The "4th Trimester" - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 13 Old 01-03-2010, 11:56 AM - Thread Starter
 
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This third baby has been humbling! My first two were fairly easy-going babies. It didn't take long for my husband and I to figure out how to soothe them, what they liked, what they didn't like, etc.

Ian was content to be fed, played with for a while, then put down to entertain himself. I could shower, cook, even eat (sometimes) as long as he could see me or hear me, he was okay with sitting in his bouncy seat or swing or even just on the floor near some toys. He slept...okay, wouldn't cosleep because of bad reflux, so I spent many hours a night in the rocking chair in his room, but it didn't really bother me. He liked to be held, and was very attached to the boob, but it just seemed...easy!

Connor, despite of (or maybe because of) all his health issues, he was a very laid-back baby. We had to make a lot of accomodations (because of severe breathing and swallowing issues, for example, he couldn't ever be laid flat on his back) but once we got it all figured out, he was a breeze!!! Behaviorally, anyway Feeding him was a nightmare, and the stress about his health was horrible, BUT day-to-day care of him was easy. He never cried, as an infant he slept great (the sleep problems came later, then they were horrible!)

Then Gavin comes along. I now understand moms who don't shower for days, moms whose houses are disasters, I understand why pre-cooking so many meals can really come in handy!!! He's been the baby that's hard to put down, doesn't like a swing, bouncy, carseat, bed, NOTHING! Will never go to sleep unless he's being held, won't STAY asleep unless he's held! Lots of crying, and not always obvious why (is it reflux? cutting dairy helped but not fully. is he hot? cold? overstimulated? ARGH!) I don't think it is/was true colic, but DEFINITELY "high needs".

In some ways I say thank goodness he's not my first, because I'm a very calm relaxed mom by now. In other ways, I wish he was my first because I'd have the time to do nothing but hold him. Instead the poor guy has had to cry much more than I would like because I sometimes HAVE to do something with his older brothers (change a diaper, make a meal, get someone on/off the bus, etc) It's definitely been hard to meet his needs, follow his cues; be the kind of mother that I want to be.

All that being said...we've definitely turned a corner. And suddenly. We spent the Christmas/New Years week visiting family in another state. I was dreading the trip because it's hard to be in someone else's house with a fussy baby. But during that week he suddenly started being happy being laid down with something to look at. He happily sat in a swing a few times. He didn't scream the whole drive up or back even!! AND...he started sleeping alone! I can even lay him down "awake but drowsy" and he'll sometimes put himself to sleep!! (I won't ever let him CIO, the few times he's put himself to sleep he either talks to himself for a while then falls asleep, or just lays there quietly and falls asleep!)

Last night I put him in the swing in the living room while I was working on cleaning that room. He started to fuss just a little but as soon as I started vacuuming he stopped (he's always liked the sound of the vacuum, another thing my older two didn't like!) I vacuumed for quite a while (cleaned the floors and the couch) and when I was done, he was asleep! He put himself to sleep in the swing with the sound of the vacuum! (and he didn't cry, I watched him as I was vacuuming since I knew I would be able to hear him) Then I went to bed a little while later and set up the monitor next to his swing. He slept for 3 hours by himself! I fed him then, and laid him in his bassinet next to my bed where he slept for another hour by himself! He spent the rest of the night sleeping with me, but how nice to have those hours to myself!

He is 3 months old today. The end of the "4th Trimester". I've always read about it, but never had a baby who really experiened it, you know?

We're done having children (biologically anyway, we plan to adopt one more) but I wonder what my next child would have taught me? Every baby is different, and can challenge even an "experienced" mom.

Mommy to BigBoy Ian (3-17-05) ; LittleBoy Connor (3-3-07) (DiGeorge/VCFS):; BabyBoy Gavin (10-3-09) x3 AngelBaby (1-7-06)
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#2 of 13 Old 01-03-2010, 01:36 PM
 
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For the first two months mine loved the vacuum. It would stop her screaming and put her to sleep. My friends said I must have the cleanest house ever, because I would run the vacuum 4 times a day.

Now that she is 4 1/2 months, her colic/reflux or whatever it was bothering her has subsided and she still loves talking loudly/giggling when I run the vacuum cleaner.

I am a first time mom, and reading your post helped me. It is good to know I wasn't crazy when i was struggling to get everything done in the house, plus work for my job. No one could understand how difficult a "high needs" (or whatever she is) baby is. I felt like I was seriously lacking the parenting skills I needed on a day to day basis. Having a baby that wont nap or sleep without being held, one that needs to be stimulated all.the.time, is very time consuming. It took me 4 1/2 months to figure it out, and still there are some days, I still struggle.

