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Old 10-11-2011, 09:29 AM - Thread Starter
 
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i dont know what to do. my 8 month old dd won't nap regularly anymore, wakes up sometimes after just a few minutes of nap... i can't do anything, apartment's a disaster and becoming potential health hazard because i have no time to do anything, and every sound wakes her when she's sleeping. also when awake needs held and interacted with A LOT, so difficult to do stuff then too. sometimes i dont get to shower for days.... :(

i feel like i'm gonna start losing my cool soon...

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Old 10-11-2011, 09:54 AM
 
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A friend of mine once said to me, "you know every mother feels like this sometimes, right?" Being reminded that these feelings are par for the course helps me.

 

- Shower or Bathe with your baby. (I find it essential to my sanity. No shower and I'm not a happy camper. Our routine is once we wake up for the day, we both hop in the shower together, before anything else. At night we also take a shared shower and/or bath.)

 

- Wear your baby to get stuff done. Couldn't live without my Ergo.

 

- Childproof your apartment really well so that LO can explore while you wash dishes.

 

- Get out at least once a day with baby for a good walk. In harsh weather take an umbrella and bundle up. Exercise and fresh air helps immensely.

 

- When you put baby down for a nap lie down with her for at least a few minutes until she is deeply asleep. (Our #! best way to get DS to sleep is to wear him in the Ergo while vacuuming. Once he's really asleep we transfer him to his "bed- which is a stack of blankets in a childproofed bedroom.)

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Old 10-11-2011, 12:03 PM
 
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I feel for you! DD1 was like this for the first year or so of her life and I remember getting so mad/frustrated at her crappy naps because I just wanted to DO something- alone, without the darn baby taking up every ounce of my attention and energy! What helped me the most, honestly, was a shift in my attitude. I remember spending so much time, in vain, to get her to go to sleep for any decent amount of time that I'd get myself all worked up and be super frustrated that things weren't going the way they were "supposed" to. When I decided to plan for her not napping well, then when she did it was like a gift. I forced myself to be more relaxed and if she didn't nap, I'd just give up on the idea and pop her into a carrier and go about whatever I wanted to get done. The previous poster has some good tips. What also helped me was reminding myself that DD1 just wanted to be with me. She loved me and wanted the attention/comfort of her mama and wasn't waking up to annoy me. Also I know doesn't seem like it now, but this will probably be a short blip in your parenting experience. My no-napping DD1 turned into a great napper as a toddler and among all my friends, eventually was the easiest to put to bed at night and was a great sleeper at night too. I didn't experience it with my kids but a lot of people talk about an 8 months sleep regression so maybe that's what's happening to your LO and it will all get better soon.


Casey - Mama to my little lovey girl 6-2-07 and my littler lovey girl 11-16-10!
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Old 10-12-2011, 09:05 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Hello HappyWoman and caseykn,

 

Thanks so much for the support and ideas. It really helps to have someone remind me of this and sympathize. I thought I'd gotten good at letting go of expectations, but... I guess it's a continual challenge.

 

HappyWoman - when you say "shower or bathe with your baby"... how do you shower w/ the baby? It's an idea I've had, but I feel like it could be dangerous trying to hold the baby and shampoo/soap up and get all slippery, so I haven't tried it. I would bathe with her, but that would require washing the tub, hahahaha ;(

 

Also, I've tried wearing her to get stuff done, but I feel like I can't reach anything or I have to do stuff sideways... I guess I should try wearing her on my back.

 

We go for walks every day! :) It really does help both of us.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by HappyWoman View Post

A friend of mine once said to me, "you know every mother feels like this sometimes, right?" Being reminded that these feelings are par for the course helps me.

 

- Shower or Bathe with your baby. (I find it essential to my sanity. No shower and I'm not a happy camper. Our routine is once we wake up for the day, we both hop in the shower together, before anything else. At night we also take a shared shower and/or bath.)

 

- Wear your baby to get stuff done. Couldn't live without my Ergo.

 

- Childproof your apartment really well so that LO can explore while you wash dishes.

 

- Get out at least once a day with baby for a good walk. In harsh weather take an umbrella and bundle up. Exercise and fresh air helps immensely.

 

- When you put baby down for a nap lie down with her for at least a few minutes until she is deeply asleep. (Our #! best way to get DS to sleep is to wear him in the Ergo while vacuuming. Once he's really asleep we transfer him to his "bed- which is a stack of blankets in a childproofed bedroom.)



