Wednesday, February 13, 2013


Thank you so much for the responses to this post and to Mel at Stirrup Queens for choosing it for the Roundup. I feel really supported by the comments and I'm glad it resonated with so many of you. I actually didn't receive one flame comment, and for that I am truly grateful.

Only a few days after I wrote the last post, my chin went back under water. I must have jinxed myself, because just when I thought I was feeling secure, I lost it. There were entire days I spent crying. There were moments when I literally felt numb as I walked through my day. There was a week-long visit with my sister (and a blizzard!) that I was only half present for. There was a dinner with girlfriends that I held back tears through. It was during that time that I realized that PPD is going to be with me for a bit. It may not be there every day, but it's standing right behind me for now.

It seems that my mood is completely linked to how LF's day goes. He recently got diagnosed with reflux and now that we are treating it, it seems as though a lot of his crying, irritability, and fussiness was linked to it. Poor kid, no wonder he was so difficult to soothe. But, in the days (weeks) leading up to his diagnosis and for several days after we started medication, he was inconsolable. He cried on and off all day and night. He slept fitfully in short spurts. He was just in constant need, and I felt like I was failing him because I didn't know what was wrong or how to help. I was a mess. He was a mess. As you can imagine, this made life incredibly stressful in the Fabulousness household, and poor KG was left to pick up the pieces.

Since getting treated, he has been much more comfortable and therefore much easier to soothe. KG and I are also figuring out more about him as a person - his cues for fatigue and hunger, his need for swaddling when he's overstimulated, and the difference between his cries. I've even managed to get him to take more naps (although he only sleeps for 30-45 mins at a time). Now if we could get him to do longer stretches overnight, THAT would be something (Advice about 7 week olds here please?). He also found the beginnings of his smile (a bit late) and is starting to focus on our faces more. Finally, I am starting to see my little man's (complicated, cute, fussy, funny) personality, and therefore I feel a little more secure and grounded. More frequent visits with my therapist and a tweak to my medication have also helped push me in the right direction. Not to say that there aren't bad days, but, on his good days, I feel optimistic.

Stay tuned.


  1. We had the exact same experience until our LO was diagnosed with reflux at 7 weeks. He literally did not sleep more than three hours in one day for a whole week. It was complete hell.

    Once we started meds and a new routine, things improved drastically. We realized we had been doing a lot of things wrong - just first-time parent mistakes. We started giving him a bottle every evening instead of nursing, to ensure he was getting enough before bedtime. We started a bedtime routine even though he was so little - bath, bottle, book, bed. It took him awhile to get used to it, but he has slept through the night for the most part (barring any growth spurts, illness, etc.) since 8-9 weeks.

    Also, once I went back to work, things improved even more. Having him at daycare provided him a much better routine than I seemed to be able to provide him with at home. They were more successful at getting him down for naps, and he was more stimulated there than he was at our quiet home. We start his evening routine at 6 p.m. and he is out by 7-7:30 p.m.

    Other than the meds, the thing my husband and I think really helped was getting him a rock and play sleeper. We would do bath, bottle and book, then we swaddle him and lay him in his rocker. One of us would then sit in his room with him, lights off, white noise machines on and rock him until he falls asleep. Then we would move him to the crib. This took 1-2 weeks to get him used to before it started working. He would fuss or just stay awake for up to 1-2 hours in the beginning. Then he got used to it as his routine, and he easily goes down now with anywhere from 1-20 minutes of rocking.

    They tell you to put them down drowsy, yet awake. We found that doing it like this is what worked to get him to sleep longer stretches with his reflux, in his own room at first. Once this was down solidly, we started working on the drowsy/awake thing. He is only 4 months - some nights it works, most nights it doesn't and we have to go back in and rock him until he is out cold. But it has worked to help go and stay to sleep. When he does wake up he is pretty easy to get back down. We resort to the swing on the rare occasions he isn't. We also elevated him in his crib, although he can sleep flat now and has grown out of that.

    I am sharing all of this because I was at my wit's end at the same point. It was awful - but we found something that worked for us, and I wanted to share what it was in case it helps you!

  2. My happy days definitely correlate to Evers sleep patterns and how fussy she is throughout the day. I feel on top of the world when she naps twice during the day, doesn't fuss much, ears well and only wake up twice at night, but omigosh, the fussy days, I feel so bad. It's no wonder having a baby that has some reflux would make you feel so helpless!

    I'm glad you're seeing your therapist more and finding just the right med dosages.

    Hang in there! He will reward you with his smiles and personality and soon this will all be a distant memory. :)

    I feel sorry for all you guys in the rainy and snowy states!! I get SAD syndrome a wouldn't be able to handle it! I think you guys will turn a huge corner come spring.

  3. Oh hon, I am glad he is starting to smile. That is such a huge milestone and something that can make your day. I spend hours a day grinning at Cooper just to get a few lip quirks and baby smiles out of him. Some days I get nothing and others I get a ton. It makes a big difference doesn't it.
    A couple things we are doing: you know the feed, wake, sleep cycle training - we are also creating a bedtime routine, swaddling when he needs it and for sleeping, I will sit with him and a Paci when he is crying a ton, we keep a humidifier in his room, we do baby massage and stroke his head, sing to him all the time, and just try to generally be calm and positive around him (well I do). It's hard but you will find the things that work best for M.
    We still have hard times, but the more I try to stay relaxed and focused on those things I know help him, the more I am able to endure. Babies are so hard - but M will grow out of this reflux and you will be blown away by his personality.
    I'm glad you are both getting the medical care you need. Please call me any time.

  4. As a reference for all things kids I've found to be immensely helpful. Not only is she kind and well-balanced when it comes to advice regarding the many things kids go through from infancy to beyond (her kids are middle school now), the many many people who comment on her site have been able to follow the same protocol. The site is also very searchable for those 3am panics when it feels like you are the only mother ever to go through something.

    Hang in there.

  5. It's so hard not to have your mood be tied to lo's! Reflux sucks so much because you see your lo in pain and can't do much to help. I'm glad both of you are getting better.

  6. I haven't blogged about it yet, but I found the whole newborn phase incredibly hard and I felt totally unprepared for it. I have definitely sobbed in the shower on more than one occasion. We thought that the twins had reflux but since they were gaining weight our pediatrician didn't want to treat them so they were just labeled colicky. The good news is that it does get better and easier especially when they start smiling. Hang in there. It sounds like you are doing a great job. Basically it's just survival mode, one day at a time.

  7. Thank you for continuing to blog about your experience. I'm sorry PPD has been haunting you but it sounds like you're on the right track toward a better place. And those wonderful moments you described? Sound SO wonderful. :)


Shout it, shout it, shout it out loud!