Wednesday, July 14, 2010

My experience with co-sleeping

Or the cause and cure for my nightmares.

Co-sleeping is not something that interested me. It wouldn't really work with our bed and a co-sleeper would not be able to attach to it either due to the style. DH sleeps like a rock and I legitimately fear him rolling onto the baby. Increased risk of SIDS. And how do you get the kid out of the bed when he gets older? And I knew I was going back to work and needed to get a good night's sleep. Whatever, just not going to do it. Not for us.

Then I had the baby. And the baby would not sleep at first if he wasn't up against me. In the hospital he had to be next to me. At home those first few days, I had to curl around him on the bed to get him to sleep. I didn't get any sleep, but at least my body got a tiny bit of rest.

It was also really interesting... I would try to lay him about a foot away from me in the middle of the bed (DH was in another bed) and jut try to touch my arm against him because I was deathly afraid of rolling over on to him. Michael, all swaddled up, would get on his side and wiggle his way towards me and then latch on to whatever he could. (I tell you, this kid never quit eating.)

It doesn't help that I never really figured out side nursing either. I just don't get it. I can do it, but it isn't comfortable. Not being able to side nurse comfortably just makes me feel defective in a new way.

The co-sleeping only lasted a couple of days. I think I actually got better rest just holding him in the recliner. But every night after (well, every night that I actually got to sleep in a bed), I had a nightmare that the baby was falling off the bed. I totally freaked out every night. I grabbed my husband for dear life thinking he was the baby dozens of times. Eventually, I got so used to the dream I would realize that I was having it and resist grabbing, but I still got woken up by it.

I completely regretted the few nights that we co-slept for the next couple months.

Then a couple of weeks ago, one afternoon on the weekend, me and DH were so tired and Michael was not wanting to nap, so against my better judgement, we all climbed into be together (cats too... not near the baby of course... they were safely cuddling with each other at the end of the bed) and laid down. I side nursed Michael (still uncomfortably). But Michael and my husband (and the cats) had a good nap. I may have nodded off for a couple of seconds.

My nightmares stopped that night. Crazy. It turns out, all I needed was a positive co-sleeping experience to counter the bad.

We are still not co-sleeping. But we did take another nap together last weekend. It is really nice being able to do that and I did enjoy it now that I know it doesn't have to cause more nightmares.


Celia said...

I find that I have to lay on the mattress, on my side with no pillow for the correct angle to side nurse. I never sleep deeply, but hell- it's more sleep than I was getting before.

Celia said...

I like Stanley Bing, but he is somewhat of an a-hole. On the other hand, you could also just call him refreshingly honest and driven. I like What Would Machiavelli Do, Sun Tzu Was A Sissy and Throwing The Elephant. They might tick off your boss. Why not try Freakonomics? The chapters break down for easy discussion.

Bjorna said...

Hi, I just found your blog, when I was looking things up about PCOS and methformin.
I'm now 30weeks pregnant, and im stil taking Methformin, however I just switched to a new OB and she wants me to stop taking it..I dont really want to.
I was wondering, did you take Methformin thoughout your whole pregnany? And do you still take it while breastfeeding?
Hope you can answer my questions!

Amanda said...

Yes, Bjorna, I took met all through my pregnancy and am still taking it while brestfeeding. My high-risk MFM encourages all of his patients to stay on it throughout.

I have a couple of posts that you might want to read:

Good luck!

Lucy said...

I really like side nursing--but it was one of the only ways I got any sleep in the first couple weeks, as our little guy wouldnt let us put him down at all. I do find it's easier on my left side than my right side. For some reason, on my left side, my left arm can crook around him and lay flat, but my right arm, laying on my right side, won't stay flat. Weird.

Glad you had a nap without nightmares!

The Wife said...

I was against co-sleeping before GV was born. Then the day we came home the only way we could get him to sleep was to have him on the bed between us. I've relaxed about it a bit more since then.

Jill said...

I never was able to side nurse, either.

Hannah slept on her tummy on my chest for the first 3 weeks she was home. She wouldn't sleep any other way, and it helped us both to get more/better sleep. She sleeps in her own room now, but if she isn't feeling well, or I just feel like I need to cuddle her, we'll sleep the same way again. I love it.... and I always said that it was something I'd never ever do!