All the “Bs” – that’s what we’ve, decided to do with regards to parenting Hudson. I’ve spoken to Sam about gentle parenting too after reading a little bit about it and speaking to my sisters about their decisions too and we’ve decided to try and be as “gentle” as possible as he grows up. This doesn’t, however, stop the frustrated feeling I’ve been getting again recently at times. Another “B-word” – almost “boiling over” from “bloody” sleep deprivation!
Hudson’s sleep over the last week has been pretty broken during the night. Ah, another “B-word”! I use the word “broken” to describe his sleep rather than “bad” as frequent night waking is normal for breastfed babies. That’s actually a bit of an understatement really as it has been taking me a good while to get him to sleep no matter what time I take him up (not too abnormal for Hudson of late) but for the last 3…or is it 4, or 5(!)…nights he has been waking up SO much during the night, sometimes as often as every half an hour. *Groan*. And then he has often been restless and feeding on and off for 45 minutes-an hour, it’s like he’s newborn again. *Double groan*. On Tuesday night we had a tiny breakthrough – after finally getting him to sleep at 8pm-ish I decided to read for a bit in bed next to him only for him to start stirring at 9. I tried just putting my hand on his chest for a few minutes and he stopped stirring and went back to sleep, yay! This didn’t work for the rest of the night though.
After a few deep breaths…then a few more(!)…I remind myself that I am so pleased that we bed share and that I breastfeed as I can just move over a little and feed him within seconds of him stirring in the night and, eventually, he’ll drop straight back off to sleep. I couldn’t even think about getting out of bed and picking Hudson up out of a cot each time he woke during the night. My shoulders and back already ache enough from holding the little chunky monkey during the day!
I’m just hoping it’s just the dreaded Four Month Sleep Regression and that it’ll be over soon. Luckily he is still napping pretty well during the day so I can get some relaxing done or maybe do a few things round the house. On Tuesday I chose a nap after he woke up at 5:30am and yesterday I binge-watched Sex and the City whilst he slept in his pram in front of me!
Yesterday was a bit of a tough day in general as Hudson just seemed to cry all day. Proper, heartbreaking, full-on tears streaming down his face crying. Ok, maybe that’s a bit dramatic but it was so upsetting. He’d be ok for 10 minutes if I tried something else – singing, reading a book, playing, lying him down, picking him up – but then the crying would start again. I took him on two walks which seemed to help a bit and the baby carrier was a life saver on our second walk as I have finally mastered feeding him in the sling so he fed himself to sleep on our way home during our second walk.
When he was in the middle of the last Wonder Weeks developmental leap at about week 14/15 he had a complete aversion to being in the carrier, he would push against me and scream and refuse to calm down in it. It made me so nervous about taking him out anywhere as I always take the Tula carrier as my guaranteed way of keeping him calm if he gets sick of the pram which is inevitable. But during those 2-3 weeks it just didn’t work which also meant I could use it at home to calm him down or get anything done. For some reason Sam has never really liked the sling so he thought Hudson’s refusal to be in it was proof that he was right about it! Luckily Hudson likes it again as he loves looking around when we go for a walk either in the house or outside.
So I’m going to remember the benefits of our gentle parenting choices and try to take some calming breaths during this difficult time as it must be so hard for Hudson to be going through all of these changes at once.