Tuesday, March 22, 2011

One month doctor's visit

So Jack had his one month appointment at the pediatrician's and we were excited to get his current stats and see how much he's grown. He went there without protest, asleep, peaceful, not knowing what he was getting into.

Unfortunately the minute we got there the nurse had us strip him down to weigh and measure him. The hard, cold scale was met with screams and flailing so she could barely get an accurate weigh-in. Then when we transferred him to the table to measure his length, he decided to protest by peeing all over the table and himself. John and I agreed that it was the most he had ever pee'd. He was swimming in it. The nurse didn't seem fazed at all. But we got his current measurements:

Height - 22 inches - 75th percentile (up from the 25th percentile at birth)
Weight - 9 pounds, 9 ounces - 50th percentile (same percentile as at birth, up two pounds)

We were very excited that he seemed to be growing well. The doctor came in and started examining him. He got fussy, started to cry. He really wasn't showing her his best side but I hope the doctor didn't judge too much. Next came the nurse with a big needle. It was time for his first vaccine. I had a hard time watching as John held his hand and the nurse came at his little pink thigh with her needle. As I turned I heard Jack let out a bloodcurdling scream that was not pretty. I think the needle and scream hurt me more than it hurt him. He kept crying and crying thought eventually we were able to soothe him. Man, that was hard though. I can't believe the next appointment he has to get three shots. Sad.

The doctor asked us different questions and we described life with Jack, including his nighttime sleeping routine. She said she thought he should be sleeping more than 2 hours at a time at night. Well, I agree. That would be nice. She wants us to try to establish a nighttime routine and put him down in bed while he's still awake. And possibly let him cry for a few minutes. She's not suggesting hardcore sleep training. But this seems like it'll be too hard for me and too hard for a 4 week old. Am I crazy? What have other moms done with babies this age?


  1. ok that seems totally crazy to me. But our Leo is still not reliably sleeping 6 hours straight yet (at 7 months).

  2. congrats on the good growing!!

    "drowsy but awake" say the doctors and the books; "drowsy then AWAKE and furious" says violet. but it can't hurt to try! if you're just getting grunts, solo cries, and cranks though, maybe try letting it go a bit? i was definitely over responding in the earliest days, and sometimes she would just go back to sleep (or not actually be awake) without intervention.

    at 4 weeks, i was still feeding on demand all night, but i'm still doing it at 6 months (with sleep stretches of 4, 2, 2, 2 hours in general), so i have no advice on cultivating good habits.

  3. oh! i wanted to add that we have done the nighttime routine thing since jack's age, and that has yielded good results at this point. we do bath, diaper, pajamas in a dim room on the changing table, nurse to sleep, and she goes down like a ton of bricks now (though there was a long period where a lot of rocking was required). probably dumb luck, but i thought it was worth a mention.

  4. Nurse to sleep? Yeah, that's basically what we're doing but the doc said don't nurse to sleep. But they're not dealing with a cranky infant. I think we'll try establishing the same routine every night and see where that gets us.

    And we don't pick him up at every little whine and noise. You know me...I'm too mean for that. ;-)

  5. I would suggest doing the whole "EASY" thing that Tracey Hogg talks about and see if that helps with his night sleeping. So, instead of nursing him to sleep all day, have him "Eat", be "Active" (change the diaper after feeding, play with toys), then Sleep (the Y is for You time). That, coupled with a bedtime routine, might be why Johnny slept from 8pm to midnight after doing this routine for awhile.

    However, I would caution you about becoming a "human pacifier." I had only six full nights of sleep in Johnny's first nine months of life (when we finally sleep trained) because he needed the boob to sleep. He'd wake up at midnight and then need to nurse to get back to sleep because that's how I always calmed him. (We even moved a twin bed into his room so I could sleep in there from midnight to morning and he could nurse every 60 to 90 minutes.) Since Jack is so young, I would try everything possible to get him back to sleep before giving him the boob to avoid an association. Yes, it's painful because he'll cry a little, but remember that babies also cry to calm themselves down sometimes. As long as you or John is there and trying other things (rocking, bouncing, singing, white noise, whatever) you're not abandoning him. If you can stretch the feedings to more than two hours, then you should get more sleep out of him. Believe me, I've read every baby sleep book known to man and this is the best advice any of them have to offer.

    Or maybe our kids just aren't good sleepers. Damn those genetics.

  6. as i think taryn said earlier, everything changes on the sleep front anyway. for awhile i didn't nurse to sleep, until i did. i didn't used to bring her into bed at 4am, but now i do. when i was reading all the sleep books, i'd be totally convinced that i was going to develop good habits, but i'm now very "i'll cross that bridge when i come to it." just like you said, the books and doctors aren't dealing with a cranky infant.

    btw kelly, that's rough on the human pacifier front! i can swap a nip out for a paci, thank freaking god. you're a champ.

  7. ha! i love how i have so much to say about this! i just thought of a funny anecdote from my mom. i said, "mom, the books say not to nurse or give a bottle to sleep." she said, "what, why not? i always gave you a bottle to sleep, and then once you could hold it yourself, i'd leave it with you and then come grab it after you fell asleep." and i was like, "what about when i got teeth? didn't you brush them? that's what the books say to do!" she just laughed. (and i've never had a cavity.)

  8. Oh...I feel like I can weigh in on this...trying to "sleep train" a 4 week old(even if it isn't hard core training) is crazy making to me. Babies aren't old enough or mature enough to fend for themselves:( They need their mom! And...I say this over and over...books and doctors DON'T know your baby. Moms know their babies best and you just have to try everything and get creative. Nothing is off limits. I also agree with Stacey...just when sleep gets better, they get teeth, and then they get sick, and sleep patterns just keep on changing! Just when you settle into one routine...the bastards switch it up on you. Lisa, I think you do what you feel your Jack needs and probably that is feeding on demand. Did I say too much?????