I really didn't know if any of this would work. Doing this method of sleep training, after reading so many different books, feels sort of trying the latest wacky diet.
But stage one, getting her to eat every four hours during the day... was remarkably easy today and yesterday. The book says to encourage her gently, but not to let her get to the point of crying hard. And today, for each feeding, I had to wake her up after four hours! Of course, she was in the Beco all day because we were at the Single Mothers by Choice 30th Anniversary celebration all day. it sucks her in! she can't resist its charms and passes out. though i thought she might stay up for a while in the late afternoon, which the book recommends (though we are not at that stage yet). anyway, yeah, i would definitely not have thought she could do it! so who knows what tomorrow will bring.
She cried off an on in the crib for an hour last night (mostly not crying, with little periods of fussing -- no hard crying), then slept for five and a half hours! Meanwhile I slept on the couch because I was nervous that she would smell me if I was in the bedroom with her. Then I gave her a bottle of breast milk when she woke up (recommended by the book for the stage when we start decreasing night feeds... not yet... but I was curious to see how much she would take). She only took two and a half ounces and then was restless for a bit. I didn't really let her cry in the crib at that point because I was nervous about bothering the neighbors, so I put her in the swing. Then she slept another four and a half hours until I woke her!
It's all perplexing. How cooperative she is, so quickly!
Oh, and twice she has fallen asleep on her playmat when I couldn't put her to bed because I was busy... totally unswaddled, on her back, once without a diaper or pants on! Totally unlike her. Perhaps she's getting used to the idea that being on her back is a way to sleep!
The hardest thing right now is that I'm a little sad that I will only get to nurse her four times a day when she's on this schedule. I love our nursing time, and it's pretty brief as it is -- she a power-per-hour eater. Of course, now the feedings are a little longer, at least, since she has to eat more to last four hours.
i've also decided to start bathing her every night, instead of the odd morning, to help build an evening routine. we are enjoying that. we have a little bath seat that goes in the kitchen sink. once she gets bigger I have a baby tub to put in the regular tub, but for now, it's nice to have her at a comfortable height.
after her bath, and admittedly, a tiny additional feed to make sure she was full (6 minutes), she went right to sleep in the crib. she squawked once, so i knew meant the pacifier was out, but since silence prevailed after that, I decided not to interfere. it's been quiet ever since! when i go to check on her, she's moving her head back and forth a lot, but not fussing, so I'm leaving her be. not sure if she's a restless sleeper or still awake, but i'm trying not to get in the way of her process, regardless. it's hard! i want to swoop in and be the mighty rescuer.
in other news, i pottied her or else put her on the toilet in the ladies room (when we were at the SMC 30th Anniversary Celebration -- an inspiring event, meeting so many cool women, and hearing the stories of the SMC pioneers... brought tears to my eyes!) as she was waking up, and she peed each time. we also "caught" (EC parlance) a poo on the potty this evening. i'm not sure if we are truly communicating yet, i think it's mostly timing, but she's definitely peeing in her diapers a lot less -- they are nearly dry when she wakes up. it's nice to know that I'm saving her from sitting in some wet and dirty diapers. once, last weekend, she starting this groaning cry, and I put her on the potty, and lo and behold, she did have to poop. i'm hoping we see more of that type of actual communication. plus the pulling off the breast when she needs to poo is me understanding her cues, but it's not intentional on her part just yet.
i'm so excited to see what happens with daycare assisting in the EC effort!
Liberty Mutual, my employer's FMLA administrator, has now agreed that I'm entitled to FMLA until November 7th. I still want to be out until November 28th, 12 weeks after I was due to return to work after my normal summer off. At least they are not calling me to ask why I am not at work this week. That is unbearably stressful. Still, I'm frustrated to have to continue battling this. At least I'm no longer thinking of quitting my job at the moment... I was so fed up I contemplated it a few days ago.