It's good to know not all babies are like this. I can't wait to have another one, and hopefully the next time around will go a little smoother!

Jenn, single, wahm, to Kayla Rayne born 8-18-09 and Gunnar James who was born sleeping @ 39 weeks 1/12/2011
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#3 of 13 Old 01-03-2010, 01:42 PM
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congrats on turning the corner!!!!!

my babe has just started NOT liking the swing. 5th trimester????

Reluctant 'Sconie, chassid and mama to sweet toughie Ada Bluma 9/9/09 and loving pittie-mix ("Judge the deed, not the breed!")
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#4 of 13 Old 01-03-2010, 03:37 PM
 
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I hear ya! I am glad this LO is my first, b/c the first 8 weeks of his life he couldn't be put down for more than 5 min before screaming! But ever since about 8 weeks old he has mellowed more and more. He still needs lots of attention and still almost never sleeps without us sleeping (or just laying) next to him. . .but at least he is happy most of the time. And I think the sleep stuff is starting to change too. . .I definitely am a believer in the 4th trimester with this one!

I too was worrying about holiday travels and he did great! He seemed to love all the new faces/places. Of course it helped that I have 2 sisters and a mom who never wanted to stop holding/talking to him. So he was super content with all the attention. Made me think that babies really are meant to be raised by more extended families. . .I think Noam would be a much happier baby overall to be part of a bigger family and not just sitting at home with me most of the time (I mean he wants me there too obviously, but he likes being around more people I think).

Maybe next time I'll get one of those mythical easy babies! (Not that I would change this guy for the world of course!!!)

p.s. and yes, he hates (HATES) the car seat, hated the swing until about two weeks ago, not so sure about the stroller, okay with the bouncy chair since about a month ago. . .but basically just wants us to hold and walk him around, which is rough since he is a big guy at 16lb (at 3 months).

photosmile2.gif Me= crunchy mama to one rambunctious toddler, born on October 1, 2009. And one sweet little baby born January 19, 2012. heartbeat.gif

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#5 of 13 Old 01-03-2010, 05:29 PM
 
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My second was like that!! And I used to say, thank goodness he wasn't my first, because I was a really uptight, nervous first time mama and it would have been even worse if I had a fussy, needy baby! I would have driven myself over a cliff with guilt wondering what I was doing wrong when really it was just his personality (he's now a fussy, needy 7yo, lol).

Luckily, DS4 has been a total breeze.... knock on wood before that changes!!

Mom to : DS1 (11), DS2 (8), DD3 (4), : DS4 (1), and : : :
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#6 of 13 Old 01-03-2010, 05:50 PM
 
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Yeah, I totally believe in it, even though I routinely forget until that magical 3rd month ends All of my babies just like the whole world a little better at that age.

We've totally retired the swing - and bouncy seats are almost out the door now too. It's all about the exersaucer and the bumbo chair. That and laying on the floor so she can pracitce rolling over and tummy time. (still L-O-V-E-S the TV though).

We've been having a difficult time with the sleep lately, I sure hope things turn around on that soon. It all started with the holidays, and we seem to be having a hard time getting back into our routine - although she did start taking a STELLAR afternoon nap in the last week - like 3+hours! It's been heaven! The rest of her naps (3 to 4 total a day) are only like 1 or 2 cycles each (40-90 minutes). It's GETTING her down that's hell. She's one that actively fights naps - even if you're holding singing rocking patting the whole deal. She'll SCREAM at you for a few minutes before she gives up. I hate it. Dh and I are actually fighting over who has to do it. Oh well, this too shall pass, a couple more months and she'll happily fall into bed, but we're not there yet!

Julia(34), Mommy to: Maddie(10), Grace(6), Charlotte (3) and our only Little Man (due 2/23). 

It's a crazy life!

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#7 of 13 Old 01-04-2010, 03:13 PM
 
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My first WAS like that, and let me tell you that she was almost an only child. We didn;t even think about having another until she was 2. Now the up side to that was she was an amazingly easy toddler.

Not only did she need to be held ALL of the time, she needed to be walked around while bouncing and you couldn't even walk in the same room for long. I did anything and everything to help her stop crying. It was very hard, but around 3 months, she started being OK with just bouncing in one room and gradually OK with me sitting a few minutes. DH and I took turns eating dinner. I have no idea how I got through lunch and breakfast. I now believe it was due to my oversupply/foremilk-hindmilk inbalance. I read the signs and she fit them perfectly. This LO was having similar issues for a while in the beginning, and I block fed and things improved after just a couple of days of taming my supply. It wasn't even as bad this time around. With my first, my milk would spray more than a foot upon let-down.

