 2 and a half weeks.
And, today, complete with muffin top and camel’s toe, I have squeezed myself back into my topshop Jamie jeans (they’re a size 10 but they’re long and super stretchy so I think they’re more like a size 12 – plus in my hay day they were too big!)
Finally, now he’s safely here I can answer the big question…did I get any stretch marks?! No. Hooray!
Now I need to work on getting some muscle tone back in my belly and losing the baby weight. I’ve just got on the scales and I’m 10 kg lighter than I was 3 weeks ago, which is a result. But… I’ve got about 12kg left to lose to be at my ideal weigh, which is 8kg less than I was before I got pregnant! Something tells me it’s going to take considerably longer than another 3 weeks, especially since my cartoon boobs seem to be growing before our eyes. I should probably stop drinking whole milk too…But it tastes soooo good!
Other posts on stretch marks you might be interested in…
Well hello there! Welcome to my blog if you’re new here and if you’re a regular, welcome back! Today I thought I would reblog my Easy Pancake Recipe, which I first published here on the blog back in 2013 when Reuben was a mere year old. It’s been one of my most popular blogs, consistently […]
Just after Christmas (cripes – nearly a whole month ago!) Mike, the kids and I went on our first family skiing holiday to Chantemerle in Serre Chevalier! Despite never having skied before, I finally agreed to have a ski holiday under the condition that I could have some lessons in advance. The universe stepped in and […]
A year ago today I started a challenge; The castle challenge, where I aimed to see all the castles in Northumberland with Reuben and anyone else who cared to join us. Over the year, Reuben and I, and our motley crew of friends, family and people we didn’t know, visited over 40 castles. We saw […]