Saturday, January 15, 2011

sleep like a baby

Whoever coined that phrase obviously never had kids.
Because newborns are anything but peaceful when they sleep. They snort, grunt, cry, wiggle, thrash their little bodies around, and whimper. Sometimes it feels like I spent 75% of my day trying to get Juno to sleep, and the remaining 25% trying to keep her asleep.
Wearing her Pavlik harness only complicates the issue, of course!
I am a big swaddler. I swaddle my babies from day one. They lose control of their little arms and legs so easily and swaddling them keeps them happy, even during playtime. So after an entire month of swaddling almost 24/7, figuring out how to swaddle around the Pavlik was a big shock to both me and Juno. Luckily, I figured out a way to work around it well enough that she feels secure enough to sleep peacefully.
1) Unlike a traditional swaddle, fold the blanket into a full triangle shape instead of just folding a corner in.
2) Pull the pointed end of the triangle up between the baby's legs. Pull it up as high as you can so that it will stay secure.
3) Wrap one end over the baby, tucking securely under the baby's opposite side.
4) Wrap the other end over the baby, tucking securely under the baby's other side. Just like a traditional swaddle, this only works if you do it TIGHT TIGHT TIGHT!
Because the harness pulls Juno's legs up in the air when she is flat on her back, we put a small throw pillow under her legs to give them support and keep the circulation from being cut off.
As for pajamas, most footie pajamas are out for now. She has a few pairs that are extra big on her (3-6 months) and sometimes I put them on over the harness and just leave the crotch snaps open. As long as the position of her legs doesn't change, this is just fine. However, it looks really uncomfortable and tight to me, so I normally dress her in an infant gown--the kind that is long and open at the bottom with elastic around the opening. The one I have looks like it belongs in a rest home, so I've been meaning to make one of these out of an old Taking Back Sunday shirt. I just haven't gotten around to it yet. Imagine that, having time to sew again!!


Heidi Hiller said...

Do you really keep her swaddled while she is awake? For playtime?
I would recommend leaving swaddling to sleep times ONLY. This will be her clue that it is indeed time to sleep. Just like when the lights are out it means i sleep. I sure hope she sleeps better for ya!!

Kate said...

I swaddle her as soon as she starts acting agitated, which is usually about 20 minutes after she finishes nursing. It calms her down immediately and helps her settle back down for naps. And she's actually sleeping REALLY well now that I got a box fan to give her some white noise!

blw22 said...

Just wondering if you have any insight for clothing...especially for cold weather and with breastfeeding with the harness. Thanks - New mom of daughter with hip dysplasia