Monday, January 21, 2013

This baby never sleeps...

If she were a city, she'd be NYC. Lately she just doesn't sleep. It used to be she'd fall asleep by 10 or 11 p.m. Once in a while, midnight at the latest. Then it kept getting later and later. 1 a.m. 2 a.m. Now it's 4 a.m. before she settles down. It's really tough on me because it means I get no break at all. I used to be able to get things done in the evening after she went to bed. Now by the time she settles down I'm exhausted and ready for bed myself. She either doesn't fall asleep at all or nods off for a few minutes and is up again. I'll rock her to sleep finally after an hour of lullabies and the instant I try to put her down she wakes up crying again.

She has always been active, somewhat hyper but now it's beyond anything I've ever seen. She's doing acrobatics in bed -- wriggling, rolling over and over, wiggling around, kicking. She just can't stay still, can't slow down. I cut out caffeine from my diet thinking it would help her sleep better. Instead it's had the opposite effect or maybe it's just a coincidence. I Googled "hyper at 5 months won't sleep" and read about other Moms going through a similar spell. So I hope it's just a phase and she calms down at some point. I'm hoping starting her on solid food shortly (at six months) will miraculously make her sleep through the night. I can dream! She's so hyper she's even started carrying on when I put her on the change table now. Sometimes it's like she's possessed. She's so restless she can't bear to be still for an instant. She goes ballistic until I distract her with puppets, songs and dances to make her laugh. At least she is a happy baby overall. She smiles, laughs and squeals in delight (at such a high pitch the cat runs for cover and my ears are still ringing. Even over the phone my Mom said it's so loud her ears were sore. "I've never heard a baby squeal like that!") She's very vocal. She's definitely found her voice and likes to show it off. "I am baby. Hear me roar!" She's started making a series of sounds da-da-ta-ta-ga-ga. I was hoping Mama would find it's way in there but I guess it's harder to say. I really don't want her saying Dada, as you can imagine! I know it's just the easiest sound to make. Sigh.

It's funny how you think things are challenging and then they get more so and you realize how easy you had it. In some ways I thought things were getting easier (at least she plays and entertains herself for a few moments now) but in other ways they are far more difficult. When she was a newborn she would sometimes go 3-4 hours through the night between feedings. Sometimes I even got to take a bubble bath at night. I had a couple of hours to work on the computer, do laundry etc. That pretty much stopped at 3-4 months. She has been feeding every 2 hours or less since then. Now it's gotten even worse. Sometimes she'll feed for an entire hour and then she sleeps for 10 minutes and is up again. Sometimes she's so hyper during a feeding even that she's trying to roll over and do stunts WHILE she's nursing, which let me tell you is no picnic for a nipple that's being twisted!

I was trying to do the 30 Day Shred to lose weight but had to give up on it since she wouldn't even sleep for the 20 minutes it took to do the workout. I got through the first week and got lucky other than her waking a couple of times before I was done so I raced to have a 1 minute shower (while she screamed. I feel guilty even letting her cry for a minute. I could never "leave her to cry herself to sleep" as some people suggest. I don't think she'd ever sleep. I think she would just cry forever. I can't do it. I'm at her beck and call.) before picking her up. But then she started waking up before I was even halfway through the workout. If I couldn't do it while she slept I thought I'd try to do it while she's awake. She's sometimes content to play on her play gym and jumperoo for 10 minutes or more. Maybe I could have her with me while I do the workout. It didn't quite pan out. At first she was entertained watching Mommy jump around like an insane person. She even giggled at me. But it got old pretty quick and she started to cry. So much for that idea. I decided to save the Shred for sometime in the future when (hopefully) I have at least half an hour to myself. I'll just try to do yoga or something that's not so regimented. Something I can do for a couple of minutes and stop and go back to if I need to. I was getting frustrated with the workout anyway considering I'd done it for almost two weeks and wasn't really seeing results. The last time I did it years ago I lost 20 lbs. Mind you I hadn't just had a baby back then. I started doing a few sit-ups and jumping around with Michelle while she's in her Jolly Jumper. Michelle enjoys that. She got a kick out of Mommy jumping too and laughed. I'm also trying to watch my calories now. I started keeping track of them. I realized I was taking in almost double the calories that I thought. Though I have been mostly eating healthy things I wasn't careful about portions. The nutritional info on foods gives you the calories for the ideal portion size -- a cup, quarter of a cup etc. Do you know how small that is?! I was sometimes eating 3 or 4 times that amount. Perfect example -- those little thin frozen pizzas. The box boasts that it's 150 calories a slice but if you're like me, you can end up eating the whole pizza (hey, they are small!) which is then 600 calories. Anyway, I think now that I'm more conscious of it it will make me more careful. I have been snacking on veggies in between meals because I know that they are mostly negative calorie foods (the calorie count is so low that you actually burn more calories by eating them than they actually have.)

As I mentioned in my previous post, my camera flash died recently, which is devestating for a photoholic with a baby! Though I could still take pictures in natural light that's no help for someone with a night owl baby who seems to have most of her energy at night. One night Ali (my grey tabby) jumped up on the couch with Michelle and it was so cute I just had to get a picture. I turned both the ceiling light and the floor lamp on hoping the incandescence would be enough. It wasn't. Michelle (who can't stay still for an instant) was wiggling around and wound up being a blur. It was frustrating. A cute moment that I couldn't capture. Sheer torture. Ali finally got fed up with Michelle kicking her (She's so hyper, the legs never stop going!) and left. Michelle had a grin a mile wide and I was determined to capture it somehow.

I decided to try some of the other photo modes on the camera that I'd never really used (I'm not very adventurous when it comes to things like that. I usually just point and shoot. I did use the night setting for fireworks before and the macro setting for flowers but aside from that, 99% of the time I had it in portrait mode.) So I fiddled around and tried the sport/action mode. Since Michelle wouldn't stop moving I figured that would be the most appropriate. It worked! To my delight I was able to get a few pictures of Michelle's big smile in sport mode. The photos weren't blurry though they did look a little different. The resolution wasn't as high. They were a bit grainy. As you can see they almost look like video stills. I didn't mind. It's better than nothing until/unless I can get a replacement camera.

I'm hoping this hyperactivity is just a phase she's going through and that she'll calm down somewhat although if I'm being honest she was hyper even in the womb. She was constantly kicking and moving around. The doctor got kicked every time she tried to listen for a heartbeat and the ultrasound technician had a hard time getting a good look at her she was moving so much. I can't even imagine what it will be like once she's walking (make that running!) around the house. I'm going to have to start really baby-proofing everything. I guess I won't need the 30 Day Shred. It will be an intense workout just keeping up with her!


  1. I really understand what you mean about not getting that precious time to yourself if Michelle doesn't go to bed early...we've been having sleep issues this week too & not having that hour or two I'm use to really is exhausting. Also like you I can't do the cry it out methods. It just rips my guts out when Elena cries!

    Hang in there...if there's one thing I've learned with this parenting gig, this to shall be replaced by something equally confusing or frustrating, lol :)

  2. Thank you for understanding! :)
    I guess there's no magical time when it gets easier. There will always be new challenges.

    She's asleep right now miraculously. Knock on wood. Maybe she's turning a corner...