Margo Blue // 4 months: So much for our groove!

Hey, 4 months! What the heck did I ever do to you?!

Man, I was so stoked during our 3rd month over how we had found our groove. Naps were beautiful at 1.5 hours to 3 hours long for the first two naps of the day, and a swift 30 minute nap in the early evening. Night sleep was tolerable, sleeping a solid chunk ranging anywhere from 4-6 hours followed by a feeding, then a smaller chunk of 2-3 hours. I was averaging 5-6.5 hours of total sleep (interrupted, of course) a night. It was doable. Armed with my morning cup of coffee, I was rested and caffeinated enough to take on each day.

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But then we entered month number 4 and everything changed. Like, over night.

Margo, thankfully, remained super easy to put down for her naps and for the night (that was never a problem). BUT…both morning and afternoon naps were drastically shortened. She’d wake up during every single nap between 35-45 minutes of being asleep! I’m assuming that she was concluding her sleep cycle and would just wake up, rather than put herself back to sleep and enter another cycle. I’d let her toss and turn for a few minutes, which was always followed by fussing and then crying. Waking up after only a half hour nap made for one cranky baby for the next few hours before the next nap.

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So…to preserve her naps to the best that I could, I’d rush in after a few minutes of restlessness and put the pacifier back in her mouth. I’d stay low so she couldn’t see me (the room is super dark thanks to light blocking drapes). I’d have the video monitor in hand with the volume down so that I could see (while ducked low) whether or not she took the paci or if it had fallen out. If it fell out and fussing continued, I’d pop up real quick when she would face the opposite direction, put the paci back in and duck back down. This would repeat (if necessary) for up to 20 minutes at times. Sometimes it only took 5 minutes to get her back to sleep. I’d sneak back out and keep my fingers crossed for at least another half hour of sleep. Usually, this worked and she’d nap for another hour or so. The same thing occurred again for the afternoon nap. This little game was so frustrating, tiring and confusing. What happened to my excellent napper??? The entire month carried out this way.

And what’s more, she began sleeping at night like crap, too. I had handfuls of nights when she’d wake up every hour to hour and a half, fussing. Again, I’d rush over to pop the paci back in, only to have her drift back to sleep for another hour or hour and a half. This kind of broken sleep was not cutting it for either of us! I’d wake up exhausted, cranky and defeated. But then I had handfuls of other nights when she slept through the entire night without even waking for a feeding. I was feeling like a first time parent, once again. Mia hardly ever gave us such sleeping issues. She was easy and predictable.

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By the very end of the month, I had had enough. I busted out the book “Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child” and read it from front to back over 2 days. Mia watched a lot of movies during that time. She wasn’t complaining. I just had to get through this book, get some answers and start something new to tackle Margo’s sleeping issues.

During the last week of the month (a few days ago), I initiated a sleep routine and hoped for the best. I actually did see results immediately, but since I haven’t been on this schedule for much time yet, I feel it’s too early to be handing out high-fives and recommendations. Month 5’s update will most definitely include details of my success or lack of it with Margo’s sleeping routine. Actually, if it’s successful then I’ll most likely write a separate post about it, so stay tuned.

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Some general details about Margo’s 4th month:

– A few nicknames I have for Margo: “Margs”, “Margalicious”, “Bobble Head” and “Bobbles” and “Bobs” (she’s got a big head!), and I’ve even called her “Large Marge”, even though I know “Marge” isn’t short for “Margo”. It just sounded good at the time.

– 3 month clothing is beginning to fit snug. 6 month clothing fits very comfortably.

– Still wearing size 1 diapers, but becoming a bit snug.

– Spit-up was at an all time high this month. We cut back her 6 oz bottles to 5.5 oz with each feeding which occurs every 3-4hrs. It seems to have helped, but just a little.

– Physical Therapy appointments are down to once a week. She had 2 sessions in a row where she didn’t scream or cry!

– She still sees a chiropractor 1 -2 times a week, although I think it’s time to stick to just one.

– Like mentioned above, nap durations were thrown off and night sleep was rocky. We lost our groove.

– Margo giggled on a handful of occasions. My friend, Kasia, got the first consecutive set of giggles out of her…aka laughing.

– She still smiles…like, all of the time. I just have to look at her and she’ll smile. Mia was the opposite. You could have danced, waved your hands, made the most ridiculous faces and sounds and you’d get nothing in return. But…let the dog walk by her and she’d be cracking up.

– I ventured on my first outing with both kids this month, other than the grocery store. I joined a friend and her daughter at the LA Zoo. All went really well, giving me confidence to attempt more outings.

– Margo is gaining more control of her hands each day. She’s doing well at grasping toys and bringing them to her mouth. She drops them after about a minute and then, of course, can’t easily coordinate her movements enough to grab them again. She gets frustrated and grunts or fusses when this happens repeatedly.

– We set up Mia’s old baby exersaucer for Margo. We stuff some towels around her mid section because she’s a little small for it but it keeps her entertained for at least 10-15 minute periods. Longer, if Mia is in sight of Margo and if she’s interacting with her. It helps keep her off of her head and forces her to balance her body more and to keep her head up and straight.

