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For those of you that already have one!(13 Posts)
My DH and I have planned to TTC in the new year. I'm a planner (and an over thinker), so this will probably sound a bit ridiculous. We currently have a dog who woke us up barking at 3am last night because he wanted to go out. I forced myself up (and could barely see!!) and out we went. All I could think of was waking up at that time was awful and what on earth am I thinking having a baby who will wake me up several more times a night?!! It all seemed a bit much! . Can someone reassure me that, although it's hard, a strong maternal instinct kicks in / it isn't so bad when it's your own baby? Or are the sleepless early days really that bad...? Trying to make sure I'm as prepared as I can be. Thank you!
It is a biological thing. Babies are way easier than dogs!
I don't think this is what you want to hear but for me the sleep deprivation has been the worst part of parenting so far. However, my DD doesn't sleep through the night even now (13 months) but many people I know had babies who were sleeping through from only a couple of months old. It's the luck of the draw to be honest whether you get a good sleeper or not. The good thing is that when you only have one you can at least nap in the day when they nap, which does make things more bearable.
Have to agree with kitkat, sleep deprivation is a killer! But you do get through it somehow. I had similar concerns before having DD1 (I love my sleep and get very grumpy when I'm tired) but I survived. Don't know how, but I did... still not looking forward to doing it all again in a month's time though!
You might be lucky. DD slept through from 10 weeks
although she has just recently started with 5am wake up calls to make up for it. It's easier with a baby because you don't necessarily have to get up and go downstairs and if co-sleeping you wouldn't even have to get out of bed.
Thanks all - bracing myself as someone who needs their sleep!
Oh no.. it's nowhere near as bad! I love my sleep, am ttc number 3,and I love dogs but don't have one because I think they are far too much like hard work. I looked after a friends last year and I clearly remember thinking that getting up in the early hours to let it out in the garden was worse than waking up a few times to feed a baby.
The first few days after having a baby you choose staring at them over sleeping. The first few weeks after, you are genuinely so besotted that you are happy to be woken up by them because you get to pick them up and look at them some more. Then the sleep deprivation does take over and you wish for more sleep but it is still nothing like getting out of bed. You are tired but not resentful. The best thing you can do is breastfeed and co sleep. Research safe cosleeping guidelines, it is biologically normal. Then all you have to do is move baby a few inches to you when they stir, latch them on and they are soon asleep again. I don't have experience of going downstairs to make bottles personally, but if that had to happen I guess you can then always enlist outside help (dad).
Luckily I've been blessed with two children who like to sleep in. Even if it does take them until 2 years to sleep through the night. I'd take that over 5 am risers every time.
Having a legitimate excuse to take day time naps is pretty good too. I fully admit to fibbing at least once to my OH that baby had an awful night, 'up every hour...' so I could go back to bed.
Sleep deprivation is awful. My dd didn't sleep through until she was 2.5!! However, you get through it. You just do and no one really knows how. You will get through it easier if you make sure you allow others to help. In the early months, especially if you are breastfeeding, it can be all on you. A co - sleeper cot will help here. It attaches to your bed so baby has its own sleeping area, but you don't actually have to get up to feed, you just slide them across. If you are bottle feeding, you can buy a milk dispenser that produces a fresh bottle, made to the highest safety recommendations, in under a minute. Even if your dh is at work, he can still help. In fact, he should still help. The hours between baby's bedtime and midnight could be your dh's turn. In the early days, I went to bed with dd and got my sleep between 7pm and 1am. Not ideal but it kept me functioning. If you bf, once it is established you can express so that your dh can do a feed or two. At 6 months, dd was only waking at 2 am and 4 am. By 18 months, just at 2am. She'd have a quick drink and then go back to sleep. She dropped feeds by herself and is a brilliant sleeper now. Admittedly, she is 4, but still. If someone offers to sit with baby so that you can grab a nap then let them. If you can sleep when baby does you should. My dd was also a terrible napper - she wouldn't sleep in the day for longer than 45 minutes unless she was on my chest. However, I am desperate for number 2, so it can't actually be that bad or I wouldn't put myself through it again.
Agree with shemozzle, it is an adjustment of course but the minute you see their little face looking at you through the darkness you forget the importance of sleep and the maternal instinct kicks in. Yeah it's tiring but try and do the notorious 'sleep when your baby sleeps' during the day (daytime naps as the best!) and don't be too hard on yourself.
All babies are different so your personal routine will differ from others, but it helps massively to talk about it, don't feel bad about it, and trust in those powerful hormones to get you through! (Dogs don't have the same effect as a baby!)
It is truly, truly awful. The worst thing is that, whereas with the dog you might be disrupted but back to sleep within 10 minutes, newborns take AGES to feed especially when very little. So not only are you up several times a night, but often for 45-1hr at a time. You just can't describe how terrible ti is!
BUT but but but. You get to have a beautiful baby who you love completely, unconditionally and it changes your life for ever.
Swings and roundabouts. Did I mention the sleep thing is awful?
You're all really helpful - your posts have definitely made me feel a bit better!
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