13 weeks! 13 weeks!? How can this be??
Apologies for not updating sooner- each week I make a mental-note that I need to blog but the last few weeks have been MEGA busy, and when we have had downtime it’s been nice to do nothing but watch ‘The Walking Dead’ or enjoy the recent good weather.
I cant believe how much Ava changes each week, even day to day. I knew I would love her endlessly, care for her always to the best of my ability but I didn’t realise how FASCINATING I would find her. I could watch and play with her for hours and talk about her for days. When I didn’t have a child, I did find other people who talked about their babies quite boring, if I’m honest. I mean, there’s really nothing interesting in how many times your baby’s poo’d today, or how their feeding is going. But it IS interesting. Still, I do try not to talk too much about Ava to my friends who haven’t had babies yet. Well, at least not her poo and feeding!
So here’s a few things that have changed in the last few weeks:
Ava can now-
-Sit up well with the aid of my nursing cushion, and can do a few seconds unaided
-Loves her jungle gym
-grabs toys with one or both hands, brings them to her mouth
-Loves to see
herself her friend in the mirror
-Will chat to ANYTHING. Her toys on the jungle gym, vases of flowers and mugs!
-has two and three syllable coo’s, blows bubbles and pokes her tongue out
-is reluctantly getting better at tummy-time, and has attempted to roll to her front.
Ava had a little formula in her first few weeks, mainly as top-up in hospital as she was so tiny, but she also had awful colicky symptoms and reflux so we stopped all formula at week five and until last week she has been exclusively breastfed. However at three months she has been waking three to four times a night and feeds two hourly in the daytime. This, combined with my plan of returning to work for some agency shifts next month and a few events planned where she would be staying at my mums overnight meant that I was completely exhausting myself expressing morning and night to add to my freezer supply. I would get up at 5.30am to express before her feed and then again late at night. The lack of sleep and physical exhaustion really was getting me down. After a few days of really struggling with the idea I decided to start introduce some formula. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t believe there’s anything wrong with formula AT ALL. I’m pro-feeding, not pro-breastfeeding. It’s just that Ava was SO uncomfortable in the beginning and had fed and slept better with me being dairy-free too, so I was half expecting her to have some transient cows milk protein allergy or lactose intolerance.
As it was, we started by mixing one ounce of formula with 3 of breast, and slowly increased the amount. Ava now has one formula at night, usually the first feed at around midnight, which Andrew does. This means I don’t have to use frozen breast milk for this feed (therefore not reducing my ‘back to work’ supply) and I can get a few hours of unbroken sleep before the 3-4am feed. It also means Andrew gets to feed Ava, too. After two nights of some grunting and waking more regularly Ava has taken to it really well. I was half hoping she wouldn’t like it, but she guzzled it down!
Apparently, ‘Sleeping through’ for babies is more than five hours. With this in mind, Ava has probably ‘slept through’ from about 7 weeks. She goes to sleep around 7.30-8pm, and wakes usually around 12am-1am and then 3am-4am for a feed. Then usually wakes around 7-8am. Obviously one day (I hope!) she’ll sleep through, and I’m hoping she’ll drop the 3-4am feed soon, but for a baby that’s still only 11lbs and catching up on her percentiles this isn’t bad at all. Oh, and formula makes no difference to her sleep/waking up times!
We so fortunate that she settles amazingly well. We have done a bedtime routine right from week three, and she is brilliant and settling herself. We have a bath around 6.30, a story and feed and then I put her down in her basket sleepy but still awake, with her little toy bunny. She is soon fast asleep!
We have just started doing daytime naps in her big cot, although she’s not really getting the idea, yet. We’ll try again next, week perhaps. I still like having her close to me at night, for now.
Hope you’re all well!
Until next time