We didn't even think about having another baby until she was 2 and then we did it only for her. Of course, it took 3 years to get pregnant with a healthy baby (3 miscarriages) and by the end, I wanted a baby more than words could describe. Now, the good part is that my older dd has been the easiest kid in the world. She's 5 now and she has her moments, but she's really an easy-going and smart little girl. We actually took down the baby gates when she turned 2 because we just didn't need them.

Mom to: Honey (6/04) and Bunny (9/09)
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#8 of 13 Old 01-05-2010, 02:04 PM
 
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My second child was like your Gavin. She is now 7 and very high spirited, stubborn, strongwilled, outgoing, and hyper but well-adjusted. I said the same thing you are saying now, that had she been my first baby that there would have been no more. However, we just had our third so I didn't stick to it. All 3 of my kids have been very different.

I heard somewhere once that the 2nd baby is usually the most challenging for most people. I've also met a lot of moms who say it is true for them.

Proud *single* mom to 3 amazing kiddos
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#9 of 13 Old 01-05-2010, 02:54 PM
 
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So glad that Gavin is making strides. It is amazing to have a little time to yourself. I am just beginning to have this with Piper and I am feeling so blessed that the tides are changing!

There are little things that I miss about her that she has akready grown out of, but her new developements are amazing and I look forward to them every day. Now if we can just get past this sleep regression...must be a growth spurt of some kind. She wants to basically be latched on all night that past 3 nights...I can't wait until this passes.

Mama to 4yo dd Piper, loving wife to Dave and preggo for the second time...due in Early July!  Hurray!
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#10 of 13 Old 01-05-2010, 03:13 PM
 
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DDC crashing...

I think it's hilarious that what you're describing as "hard" is exactly what made me describe my daughter as easy. She barely cried....as long as you were holding her! Maybe as a first time mama, I didn't know/expect it to be any different. It was just "babywearing" to us. We tried putting her down, but it never worked, so we'd just strap her on and go about out business. It will be really interesting to see what #2 is like in comparison. I will admit, it would be luxurious to have a kid willing to sleep on their own.

Co-sleeping, Breastfeeding, EC'ing, Baby-wearing, Homebirthing mama to two fabulous girls 6/2007 and 8/2010
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#11 of 13 Old 01-05-2010, 03:43 PM
 
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I'm checking in just cuz I have a few minutes, but I hear you! My first born was exactly what you described and I had a friend whom thought my baby was high needs because of how I was while pregnant. I was stressed by many things and she said since she was calm, that made the difference between her easy baby and my hard baby.

We actually parted ways for quite awhile because of this difference in attitude. We reconnected when she had her 3rd and 4th - twins who were polar opposites. One easy like her 1st and 2nd, and one as hard if not harder than my 1st. She said she realized it had NOTHING to do with the way they were "baked" - its all the child. She said she had her commuppance! LOL

I'm very lucky that the Duo are not like this - I had my share with our first born and I'm not sure I could function with a subsequent child being like your Gavin is - too much else to do in life whereas my first born I did what BlackSheep did - I just wore her 24/7.

Tamika
Mum to 5 wonderful gifts!!
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#12 of 13 Old 01-05-2010, 07:35 PM
 
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Originally Posted by 2boyzmama View Post
This third baby has been humbling! My first two were fairly easy-going babies. It didn't take long for my husband and I to figure out how to soothe them, what they liked, what they didn't like, etc.

Ian was content to be fed, played with for a while, then put down to entertain himself. I could shower, cook, even eat (sometimes) as long as he could see me or hear me, he was okay with sitting in his bouncy seat or swing or even just on the floor near some toys. He slept...okay, wouldn't cosleep because of bad reflux, so I spent many hours a night in the rocking chair in his room, but it didn't really bother me. He liked to be held, and was very attached to the boob, but it just seemed...easy!

Connor, despite of (or maybe because of) all his health issues, he was a very laid-back baby. We had to make a lot of accomodations (because of severe breathing and swallowing issues, for example, he couldn't ever be laid flat on his back) but once we got it all figured out, he was a breeze!!! Behaviorally, anyway Feeding him was a nightmare, and the stress about his health was horrible, BUT day-to-day care of him was easy. He never cried, as an infant he slept great (the sleep problems came later, then they were horrible!)

Then Gavin comes along. I now understand moms who don't shower for days, moms whose houses are disasters, I understand why pre-cooking so many meals can really come in handy!!! He's been the baby that's hard to put down, doesn't like a swing, bouncy, carseat, bed, NOTHING! Will never go to sleep unless he's being held, won't STAY asleep unless he's held! Lots of crying, and not always obvious why (is it reflux? cutting dairy helped but not fully. is he hot? cold? overstimulated? ARGH!) I don't think it is/was true colic, but DEFINITELY "high needs".

