As we entered the second month of life with baby, we’d moved past some of the more stressful aspects of caring for a newborn. For one, she’d stopped crying so much. I forgot to mention this is my One Month update, but she would not sleep by herself for those first few weeks. She’d fall asleep in our arms and a few short moments after we put her down (in the small crib we keep in our bedroom) – the screaming would commence in earnest.
Two things changed in the second month. First, we’d figured out how to deal with her gas and the slight acid reflux she was having which required us to keep her upright for at least 30 minutes after a feeding. Second, we tried the swaddle again. This is crucial. When we first brought her home, we had tried to swaddle her but she fussed and cried so much we figured she didn’t like it. Looking back, I think, partially, the crying she was going to happen regardless because she was, duh, a newborn. But I also suspect she was too tiny for the swaddle we were using. Our baby was born 6 lbs which isn’t teeny but its on the smaller side. By her second month she’d gained enough weight where the swaddle could probably hold her in. We use the ones by SwaddleMe (which we purchase on *Amazon).
Most newborns just sleep whenever they need to, with no real concept of day and night. Our baby was no different. Waking at all hours of the night. Eventually, I knew (hoped) it would get better but I also wanted to do what I could to help the situation along. It may seem crazy to have tried this so early, and I by no means expected for us to have a firmly established routine so soon, but I wanted to begin to at least nurture the beginnings of one. So we experimented. Mr. Bear and I tend to go to bed at around 11:00 p.m. We didn’t know what would be more ideal – putting her down “for the night” earlier than we go to bed (around 8 ish) or closer to when we go to bed. For the night is in quotation marks because we were, of course, trying to train her to do this. She was not sleeping through the night at this point.
Anyway, we tried both. Being very much sleep deprived, we opted to try for the later bed time first. We’d dim the lights in the bedroom, make sure it was a nice, cool temperature, that she was warmly dressed and feed her at around 10:00 p.m. She’d nod off around 10:30 p.m. Mr. Bear and I would drag ourselves to bed shortly thereafter. Those first few nights she woke up for a feeding around 2 a.m. – after a week she’d sleep until 4 a.m. sometimes! It was great but after a while we realized that we needed some time to ourselves in the evening – to maintain sanity and all. So we switched to the 8 p.m. bedtime. She’d wake up at 1:00 a.m. and then again 5:00 a.m. for feedings. To our surprise and delight, a few weeks in and she was only waking up once at around 3:00 a.m.
Doesn’t she have the cutest little feet? And to think they were much smaller than this only a short time ago – I can’t believe that! I did buy her some newborn crib shoes which she never wore. A tip for new parents – don’t buy newborn shoes. They’ll never wear them. Several other new parents I know have also confirmed this. Anyway, back to the topic of this post: sleep – which is so important. Well-rested parents make for happy parents and happy baby. 🙂 Amazingly, by the end of month two, we’d been successful in establishing “our routine”. I’m no fool. I know that certain events in the future (teething, behavioral changes, travel, just because) may disrupt this routine. But so far, so good!
Until next time, then? Side note, you guys know I’m playing catch up here. I hope to have my month three life with baby update posted sooner rather than later.
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