Thursday, 31 August 2017

Four months of Rowan

Month four was the toughest month so far. Rowan's sleep was the worst it's been since we got him; childcare was next to non-existent as we'd pulled Joseph out of both nurseries, Granny had visitors and was poorly, then Ruari also went camping for three nights / four days... so it has been mostly me and the two boys finding our grooves / surviving!

Rowan went from doing anything from four up to eight-hour stretches of sleep at night to, instead, waking to feed every three hours - which I shouldn't complain about as I know others have it worse - but it was an exhausting shock to the system as I'd have little energy in the morning for Joseph. I'm hoping that's the four month sleep regression come early and that it's not going to get any worse.

Joseph and I started off well by doing crafts or painting each day and trying to avoid TV as much as possible, to accepting that the TV has to go on if I am to get myself washed and dressed / get Rowan down for his nap / keep on top of the laundry and housework / stay remotely sane. We did introduce a rule of not having it on before 9am though - and I've just started telling him that I'll get in trouble if he watches too much of it. I tend to just let him watch it whilst Rowan is feeding / napping and then sometimes again whilst I make dinner. Joseph doesn't sit there entirely like a couch potato though, well I guess he does for the most-part, but it's more there for comfort whilst he does puzzles (his current favourite thing to do) or builds things from Duplo it seems.

Rowan's been in his own room for a couple of weeks now. We had intended to keep him in with us 'til the six month mark, but we found he was waking at literally the crack of dawn because our room has no curtains or blinds, so we moved his cot bed into the spare room downstairs with a blackout blind and baby monitor, and I tend to sleep in the spare bed after the 3am feed. Until his official move to the spare room, all of his naps and his evening sleep had been in the carry cot but the transition to his cot bed has been surprisingly straightforward, though he still sleeps on his front, rendering the £120 Sleepyhead I bought redundant. Urgh.

Breastfeeding is now a breeze - something I never thought I'd be able to say. It's knackering at night and sometimes I get very disorientated as I doze off whilst sitting upright (I find feeding whilst laying down very uncomfortable and just prolongs the feed). I've not pumped at all lately - not even used my Nature Bond sucker pump - and as a result I only have three pouches of milk left in the freezer. We were finding that Rowan either didn't seem to need milk on the (very rare) occasions that I left him with Ruari, or he just wouldn't take the bottle so it'd go to waste either way.

Joseph has been somewhere between an angel and Joffrey Baratheon for most of the last month, so there has been tension between us at times. I try to keep my cool, but sometimes (most of the time) I lose it. He's had quite a few play dates which I've been pleased about as I was worried about him not having enough friends / ruining his life by pulling him out of his nurseries. We've also been to new places as a trio and our groove has become 'stay indoors in the morning whilst Rowan naps, have lunch then do something fun in the afternoon'... which usually involves stopping for a slice of cake or an ice lolly. There have been signs of jealousy where Joseph will ask me to put Rowan down, ask if it's time for his sleep, and he's even thrown things at him. But there has been more affection than jealousy; if Rowan makes the smallest sound on the monitor during his naps, Joseph wants to go in and see him immediately, he wants to get in his cot with him, wants to sit next to him on the sofa, get down from the table to see him at regular intervals whilst he eats his meals, tells anyone he meets about him. 

My favourite moment of this month was when we went to a show called 'Concerto Para Bebes' at bOing family festival in Canterbury just last weekend. We'd never been to anything like it before and I had no idea what to expect. It was aimed at 0-3 year-olds so I figured it was likely to be perfect for us, and it was. It's the kinda thing Joseph hates - people and noise - but it was done in such a way that he lost himself and was clapping and tapping his feet. When he noticed his foot moving, he said to me 'look mum, my feet are singing!' He held Rowan's hand for a large part of it and snuggled into us and sat his Batman toy down to watch too. I guess the closest thing to it that we have been to is Baby Sensory - the way there were mats laid down in the middle the audience sat around the edges - but it wasn't as interactive; we just watched the performers playing classical music with various instruments - some of whom were sat amongst the audience; the lights were down low and it was just lovely. Joseph said he loved it, and Rowan seemed mesmerised throughout too and fell asleep immediately after it ended.

Speaking of Baby Sensory; I've not taken Rowan to any baby groups. With Joseph I took him to loads, but Rowan loves his morning nap so much that there's no way we could get to one. Plus the funding at the SureStart groups has changed so that they're only on during term-time anyway so there haven't been any recently.

Oh, this month I finally got rid of Rowan's cradle cap; for three nights I smothered his head in Kokoso coconut oil 15 minutes before his bath, then during his bath I left his shampoo on his head for a few minutes before rinsing and rubbing with a soft sponge. Came off super easily, and without the use of any abrasive shampoos. Hurrah. 

Other successes this month include; Rowan can now suck his right thumb, though the way he holds it means that he often pokes himself in the eye and cries whilst doing it. He's rolled over a few times from front to back and once from back to front. This is a slight cheat as I got him weighed the day after his four month birthday but he was 15lb 15oz and still between the 50th and 75th centile line. We got some big laughs from Rowan this month; he particularly enjoys being bounced on a knee whilst said bouncer sings 'pop goes the weasel.' He loves looking at himself in the mirror and loves the fact that Joseph gets right up in his face whilst riding on his Buggy Board. Rowan still seems to be very interested when we eat and has become very dribbly boy. He now wears Joseph's old amber necklace around one of his feet and has been nomming on teething granules and teething bonjela as it seems as though he's being bothered by tooth ache, but who really knows! Jabs were a pain in the arse as they came at a time when Rowan was particularly whingey anyway. Urgh.

All in all, a pretty busy month and by having Joseph at home with me every day it has meant I've not been able to eat as much crap as I normally would and haven't been able to binge-watch anything, meaning that I've lost a few more pounds. I have eight more to lose 'til I'm back to my pre-pregnancy weight.

Until next month x

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Thank you so much for reading and taking the time to leave a comment. It really means a lot! Nicki x