In some ways I say thank goodness he's not my first, because I'm a very calm relaxed mom by now. In other ways, I wish he was my first because I'd have the time to do nothing but hold him. Instead the poor guy has had to cry much more than I would like because I sometimes HAVE to do something with his older brothers (change a diaper, make a meal, get someone on/off the bus, etc) It's definitely been hard to meet his needs, follow his cues; be the kind of mother that I want to be.

All that being said...we've definitely turned a corner. And suddenly. We spent the Christmas/New Years week visiting family in another state. I was dreading the trip because it's hard to be in someone else's house with a fussy baby. But during that week he suddenly started being happy being laid down with something to look at. He happily sat in a swing a few times. He didn't scream the whole drive up or back even!! AND...he started sleeping alone! I can even lay him down "awake but drowsy" and he'll sometimes put himself to sleep!! (I won't ever let him CIO, the few times he's put himself to sleep he either talks to himself for a while then falls asleep, or just lays there quietly and falls asleep!)

Last night I put him in the swing in the living room while I was working on cleaning that room. He started to fuss just a little but as soon as I started vacuuming he stopped (he's always liked the sound of the vacuum, another thing my older two didn't like!) I vacuumed for quite a while (cleaned the floors and the couch) and when I was done, he was asleep! He put himself to sleep in the swing with the sound of the vacuum! (and he didn't cry, I watched him as I was vacuuming since I knew I would be able to hear him) Then I went to bed a little while later and set up the monitor next to his swing. He slept for 3 hours by himself! I fed him then, and laid him in his bassinet next to my bed where he slept for another hour by himself! He spent the rest of the night sleeping with me, but how nice to have those hours to myself!

He is 3 months old today. The end of the "4th Trimester". I've always read about it, but never had a baby who really experiened it, you know?

We're done having children (biologically anyway, we plan to adopt one more) but I wonder what my next child would have taught me? Every baby is different, and can challenge even an "experienced" mom.
ddc crashing. you just described my son to a T. we r almost 3 months.. hoping he improves soon. this is all new to me.. dd was an easy content baby !bds has never fallen asleep on his own. sorry NAK

All natural Mama to Keira 6/1/07, Israel 10/10/ 09, Nairi 04/01/2011, and #4 March 2013

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#13 of 13 Old 01-05-2010, 10:20 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by BlackSheepPDX View Post
DDC crashing...

I think it's hilarious that what you're describing as "hard" is exactly what made me describe my daughter as easy. She barely cried....as long as you were holding her! Maybe as a first time mama, I didn't know/expect it to be any different. It was just "babywearing" to us. We tried putting her down, but it never worked, so we'd just strap her on and go about out business. It will be really interesting to see what #2 is like in comparison. I will admit, it would be luxurious to have a kid willing to sleep on their own.
We do baby wear, but there are things that are just impossible to do with a baby on you. Like change a 2 year old's diaper who is protesting the diaper change (I was afraid Gavin would get kicked!!). Or cooking certain meals, I would do everything I could with him in the sling, then I'd put him down and rush through the rest as quickly as I could. Showering...Ian and Connor were content to sit and listen to the sounds of the shower, Gavin definitely was NOT!!! So although baby wearing is wonderful and extremely helpful, it doesn't cover all 24 hours in the day
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Originally Posted by Kmama2 View Post
ddc crashing. you just described my son to a T. we r almost 3 months.. hoping he improves soon. this is all new to me.. dd was an easy content baby !bds has never fallen asleep on his own. sorry NAK
I haven't jinxed myself yet...Gavin is still being much easier than he was 2 weeks ago. In fact right now he's laying in his bassinet asleep!! I nursed him to sleep, and I was able to lay him down and walk away. SO NICE!! Of course I'm sititng at the computer instead of cleaning something
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Originally Posted by darcytrue View Post
My second child was like your Gavin. She is now 7 and very high spirited, stubborn, strongwilled, outgoing, and hyper but well-adjusted. I said the same thing you are saying now, that had she been my first baby that there would have been no more. However, we just had our third so I didn't stick to it. All 3 of my kids have been very different.

I heard somewhere once that the 2nd baby is usually the most challenging for most people. I've also met a lot of moms who say it is true for them.
You know, interestingly, Ian is my spirited, stubborn, strongwilled, outgoing, almost-hyper child, and he was fairly easy as a young baby!!! Connor was extremely challenging medically, but behaviorally was really easy. Gavin has behaviorally been the hardest infant so far, we'll see what that means as he gets older!

Mommy to BigBoy Ian (3-17-05) ; LittleBoy Connor (3-3-07) (DiGeorge/VCFS):; BabyBoy Gavin (10-3-09) x3 AngelBaby (1-7-06)
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