 

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Old 10-13-2011, 02:24 PM
 
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Here's my technique for a simple shower:

I hold baby securely with one arm/hand, and I use the other hand for everything else. I've found it helpful to use a large pump shampoo bottle (the kind that they sell at Costco or Beauty supply stores, ours is from the health food store - large bottle of Avalon Organics - we fill it up at the Co-op.) With the pump bottle you can squirt shampoo onto your one hand. This isn't necessary though, as I've used a small shampoo bottle too; I just pour the shampoo directly on my head - just estimate how much.

I use bar soap most of the time, but I also have used liquid Dr. Bronner's. I just squirt some on my chest and belly and wash with one hand. I wash both of us with soap. It's very easy to do. I've never felt like it was dangerous, as I'm always holding baby tightly with one arm. Just go slowly the first few times until you get the hang of it. It really isn't a big deal.

 

The only thing I can't do in the shower while holding a baby is shave under my arms. When I want to shave, then I do a luxurious shower/bath/shower combo.

 

Here's my technique for the shower/bath combo:

I shower with baby (see above) to wash my hair and body with soap. After rinsing, then I fill the tub with a few inches of water and sit down with baby. I usually put in a deep conditioner so it can soak in while we play. (I imagine you could also do a face masque or teeth whitening treatment too.) We play with toys (aka measuring cups, random household objects) and splash around. I sing songs and we practice some of our baby sign language. I blow bubbles in the water, which he loves. At some point in the bath, I'll quickly shave under my arms. When the water starts to get cold and it's time to get out, we do one quick shower rinse and then I towel us both off.

 

Some of my best moments with my LO has been playing together in a bath. It's so much fun!! It's relaxing for both of you and a great way to prepare for bed. I've heard from other moms, and it has been my experience, that when a child is cranky (like if they missed a nap and they are WAY over tired, or if they are sick and aren't feeling well), the best thing to do is to put them in the bath. (I would add that the best thing is to put BOTH of you in the bath.)

 

Cleaning the tub can seem intimidating, but you'd be amazed at how quickly you can knock it out - in less than 10 minutes. I've done it several different ways. Here are a few ideas:

1. Put baby on the floor with some interesting household items. (Hair brush, container of lotion, empty bottle, washcloth, etc.) Close the bathroom door. Clean the tub as fast as you can.

2. Put baby on your back and clean the tub.

3. Ask SO to hang with baby while you clean the tub.

4. Ask SO to clean the tub while you hang with baby (wear baby and vacuum for example.)

 

Find a way to wear your baby while you get stuff done. Yes, put her on your back, put on some good music, and take care of business.

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Old 10-13-2011, 06:39 PM
 
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ARen't there also water slings available? I know someone who uses one to shower.


Fiction writer by training, writer/editor of anything anyone will hire me for by trade. Me + D=my girls E (4/2011) and little N, 1/2014.

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Old 10-13-2011, 08:00 PM
 
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Not a cure-all, but it helps both my 2.5 yo and my 5 mo sleep better if there is white noise on. We have one of those heartbeat things that goes off on a timer and comes back on if baby moves it. it's great. I think it's called an audio pacifier or something like that.

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Old 10-13-2011, 09:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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awesome! thanks for the detailed descriptions. i don't mean to sound so helpless... i know i can figure stuff out on my own but sometimes it helps to hear other people's ideas.

:)
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by HappyWoman View Post

Here's my technique for a simple shower:

I hold baby securely with one arm/hand, and I use the other hand for everything else. I've found it helpful to use a large pump shampoo bottle (the kind that they sell at Costco or Beauty supply stores, ours is from the health food store - large bottle of Avalon Organics - we fill it up at the Co-op.) With the pump bottle you can squirt shampoo onto your one hand. This isn't necessary though, as I've used a small shampoo bottle too; I just pour the shampoo directly on my head - just estimate how much.

I use bar soap most of the time, but I also have used liquid Dr. Bronner's. I just squirt some on my chest and belly and wash with one hand. I wash both of us with soap. It's very easy to do. I've never felt like it was dangerous, as I'm always holding baby tightly with one arm. Just go slowly the first few times until you get the hang of it. It really isn't a big deal.

 

The only thing I can't do in the shower while holding a baby is shave under my arms. When I want to shave, then I do a luxurious shower/bath/shower combo.

