Must Resist Urge to Read Sleep Book...

...but I couldn't resist googling "normal sleep for four month olds" at 2:20am, while nursing Laurel who had just nursed at midnight, and would be up again at 4:45. And 6:00.

Should not have done that. Previously I was unaware of the four month sleep regression. Although, most of the women posting about this seemed to have babies who slept all night at three months. I don't know if I feel more sorry for them, who had a good night's sleep and then lost it, or for me, who hasn't really slept a good stretch in longer than I care to think about. Laurel is not really regressing. She just gets up every few hours. It's her nature. My pediatrician says this is totally normal. I still wish for the kind of baby you see on television that sleeps all night. Or the kind of baby that the sleep experts say you can teach to sleep all night. Laurel isn't having any of that.

I made M take Laurel at 6 so I could sleep. A little something to take the edge off of that gripping fatigue that reminds me of hangovers in college. He passed her back at 7 for yet more nursing, swaddled up tight like a wiggly caterpillar. Now she's peacefully sleeping, while I sip decaf tea. Too tired to be productive, but kind of happy to have the excuse to sit in my robe with sunbeams streaming in the window.

I need to cut my addiction to this baby rhetoric. It's so polarizing. Yesterday, my mom and I went for a walk with Laurel in the stroller and I kept thinking about those La Leche League ladies from my neighborhood and what they would think if they drove by and saw my poor daughter in her isolation pod. I got props from them for bringing her to the last meeting in the Moby Wrap, which I love, but can't I also love the stroller? Is it ok to breastfeed because I find it more convenient than mixing up bottles, and not because I'm looking to establish some magical nursing relationship with my kid? Frankly, I think we might have a deeper relationship without the breastfeeding...I think all she sees is a 24 hour milk bar when she looks at me.

I would like to state for the record that I sleep much better when Laurel is in her crib, aka the baby cage, than when we co-sleep. And (gasp!) I let her watch tv sometimes. She likes the blinky lights, and frankly, I've been skeptical of any neuroscientist that says things are good or bad based on MRI studies since I read about this one.

There's a lot of money in telling new parents what they ought to be doing with their babies. I just finished reading Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child, right after I read the No Cry Sleep Solution, on the heels of the Happiest Baby on the Block.

Every time I pick up a new book, I think, "Ah, this book must have the secret."

It never does.

And you know what, I still have a pretty darn happy baby, even though she wakes up all night.


Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

I think you have a happy baby because she has wonderful parents -- wonderful PATIENT parents who will see her through this sleep adjustment period. I suspect she sees more than a milk bar in her mom.

If Laurel is not unhappy in her stroller, who can criticize? What is an isolation pod?

Love, Aunt Mary

k said...

Whoever hiker was who left that message...thank you!

And Aunt Mary, an isolation pod is a stroller...and yes, some people really do call them that and would criticize my parenting skills for using one.

Betty Giles said...

You're welcome! Beach Bum & First Wife