Two Months of Olive
April 2012, by Gini
Has it only been two months? It feels a lot longer! We are discovering Olive's personality and that sometimes it just doesn't make sense so just accept it. Olive so far (fingers crossed) has been a good night sleeper. In the early days I had to wake her! Both our parents say to never wake a sleeping baby but in this case we had to as she had a little jaundice and was so new! Her night sleeping has slowly emerged into her own routine, so we never should have worried about it so early on! She cluster feeds for a few hours with a luxury bath with Dad at 6pm followed by dessert before bed, she climbs (very advanced) into her cocoon and all going well into bed by 7.30 plus or minus 30mins.
Well that is her routine now, but leading up to it was lots of interesting nights of unexplained crying.
I do remember one particular night were she just wouldn't settle, it took 3 extra feeds from bed and finally by midnight she went to sleep land. At that point both Tom and I were thinking OMG, what have we done! and she never did it again (fingers still crossed)!! She has also made it into the mother bed a few times out of sheer desperation to get her to sleep longer.
We had to get our heads around feeding, sounds simple enough, right? Well not as simple as it should be. I think it took a good 6 weeks before my milk came in and lets just say Olive wasn't kind on mummy's docking station. With a few Mexican hats and weeks later Olive and I started to get the hang of it. She didn't gain her birth weight after two weeks and the midwife set us off in a bit of a tail spin, mentioning formula topups and expressing to help with milk supply. One industrial sized cow milking device later (I have a new respect for the milk we drink!) a few tears, thinking Kate was right - breastfeeding is far harder than labour - we persevered and stopped reading books which only made me feel bad if I wasn't text book material and started eating better foods for the quality of the milk. It still makes me feel good when Olive finishes with full cream dripping from the corner of her mouth looking drunk on milk.
Tom mastered the burping, there is something about larger hands and the mission to get the burps out seems to work for men! After Jen lent us the Dungston baby language DVD we started listening Olive's different cries. The ehehehehhe sounds was wind, but after a few weeks of burping her after every feed she sort of grew out of it. She often gets two burps out over my shoulder after feeding and is done and of course the other end too!
The next type of cry was for hunger. We finally started hearing the neh neh. In the first weeks we weren't sure if she was getting enough food, as she often would fall asleep while feeding, but after a month of so the only neh neh nehs we heard was just before feeding time at the zoo. I do remember in the early weeks, Tom's favourite saying was 'I think she is hungry' which drove me a little crazy at times.
The last type of cry we started hearing was tired cry. Owo Owo we hear that a lot. Which seems to fit as she hasn't been a great daytime sleeper. It is a fine line to catch Olive just before she is over tired, still working on that one! We stressed for weeks (still do) that she didn't make up her 15 or so hours of sleep in a 24 hour cycle, again silly books to blame. We soon picked up on movement, car rides, rocking in the car capsule, buggy walks all helped her drift off to sleep. Now we totally understood why other parents drove around at 2am to get their baby to sleep! It hasn't got to that for us yet though!
Trying to get Olive to sleep paved the way for a routine walking around the park and as I started to feel better the surrounding neighbourhoods. She used to sleep for a good hour to an hour and a half but the minute you stepped foot back in the house she woke up. We figured it must be the outside noise just suddenly stopped but it could also have been the end of her sleep cycle. We also started using rain water white noise in our bedroom next to her bassinet as it helped so much in the buggy, we thought we could recreate the same experience for her. She hated the bassinet - period. Even walking into the room with her in your amrs she would start to cry, cradling her horizontal she would cry so for weeks we would buggy, car, cafe noise, so she was a busy socialite in the early days only in the name of sleep of course.
Tom successfully got Olive to sleep a few times in her bassinet around week 9 with a lot of rocking, loud white noise, darken room, swaddling again and shushing. It wasn't easy, there were tears, mostly mummy's but also Olives. It was so hard because we knew she was tired by displaying all the tired signs and just couldn't settle herself and all we wanted to do was help!
As the weeks passed we started to notice she was filling out her triple zero onesies and started to notice us, by following us around the room, and the most rewarding the smiling! We started having interesting conversations in the last week or so too. When you see her everyday, sometimes you just don't notice how quickly they are growing! I have to admit she still isn't even both her Alex cousins birth weight yet! Now that is a scary thought!
We have been so touched by everyone's love and support in welcoming little Olive into our lives. Olive has been so spoiled by all the lovely cards, words of support and beautiful gifts. If it wasn't for some of the lovely pink outfits baby Olive would have missed out on pink! Tom has accepted that pink and pink hearts are cool. We enjoyed the delicious food we were given in the early weeks which was so needed and appreciated.