 

Here's my technique for the shower/bath combo:

I shower with baby (see above) to wash my hair and body with soap. After rinsing, then I fill the tub with a few inches of water and sit down with baby. I usually put in a deep conditioner so it can soak in while we play. (I imagine you could also do a face masque or teeth whitening treatment too.) We play with toys (aka measuring cups, random household objects) and splash around. I sing songs and we practice some of our baby sign language. I blow bubbles in the water, which he loves. At some point in the bath, I'll quickly shave under my arms. When the water starts to get cold and it's time to get out, we do one quick shower rinse and then I towel us both off.

 

Some of my best moments with my LO has been playing together in a bath. It's so much fun!! It's relaxing for both of you and a great way to prepare for bed. I've heard from other moms, and it has been my experience, that when a child is cranky (like if they missed a nap and they are WAY over tired, or if they are sick and aren't feeling well), the best thing to do is to put them in the bath. (I would add that the best thing is to put BOTH of you in the bath.)

 

Cleaning the tub can seem intimidating, but you'd be amazed at how quickly you can knock it out - in less than 10 minutes. I've done it several different ways. Here are a few ideas:

1. Put baby on the floor with some interesting household items. (Hair brush, container of lotion, empty bottle, washcloth, etc.) Close the bathroom door. Clean the tub as fast as you can.

2. Put baby on your back and clean the tub.

3. Ask SO to hang with baby while you clean the tub.

4. Ask SO to clean the tub while you hang with baby (wear baby and vacuum for example.)

 

Find a way to wear your baby while you get stuff done. Yes, put her on your back, put on some good music, and take care of business.



 

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Old 10-14-2011, 10:38 AM
 
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My 6-month-old is also not a great napper. He falls asleep easily, but wakes up after 5 minutes. I discovered that if I then turn on the vacuum cleaner for a few minutes, he usually falls back to sleep. Sometimes I run the vacuum for 20 minutes before he is really out. Then he'll sleep for about an hour. Not energy-efficient, but it works! 

 

Another trick: when he starts waking up too early, I jump in bed with him and nurse him back down. 

 

Good luck!

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Old 10-14-2011, 12:55 PM
 
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Yes yes yes to the vacuum cleaner! It still is uncannily effective for my six month old. If I've tried other things and she's still fussing, I run it (sometimes for up to 10 minutes) and almost all the time it puts her to sleep. It is LOUD, which I think is essential to its effectiveness. It blocks out all other stimuli. It's weird--I turn it on and she instantly relaxes and closes her eyes. Someone else on this board said she made an MP3 recording of the vacuum. You can also purchase one online. I downloaded Audacity (free audio recording program) and am going to record my vacuum cleaner and burn it onto a CD so I can gradually reduce the volume, as sometimes the abruptness of it turning off wakes DD up again.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by foreignerforlife View Post

My 6-month-old is also not a great napper. He falls asleep easily, but wakes up after 5 minutes. I discovered that if I then turn on the vacuum cleaner for a few minutes, he usually falls back to sleep. Sometimes I run the vacuum for 20 minutes before he is really out. Then he'll sleep for about an hour. Not energy-efficient, but it works! 

 

Another trick: when he starts waking up too early, I jump in bed with him and nurse him back down. 

 

Good luck!



 


Fiction writer by training, writer/editor of anything anyone will hire me for by trade. Me + D=my girls E (4/2011) and little N, 1/2014.

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Old 10-14-2011, 01:10 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blanca78 View Post

ARen't there also water slings available? I know someone who uses one to shower.



Yes, I have a TaylorMade mesh water sling that I used to shower with DS1. I used it for awhile, then I ended up being able to put him on the floor by my feet during the shower and he would kinda play (like with the shampoo bottle and such). Then I was able to put him in the bathroom (pretty well child proofed bathroom) and have him play in there while I showered. I usually had to sing until he got used to the idea of me being in the shower without him.

 

 

 

 

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Old 10-14-2011, 08:35 PM
 
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I know this might not be the answer you are looking for but this is what worked for me:

 

I go to bed as early as I can, and get up as early as I can, trying to aim for 1-2 hours before him.  I know that I will lose sleep, and very rarely get a full nights sleep so I wake up - pop a B12 and a cup of coffee and get everything that I can possibly get done, done.  Take my shower, do my homework, walk the dogs, sweep, tidy up - anything that is semi quiet.  

 

By the time he wakes up, the coffee has kicked in, the place is a little less messy and I'm feeling less stressed.

