The Jasper Chronicles

The Journal of a Cynical Dad

Friday, January 13, 2006

Five Month Review

I'm a walking zombie. Before The Boy was born, people kept telling me, "If you make through the first six weeks, you're home free." Here I am, five months in, and I'm far more tired now than I ever was during those first six weeks.

Those were heady times back then. The sun was high, days were long and we were flushed with the excitement of being new parents. The Boy, like most newborns, was waking up every 2-3 hours for feedings. 1:00am, 2:00am, 3:00am, it didn't matter. He'd wake up, I'd go get him, check his diaper and bring him to bed, where P would feed him while she slept. The whole process - for me at least - took all of four minutes.

At 11 weeks he began sleeping through the night. Then at 16 weeks he began waking up again; only once a night but still we were perplexed. We know he can sleep though the night. He seems to have gotten the "middle-of-the-night-feeding" monkey off his back (a difficult monkey to remove, other parents have attested to). So do we a) reattach the monkey and start feeding him again or b) let him cry himself back to sleep? Late December we settled in on a hybrid of the two.

We don't jump up to get him right away, but we don't let him cry for more than 30 minutes or so. More often than not he'll fall back to sleep within 10 minutes, but if he's still crying after 30 minutes, or he's just going ballistic, I'll get up and feed him a couple of ounces from a bottle; enough to take the edge off and get him calmed down. This method seems to be working, he's slept through the night every day this week. The downside though; I'm up way longer now - either listening to see if he's falling asleep again or feeding him - than I ever was during his early days. I am tired!

While I'm dead on my feet, the last month has been watershed month for The Boy. He went though a major growth spurt, gaining a pound and a half in just three weeks (which might explain the night feedings), and has gotten significantly longer. Something I noticed after being repeatedly being kicked in the nuts by him on the change table, "Umph... ohh... och... Hey Honey! I think he's grown!"

The Boy has developed cognitively too, really concentrating, trying to figure things out and make things happen. He's also begun to roll over both ways and has started vocalizing, there's just so many things he wants to say. He actually sounds much like I do when I'm drunk, "aab, aab, aab, aab, aaaaaaab." Now that I think about it, I have hazy recollections of rolling on the floor both ways too when I'm in that state. And spitting up. Wow, the fruit really does fall close to the tree.