Jul
13
2009

  Getting W On A Schedule

Now that William has slept through the night once on his own, I'm getting him on a schedule.

I've had enough of Terry handing me a screaming baby just two hours afters I fed him, insisting that I feed him because he's "obviously starving." No, he's not.

Terry's been sick for a few days (nothing serious, his usual malingering since he's got a runny nose), so I'm taking the opportunity to get William on a schedule without any interference. Since he DOES cry a bit when I don't feed him every two hours now.

I'm using the Baby Whisperer's schedule, and once I get W on a stable 3-hour schedule, I'll start to transition him to a 4-hour schedule (the book shows how to tweak the schedule in five steps, three days per step). He should be on a 4-hour schedule by the time he's sixteen weeks old, and he's 13 weeks old now.

I started his "training" yesterday, but today was the first full day on the new schedule. He wakes at 7am and bedtime is 7:30pm. And he takes 1 1/2 hour naps during the day. The main reason we got off the schedule in the daytime in the first place is because he wakes up from his naps when he gets a dirty diaper, which is usually between 45 min and 1 hour. So then he's fussy and I feed him. NO MORE! Now I help him fall back to sleep after the diaper change, and feed him on schedule.

And I don't know WHAT Terry was doing getting him up multiple times per night! The situation we worked out was that Terry got W when he fussed, changed his diaper, then brought him to me to feed. But since I've been sleeping alone in the room with W, he's been sleeping straight through! I suspect Terry was picking him up and changing his diaper anytime W made the slightest whimpering sound in his sleep. I don't hear any of that because of the noise from my sleep machine, I only hear if he actually cries. Which he hasn't done until after 6am.

I have asked Terry to not interfere, and to re-read the Baby Whisperer book to see that a THIRTEEN-week-old baby is not going to starve if fed every three hours or less, in the daytime only. W is actually taking much better feeds now. He's more focused and has a better appetite. I guess we were making him snack too much before, instead of eating full meals.

A set schedule is going to make my life easier, I'm sick of this "on-demand" business that Terry has been pushing. And no more letting the baby fall asleep next to us in bed in the morning! ALL sleep and naps will be in his cradle until he's used to the schedule, then I'll branch out and see if he'll sleep in his car seat, etc.

Terry empathizes with his brother-in-law when he suggests that Terry's sister is a softie, but really, Terry seems just as bad. While I appreciated Terry's help up until recently, lately it's been very difficult when he gets W all riled up so he can't sleep, and then demands that I feed him. Since I've been taking care of William myself (just since yesterday), it's actually been a little easier. I'm dealing with more crying, but I don't mind, I know it's just because William is frustrated by the change. He'll grow to appreciate a more stable routine. And I will be able to leave the house without him!! And there's a nice gap from his bedtime a 7:30pm until I give him his "dream feed" at 11pm. I think I will convince Terry we can find a sitter capable of watching him WHILE HE'S SLEEPING. And I'm going to get this going before the whole "separation anxiety" thing I keep reading is coming up in a few months.

During the day, when William is consistently waiting three hours between feedings, that gives me 2.5 hours between when one feed ends and the next begins. Enough time to run into Crozet, at least. And in a few weeks, he'll be on a 4-hour schedule. With 3.5 hours between feeds, I can go into Cville and run errands without him. Hallelujah! I am getting mighty tired of wearing the same couple outfits. I actually am satisfied with my "dress up" clothes in my current size, but it's annoying having only two pairs of shorts that fit for around the house

I'm hosting Bunko tomorrow, which means I have to prepare dinner for 12. Terry said he'd go grocery shopping for me in the morning so I won't have to take W off-schedule. But the last time I sent Terry out with a list (before the baptism), he came back without getting everything on the list. Not because he couldn't find something, he would've told me that and I could've moved onto plan B. No, he said he got everything, said he checked the list twice before he checked out. But he forgot something anyway, and I didn't find out about it until I went to the pantry to get it for the meal that was ALREADY ON THE STOVE. I really had to wing it.

SO, I'm going to send him to the Sam's Club to get just TWO items (well, three, but one is not for the dinner). For the rest, I just tried out the drive-by grocery thing from Harris Teeter. I went online, put everything I needed into my virtual cart, and selected a time for pickup (I picked a time that will not throw off W's new schedule). The instructions say I drive up to someplace on the outside of the store, I press a button, and someone loads the groceries into my car. I don't even have to get out! W can stay in the car seat! Genius, Harris Teeter, pure genius. Normally there is a $5 fee for this convenience, but since we've got a brand-new store, they're waiving it through the end of this month. I'll find out tomorrow if the system really works. A friend of mine has used it at a different location, and says it's well-worth the $5.