Tuesday, May 20, 2008


During the early days, I spent a lot of time thinking about breastfeeding. For this “natural” experience there are lactation consultants, breastfeeding resource centers, and a wealth of other materials. Doesn't sound very natural to me.
But what if you choose to use formula or have to use formula? I haven’t come across any bottle feeding consultants.

And here’s the benefits they don’t tell you about the bottle (this doesn't minimize the benefits of breastfeeding):
You know how much the baby is eating
Anyone can give the baby a bottle, even in the middle of the night
Depending on your own comfort level, it may be easier to give your baby a bottle in certain situations

I also learned that the advice that newborns need to eat every two hours is somewhat of a myth. What they don't tell you is that that is a fuzzy two hours, it could be every half hour, every hour, and if you're lucky every three hours. Some infants participate in what is called cluster feeding, during this time, eating every 30-60 minutes is not out of the question. Plus, you are supposed to start timing from the time the baby starts eating. Well my son could easily eat for 40 minutes, that means as soon as he was done, I needed to start thinking about feeding him again. Breastfeeding is really hard and exhausting.

Sleep (written during week 5)

Right now sleep seems like the most appropriate place to start, since that is what I am missing the most these days.

1. Once the exhaustion really kicks in, if he will sleep 3 or 4 hours at night between feedings, who am I to wake him?

2. Newborns are really noisy. We started out with our son sleeping in a small portable crib next to our bed. What that means is that every time he flails his arms, changes his breathing pattern, grunts, or coos (which is quite enjoyable during the day), I was awake and hovering. Does he need to eat? Does he need his diaper changed? On his 1 month birthday I decided I needed more sleep and he should sleep in his room, that way I wouldn’t hear his every move. Well that worked like a charm and he has been sleeping in his own room, in his crib ever since. As it turns out, not only was he keeping me up, but apparently I was disturbing his sleep as well because he has been sleeping like a champ. I learned that all that hovering wasn’t good for either of us.

3. Checking to see if the baby is still breathing
Babies have immature systems and that means their breathing patterns change from heavy and fast (sort of like a 90-year-old man) to slow and quiet. So of course you check to see if baby is still breathing because a minute ago you could hear him from the other room now you can’t hear him at all.

A real live blog

About a year and a half ago, a colleague and friend suggested I start a blog about parenting - what it's really like. As someone with a degree in human development, he thought it would be "fun" to blog about what it's really like, all the things they leave out of the books. With great intentions, I started a blog, well sort of. I started to blog in a word file - at the time my son was only 4 weeks old and I was too tired to actually figure out how the blog worked. Well, those good intentions got lost and now 16 months later I'm finally starting to get my act together and have started a real live blog! I'm going to start by blogging about the first few months of parenthood - yes, I'm pulling out those old word documents.

And, I have invited a good friend to blog with me. She is the parent of a teenager. So here we go.....parenting live! toddlers and teens.