Stealth Shuffling & Sleep Regression at 8mths

We have been having a bit of an interesting time with our Little Miss of late. In many ways she has settled down, her teething and reflux aren’t bothering her quite so much and on the whole she is a very happy, sunny, smily baby and she can be a joy to be around. But she has reached a point where she very much wants to be on the move and that is making things interesting.

For quite a while now she has been really content to sit and play with toys. Honestly it has been amazing as Monkey never really did this. She focuses so intently on toys and can sit for ages and entertain herself while I play or craft something with Monkey or potter about with some jobs.

Now though, she so wants to explore wider surroundings. She is desperate to crawl and making slow progress towards being able to, with lots of rolling onto her tummy and pushing up. She also has quite an amazing skill, the stealth shuffle.

I mentioned a while ago that she liked to bum shuffle in the bath and she now does that in front of her eyes. But the interesting thing is that it is very difficult to detect her movement. She leans forward and sits back up and twists and turns around but seems to be in the same spot… but then all of a sudden she is on the over side of the room and we weren’t really aware of the move happening!

stealth shuffling

Nanny & Pops looked after her today and even they remarked on it. Our little stealth shuffler!

It won’t be long until she crawls either so we need to be even more vigilant about what is on the floor or within reach of little arms. A whole new world :)

Blurry shot... but you get the idea!

Blurry shot… but you get the idea!

She is also moving around in bed a lot too and as a result we are struggling a little at nap times and bedtime which, to be honest, is driving us potty. We sleep trained quite young and she has been a fantastic sleeper, as long as she is tired and nothing else is bothering her. But lately even when she is tired and we can find nothing else to be the matter she is miserable about going to sleep and gets very very unhappy.

She also moves herself all over the cot and we come to check on her and find her rolled over, turned sideways, back to front, legs stuck through bars and all over the place. I won’t go into details but it has been stressful and there has been lots of rocking to sleep at a loss of what else to do sometimes.

I’ve read that 8 month sleep regression is common, though again it wasn’t something we experienced with Monkey,and are hoping it is just a phase! Anyone else been through this?

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Once she is asleep she still sleeps well and wakes up very happy… we are just at a bit of a loss as to how we can help her remember how to fall asleep in her bed again!

Ethans EscapadesBest of Worstbrummymummyof2

How Ferber’s “Progressive Wait” approach helped our children sleep better

Before Monkey was born, whenever any friends were having troubles getting their little ones to sleep and they mentioned leaving them to cry themselves to sleep, I thought it seemed like a pretty sensible idea. Then when Monkey was born, I realised it wasn’t that simple, and the thought of doing it felt really really cruel. With him spending hours each day screaming in pain with his colic, neither hubs or I could bear the thought of leaving him to cry himself to sleep.

Monkey fast asleep - on his daddy not in bed!

Monkey fast asleep – on his daddy not in bed!

So we did what many parents do and helped him to sleep. We rocked and shushed and patted, drove him round in the car, took him out in the buggy and let him suck our fingers. We tried to use a dummy though could never get him to take one! We did anything that worked and our lives and sleep revolved around getting him to sleep and keeping him that way. Honestly? It was exhausting, and miserable. I spent a lot of time crying and feared for my mental health. So after a few months of this we started looking for other ways. We tried “The Baby Whisperer” but didn’t manage with her techniques at all. If anything her pick up/put down technique just seemed to mean that Monkey screamed louder and for longer. Every child is different but at the time we blamed ourselves.

I remember people saying to me “maybe he just isn’t tired” or “maybe he doesn’t need the sleep” if I complained I couldn’t get him to sleep. But to me the answer to that was then why is he miserable? He was clearly tired. I had no problem with a child who was awake and happy to be, my frustration came from comforting a child who was miserable and clearly tired, but who refused to stay asleep!

Although we had initially discounted the possibility of “cry it out” techniques, we eventually got desperate and came across Dr Ferber’s progressive wait method. It seemed a little kinder than what I had thought of as “cry it out”so we decided to look into it more. I wanted to make sure we did it properly, if we were going to do it at all, so I bought his book “Solve your Child’s Sleep Problems“* from amazon and had a read. This book covers children of all ages with problems sleeping, with advice on anything from night terrors to sleep walking. The section we were interested in though is about younger children and helping them sleep better without being rocked, etc. There is far more information than I could hope to convey so if you are having problems, I strongly recommend that you have a read.
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31 weeks and lacking sleep!

Don't I look happy? ;)

Don’t I look happy? ;)

I am 31 weeks pregnant and I’m afraid to say I am not enjoying pregnancy at the moment. Apologies for a slightly moany post, I know how lucky I am to be pregnant and this pregnancy has definitely been easier than my first, but right now, I am not enjoying it.

My pelvis and back have been really painful since the wedding a week and a half ago. Up until then I have been managing the SPD quite well with a combination of weekly aquanatal yoga and fortnightly physio. It has troubled me at times but I have been managing  it, which is about the best you can hope for with SPD. Lately though I have not been managing it so well. I am in pain a lot of time and night-times are by far the worst. Sitting in the car for 6 hours over 2 days to get to the wedding and back definitely did not do me any favours!

