Tuesday, January 23, 2007

food, glorious, food!

Okay, here comes the classic new mom question: "How much should my baby be eating?"

I find myself worrying about this lately, especially as Kayla hasn't recovered her birth weight yet. I didn't know, but babies actually lose weight their first few days outside the womb. Typically by about 2 weeks, babies should have regained their birth weight. Although it's still early, Kayla is a few ounces short.

My second cause for concern is the number of times she gets up in the middle of the night. I know some may say it's too early to worry feed/sleep patterns, but I sense that Kayla may have her days and nights mixed up (apparently a common new baby phenomenon as this also happened to a friend of mine who recently had a baby in November).

So, in search of a fix for my problems, I remembered the book The Baby Whisperer which I received as a gift over the holidays. I flipped through the feeding section this morning and came across an ingenious theory, called "tanking up".

Basically the strategy is to "tank up" baby in the early evening - say at 6 and 8 pm and then feed her again before 11 pm while she's actually asleep. Tracy Hogg, the book author called this "dream feeding" and should result in baby sleeping longer through the night (4-5 hour goal) and the desired 2-3 hour feed sessions during the day.

This sounds like an awesome idea to me because I'm not sure I can last long on the current 2 hour at night feeding sessions! I'll let you all know how the plan works in 3 or 4 days (either Kayla will be a well-adjusted, happy kid, or I'll be a spaced-out mom)! Let's see who wins.


Vivian said...

Good luck Flora!! I definitely think the "tanking up" theory works! It did with Brandon at least...I eventually started feeding Brandon with a bottle as his last meal before bedtime as I felt he would drink more from it. My theory was each ounce equalled an hour of sleep! (Dennis used to say I fed him like a peking duck because I was so determined for him to drink as much as possible!)

chatterbox said...

Hey doll - I only dispense advice when asked, and you've asked...expect Kayla to figure out day and night on her own, at about 8-12 weeks - crazy I know, but I've been there twice and eventually you will sleep. When nursing, let Kayla so for at least 20-30 minutes on side one, dinner, then 5-10 on the other side, dessert. This will fill her the best way possible - staying on ide one is super important because the longer she is there, the thincker/fattier the milk gets, which will sustain her longer. If she still gets up a lot at night, try this trick that Nunzio and I did - go to bed as soon after the 6 o'clock feeding (depending on when daddy gets home), sleep til she wakes for her 8-9 o'clcok, then go back to sleep, asking your hubby to wake you between 11-12 to nurse again. All this time Kayla should remain out of your room, with Dad. They get to bond, and you get some quiet mom time, even if you don't sleep, you can chill. Nunzio used to keep the babies til 1 am downstairs - then my night shift would begin. I found that doing it this way for the first 12 weeks made for a better rested mom! You won't spend a lot of time with Hubby, but a happy mommy makes a healthier mommy and that's what everyone in your home needs! Call me if you want to chat...(905 201 6390 or 416 934 7068)

Anonymous said...

One of the tricks I did is to make sure not to turn on the lights when feeding during the wee hours of the morning, even when you need change thier diapers. It confuses the baby that light is daytime.

Karen said...

"Tanking up" or "Cluster feeding" does have some merit. Although, Hayden fed every 2 hours (day and night) for the first 8 weeks, I still believe in it. In fact, Hayden is now 5 months old and I still try to tank up -- he eats 3 times between the hours of 3pm and 7:30 pm when he goes to bed. Lucky for me, he sleeps for 12 hours straight using this method. And I do agree with "anonymous" -- don't turn on the lights when night feeding/changing. A little nightlight should be enough for you to see her - this way, she'll associate the darkness with nighttime and when it's morning, I always open up the blinds and turn on the lights so Hayden knows it's daytime. Good luck and most of all, be patient. The time will eventually come when you will get your sleep :)