-I read the book, “Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child” in 2 days and began an actual sleep routine for Margo. Month 5 will reveal just how well it “works”.

– I began reading another book all about baby poop! Did you know that if it weren’t for bile, all poop would come out white?? Stay tuned for more info on the book. I received it for a review and am learning quite a bit.

– We gave baby wearing in our new Ergobaby carrier a try. We’ve only used it for short periods of time around the house but so far, Margo has responded well. She even dozed off in it once while Dad wore it outside doing some yard work.

– I traveled to Spokane, WA to visit a good friend who suffered a recent injury. I spent 4 nights away from home which was the longest amount of time that I had been separated from either of my children. I missed them dearly, especially when I would see other families with young children. I really didn’t think that I would, I thought that I would have loved the time to myself. I guess I’m more of a softy than I had thought.

– Margo’s overall temperament is good. It definitely continues to improve. I would still consider her to be a bit “needy” since she doesn’t do well in one spot for long at all. She gets bored, frustrated and lonely pretty quick and she requires a lot of attention from us to keep her entertained and happy.

– At the very end of the month we ventured on our first trip to the beach (Malibu) as a family of four. Let me tell you, beach days with a 4 month old sucks. Mia had a blast, but Mom was less than thrilled. Trying to keep sand off of a baby is not what I consider a good time. Neither is trying to put one down for a nap in the heat, sun and in a hole that I tried to dig in the sand (of course, a towel and blanket were placed over it. Poor thing just couldn’t get comfortable anywhere other than my arms. We decided on our way home that we definitely need a motor home.

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Comments

  1. Hi,
    Just read your comment on littlebabygarvin post. While am nobody to you I just thought of expressing my thoughts….
    You have such angelic babies… I loved them in pics on your blogs. I agree that living thru this chaos is definitely the most distressing job in the world but also the most rewarding… I have a 5 yr old & a 4 month old…. I wud just say that hold onto the phase… They grow too fast and the parental discords just blur their quick growth even faster than u can register in your heart! Just hang in there… In just a few years you will miss this chaos… And be very very proud of being so proficient in handling every single stuff of house n kids! All i want to do is send you a warm hug ! Every mommy needs it. Just feel the bliss these two bring to your life every second… Its not easy but its the best! Hugs & warm wishes!
    Nidhi

  2. Oh goodness… sorry things got harder again. I still get very jealous that your girls even take naps at all! Lyla hasn’t since she was like two weeks old! I started taking Lyla tot he beach about a month after she was born and I found the best thing was just bringing her little bouncy chair and a tent. I just had her sit in that and everything was good. I would hold her when I was feeding her and cuddling and then place her in the chair the rest of the time! I don’t know if you tried that but it worked so well for us and also Lyla loved the sound of the ocean, it lulled her right to sleep. Good luck with everything!

    • I truly couldn’t imagine my life right now without these two taking naps! Haha. No, but seriously. Just awful. Well, since Mia was always a great napper (and still is), I guess it was just “abnormal” for Margo to not be napping well. Had Mia never been great, I guess poor napping wouldn’t have really phased me as much. But I’m happy to say that for now, things are returning back to normal with our new sleep schedule. THANK GOD!

  3. Dear, me! How is it that your baby girl seems to get cuter & more precious every single month. I swear she looks just like the most beautiful porcelain doll in these photos, Misty. Oh, I just want to kiss those sweet cheeks! I’m sorry to hear about the sleeping troubles but I’m glad to hear about all of the other positive progress!! I’m sending lots of love & wishes your way that the sleep stuff smooths out soon. Look forward to hearing more about the sleep routine if you see a lot of lasting change from it. Love, love.

    P.S. Have you started thinking about Halloween costumes yet? Or am I the only loony toon thinking that way ready? ;)

    • Thanks, Dena! I definitely have to catch her for a little “photo shoot” when she’s having a good hair day (within a day after a bath) otherwise her hair is outta control! And as of now, it’s been a little over a week that I’ve been putting the sleep routine into use and we’re definitely seeing great results. I’m almost done writing up the main points of the book I read for a friend of mine, and I’ll email it to you as well. I don’t know if it goes against your parenting style or not, so do with it what you will. AND….are you kidding?? I ABSOLUTELY have been thinking about costumes. Have been for a few months!! I’m 75% certain that we’ve got our theme picked out already. I really want to reuse the handmade owl costume that I made for Mia at 6 months old, for Margo (she’ll be same age at Halloween)…so we’re all going to be “Birds of a Feather”. I’m a flamingo, Mia is a peacock, Margo’s an owl and Dominic’s not sure if he wants to be a bird watcher or a Toucan! Ha!

  4. Pack and plays! I used to take mine everywhere.. lakeside, beach, riverbank.. perfect and easy set up for naptime! I think M lived sleeping in that thing for a good portion of her baby years. Kept the sand/dirt off of her and another space besides moms arms. Even with an RV it was nice to be able to have it outside with us and her contained or napping in the fresh (shaded) air. :))

    • Dang…shoulda coulda woulda. Didn’t even think of that. Haven’t even unpacked ours yet from out of the closet! Next time. Thanks for the tip, dear :)

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