Come 9pm every day I am pretty exhausted and head upstairs and do my leg and back stretches before bed. What is unfortunately a nightly occurance at the moment though is that as soon as I am drifting off to sleep my legs start twitching (which I know is due to compression of nerves around my pelvis and spine). Then our little wriggly baba decides to have a party in my uterus and starts kicking and pumelling my pelvis and bladder. She is still very much breech and though I can feel she is trying to turn, I am about 85% certain there isn’t enough room in my Bicornuate Uterus for her to make it all the way round, and therefore we are heading for another C-Section. Hey ho, I am not worrying or getting down about it and we will find out for certain when we see the consultant at 35 wks.

Because of the gymnastics going on in my tummy I usually have to haul myself out of bed and off to the loo at least 3 times before I have even got to sleep. Which just hurts. As with everything in life with SPD you need to keep your legs together at all times. The best way to get in and out of bed with SPD is to sit on the side of the bed with your legs together, and sort of lift your legs (keeping them together)  as you lie down on your side and roll into bed and then position yourself with pillows between your legs etc. (I have a dream-genii pregnancy pillow). Trying to get out of bed the normal way, one leg at a time, is just agony.

I lie back down and then the leg twitching and baby kicking generally resumes. I have thought about getting up and doing something but mentally I am shattered and desperate for sleep. Hubby gave me a massage the other night, bless him, and though this sounds lovely it was actually just agony, the slightest touch of my muscles at the moment is really painful :( . Using tiger balm does help sometimes as it numbs my back enough to stop the leg twitching long enough for me to doze off. It’s difficult to know how safe this is during pregnancy though and there’s so much contrasting info online… I hope it’s ok but I have no idea so do try and manage without it as much as I can. Not sure if I am making it harder for myself though? Maybe I should just slap it on?

This process sometimes lasts a couple of hours before I manage to drift off, and I am often keeping hubby awake too with all my tossing and turning, trying to get comfy, and all the palava of getting in and out of bed to go to the loo.

So I am generally a bit tired, sore and mardy at the mo, and spending a lot of time sitting and lying on heat packs. I have physio this afternoon which on the best of days is a seriously painful 30 mins of her digging her elbows into my back and bum muscles to stop the spasms. I am not exactly looking forward to the pain today but it is a case of no pain no gain and I am just really hoping that it helps take the daily discomfort down a notch or two!

I am struggling with clothes at the moment too as my summer maternity clothes are getting small and uncomfortable. There was a lovely week or so when the weather was cooler and I could wear some of the bigger maternity clothes, but now the sun has come back out again! I am probably about the only person in the country longing for cooler weather, but I am not buying bigger summer wear at this point, and am sweltering in my warmer clothes!

Apologies again for all the moaning, I just needed a bit of a vent. Looking on all the bright sides, hopefully physio this afternoon, and my aquanatal yoga tonight will mean I get a better night’s sleep tonight and feel a bit more cheerful tomorrow. Monkey is being a darling and coping so well with my slow and limited movements, he is just growing up so fast at the moment! Plus if I am right and she is breech, although I won’t get the VBaC I was hoping for, at least we will get a date for the C-Section, and can start counting down the days. It could mean she is here in about 7-8 weeks time. That is exciting and what I am holding on to. I know all of this is worth it to have her here and healthy.

I caught a headline recently about a celeb’s wife who had a stillbirth at 32 weeks’ pregnant and that must just be so devastating. I was then chatting to my lovely midwife yesterday who told me about her stillbirth at 26 weeks (in March this year, bless her, how she copes as a midwife, seeing all us preggos is incredible) and it just doesn’t bear thinking about. Through all my discomfort and moaning I have to remember how lucky I am, and hope beyond hope that nothing goes wrong for the baby as that is the most important thing. In the grand scheme of things it doesn’t matter how uncomfortable I am, as long as she gets here safely and healthily. I do feel guilty that Monkey doesn’t have a very active energetic mummy at the moment but it’s only for a short time in the grand scheme of things!

Mother's Always Right

Determined to feel Positive

I made a conscious decision that my word for this week was going to be positive. Normally, I see how the week goes and think about the best word to fit. This week however I decided in advance that my word this week was going to be “Positive”.

Positive

Because, at the end of last week I was feeling decidedly negative. I made the decision to apply to be a Butlins Ambassador, and while I would absolutely love the opportunity, part of me actually feels like I wish I hadn’t gone for it. Why? because they wanted to know all of my blogger stats. Page views, followers etc. In general I try not to think too much about these kinds of things, mainly because whenever you start comparing yourself to others it is easy to fall into the trap of thinking you aren’t doing as well as them. But to apply I had to provide them with this information and I felt like I was doing well enough or something.

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12 Things all Pregnant Women should know

There’s no denying pregnancy is pretty magical, it’s really quite incredible when you think about the fact that you are growing a tiny human being inside your body. Nature is pretty marvellous. But, well, despite what the media likes to portray of pregnancy, being pregnant doesn’t always feel that magical. Most media images of pregnant women show glowing skin, radiant complexions and a lot of the less fun aspects of pregnancy are very much glossed over.

12 Things all Pregnant Women should know

This post will highlight some of those less enjoyable aspects – not because I want to scare anyone or put you off being pregnant. It is magical feeling those kicks and the symptoms really are different for everyone. But I just want to get this post out there for any mummies to be who are feeling less than yummy. Know that you are not alone, and what you are going through is perfectly normal.

Because, for some of us, pregnancy isn’t exactly a bed of roses.

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