 

Surprise, surprise... he started sleeping better when I relaxed a bit.

 

Other tips:

 

Try entertaining him while doing chores.  I put my little one in his highchair, and face him towards wherever I'm doing something - pretty closely too, usually within 4-5 feet.    Then, I sing, dance and make noises at him while I'm doing whatever.  My husband does this too and the other day the little one grabbed the broom while he was in his walker and started dragging the broom around!    So it shows you that they really are paying attention, and want to learn.

 

Mine is also 8 months old and is very clingy with me.    

 

Other things I do: 

 

Fold laundry on his bedroom floor with him.  We play peek-a-boo while I do it.   Whenever he is distracted, I take a pile to it's appropriate home.

 

Let him help dust, have him hold the duster and swing him around with it.

 

 

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Old 10-14-2011, 09:35 PM - Thread Starter
 
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thanks for all the advice and suggestions - a lot of things i've tried, and they don't seem to work that well for us. but there's always "try, try again"! and some of the suggestions are new so i'll try them too. anyway, hopefully this whole thread will help other mamas (and daddies and others) too!

 

i can't figure out her noise sensitivity pattern. boyfriend and i were once building a shelf, i mean full-on hammering nails and stuff, while she was sleeping and thinking for sure she's going to wake up crying - she slept the whole way through! but, flush the toilet, or rustle a plastic bag, and bam! she's awake. there's no way a vacuum would work for her, hahaha.

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Old 10-14-2011, 10:27 PM
 
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Is she able to crawl around alot on her own yet? My son (now 10 mos) was like that until he got moving, and now he likes to play and explore on his own alot (with everything baby proofed of course). He will even sit in the bottom of the tub while I shower (with the nozzle pointed as far forward as it goes, if she's not sitting on her own, you can use a Bumbo of you have one), or play on the bathroom floor.

For this purpose I bought a long suction-cup non-slip tub mat and a large rubber bottomed soft bath mat for the outside, a clear shower curtain so I can see him, and a toilet lock. Now that he can pull himself up to stand, he likes to stand on the outside of the tub and watch me shower, he pulls the curtain open and shut and reaches in to get a little wet, and laugh at me with shampoo in my hair making silly faces. That way I can get clean first, while still interacting, and then bring him in after. I just wash him up while he sits and pick him up to rinse, put the plug in and make a little bath, or hold him on one hip and just wash his bum/ genitals last so he doesn't slip off.

I used to hang the jolly jumper on the bathroom door frame or out him in the Bumbo on the bathroom floor but he doesn't like to be strapped in anymore.

Also, sometimes a long deep bath is nice so we can soak, and he can kick and slash and "swim" a little, sometimes I sit and feed him in there and listen to the radio, he even falls asleep. It also helps to a big terrycloth robe you can just wrap around both of you, instead of trying to towel off together.

 

As for sleeping, mine's the same way, I use a large fan for white noise, and works pretty well. But he still wakes almost hourly at night, and usually only sleeps 30-45 minutes at a time during the day. I used to put him in the swing to keep asleep for naps, and could sometimes get 2-3 hours, but he's grown out of that.

 

For cleaning, I'm a slob and so is my husband, but in order to have the place safe a baby we had to do something. Using bins prevents having to organize too much. One bin for dirty clothes, one for clothes that are still clean enough to wear again. Bins for socks and underwear. A small laundry basket in the living room for the baby toys, all the baby clothes in cube bins on cube shelves so they don't need to be folded. One bin in the coat closet for all the purses, gloves, scarves etc, another for all baby outdoor clothes, and hooks for all the big stuff. Small bins on the bathroom counter or shelf for the things each person uses daily (eg mine has my deoderant, hair brush, multivitamins, facewash, makeup bag). Then all these things don't have to folded, hung up, or put in a certain spot in a drawer. Unfortunately there's no bin that will magically take care of dirty dishes...

 

I definitely know how you feel, I spent the winter trapped in the country while my husband worked out of town. Moving with a baby has been hectic, but now we live in town and getting out makes all the difference. See if you can find a playgroup of some kind, maybe storytime at the library, that gives you adult interaction to look forward to each week, and get out of the mess. I even joined a book club with a bunch of old ladies that didnt mind me bringing the baby along... but then i couldn't find time to read the books.... 

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Old 10-22-2011, 06:33 AM
 
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I love all your ideas! I'm going to try bathing with baby. It's amazing how creative you can get to get stuff done with baby. ;)

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