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How do you get going again after pregnancy?

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14/10/2007 at 21:06
Hello all

Well after a very random couple of days with Megan, we've decided that we need to try and enforce some routine because she's not for establishing one of her own. She sleeps well after some feeds but mostly just grizzles between feeds and isn't getting enough sleep. The midwife said to let her sleep and not wake her to feed but to be honest that wasn't working as she would have one long sleep and then grizzle for the next 6-7 hours. It was all so random that we just had no idea what was going on with her and we are exhausted.

So had a quick skim through Gina Ford and we started today trying to ensure we feed every 3 hours or so (sometimes its turned into 4 hours) to try and get her used to the feed/sleep routine which she just isn't in the groove with at all at the moment. Has anybody stuck to Gina Ford (religiously, loosely or otherwise) and had found it works? Or have you tried to adapt some of Gina Ford to your own routines.

She is also a very sucky baby so we have been trying a dummy today to get her settled. Much as I'm against dummies, DH and I are at the point where our sanity requires us to do something, and if settling her with a dummy is what it takes then so be it. She will eventually suck her thumb or finger I think - she is giving it a try every now and again but is still too young to master it yet I think!

JT and Minks - I didn't feel cheated, let down or a failure by having to have a c-section, you've got to roll with it in labour and do what it takes to get a healthy baby. I just felt it might have been more real to me if I'd actually delivered Megan vaginally, rather than the surreal process of being able to see the reflection of in the theatre operating lights of 2 people guddling about in your insides to pull out your baby!!

Righto... must go - yet another feed!

14/10/2007 at 21:34


 MR, we do a Gina Ford/Baby whisperer combo.  I try for the Eat Activity Sleep thing from baby whisperer but to be honest Louise tends to sleep such short times during the day that we are more like eat activity sleep activity eat.  I try to follow the gina ford thing of no more than two hours after baby awoke he should be back in bed and it does help.  We now do 3 hourly feeds fairly religiously and ever since we introduced some semblance of a routine our lives became much more manageable.  We do the following:

7.15 or whenever she wakes nappy change 

7.30 ish - 8.00ish feed

8.30 ish singsong in bed!

8.45 Dress Lou

9.00 dress mummy whilst Louise watches lying on bed.

9.30 ish - 10.00ish sleep

10.00 - 10.30 gym time!

10.30 feed (timing depends on first feed - it's always 3hrs from feed)

then some playtime until approx 11.30 - 11.45 when we try for a bigger sleep.  Rarely works but the plan is to get at least 45 mins and hopefully an hour.  There tends to be at least 20 min battle to get her to go down though. 

1.30 feed then more playtime

3.45 - sleep, usually about 30 mins max - quite often go out for a walk to get her to sleep at this time.

4.30 - 5.00 ish feed

6.15 bathtime

6.45 feed

7.15 bed

The key for us was establishing the 5pm - 7.30pm times as the rest of it all kind of fell into place after it.  Louise loves her bath so that works well.  It's just what works for you but I do find that if she is grizzling lots, such as this afternoon, a long walk tends to get her to nod off and it's good exercise for me too!

I don't know about the c section versus vaginal delivery.  I still forget I'm a mummy sometimes and after I gave birth I just lay on the bed til people came to visit and then when Lou started to cry I stated matter of factly that I hadn't touched her all day as I didn't know what to do with her.  think I was in shock but no one had come to me to tell me what to do!  My mum then showed me how to change her nappy and eventually we tried to feed.  Don't think it helped that it was a sunday as there was hardly any staff.

15/10/2007 at 10:05

forgot to mention the 11.15pm feed!

15/10/2007 at 14:03

I'm not fully ready to join you ladies just yet, but I'm another lurker....  Can I just ask a question on breastfeeding though please?  Does it have to be on-demand, or can you still attempt a routine of every 3 or 4 hours whichever as you might if you were using bottles?  I haven't a clue.......  My MLU wants all ladies to give breast a go, but will assist if you don't feel able or even want to so I know theres plenty of help around the corner.  Just wondered about establishing some sort of routine?  Is it possible?  EF - I know you were feeding initially yourself, are you still?

Not due for another 8+ weeks yet but wanted to try and get things like that in my mind before the Bean arrives and takes me unawares.  I know its all trial and error, but just wasn't sure.

Thanks Ladies.

DD xx

15/10/2007 at 14:09

Hi MR. I followed Gina's Contented twins book pretty religiously to start with just to establish the routine, but by 12 weeks we could be adaptable with the routine. Its all a matter of maths. Add up their sleep during their day and keep below her recomended sleep hours, if it all goes wrong cos you are out and about, but try to keep feeds roughly at the right times.

Both boys slept from 11pm till 7am from 12 weeks, which was fab given they were a bit prem, and slept through 7pm till 7am from 6 months. I think lots of what she writes is really useless other bits less so. She was insistent that with twins you should wake the same baby first each time to feed, but to be honest I could never remember who I had fed first last time, I did have a boob for each baby though one of her recommendations, so that helped to know who I had fed!!!!

Its hard in the beginning waking sleeping babies to feed them, but it pays off when they just fall asleep 9am, wake up at 10am, fall asleep for their lunchtime sleep and wake naturally at the right time. It also means you are feeding more in the day which equates to feeding less at night, all common sense really.

15/10/2007 at 14:10
I followed a routine DD and breast fed twins till 6 months. It worked really well, see above email.
15/10/2007 at 19:38

MR, we used the Gina Ford Contented Little Baby routines too, although not as religiously as some.  In the beginning we used to wake Kit at about 2:30am (or whatever it says in the book) but sometimes it took ages for him to wake up enough to feed as he might be sound asleep.  It did get him into a pattern of feeding once in the night though rather than randomly waking up, which was great.  After a while we just allowed him to wake naturally for his middle-of-the-night feed rather than waking him ourselves.  Like MM's twins, Kit slept from 11pm-7am from 11 weeks, then started going through 7pm-7am from 6 months when we started weaning.  I think he would have gone through from 7pm-7am sooner if we'd tried, but we were reluctant to cut out his 10:30pm bottle until he'd started solids.  We have always stuck to GF's suggested feed times fairly religiously though.

The one thing I haven't managed to do is follow GF's nap times.  I could never get Kit to last from 7am until 9am initially - he would always get tired by 8:30am so I just put him down early.  To start with he never wanted to sleep for very long and this meant that if I followed the idea of putting him down approximately 2 hours from when he last woke, he had to go down again at 11:30am.  So that's what I used to do.  As he's got older he goes longer between naps but his longest nap is always the morning one, not lunchtime as GF suggests.  I've tried making his morning nap much shorter but he still won't sleep longer at lunchtime so now I just go with him.  He normally goes down from about 9am-10:00/10:30am, then from 12:30-1:30/2:00pm.  At the moment he won't have an afternoon nap - if I put him in his cot he just cries until I get him up again.  Today he dozed off for about 10 minutes in his pram.  He seems to be OK without an afternoon nap so I'm not forcing the issue.

Did any of you find that your babies started rejecting their bottles one solids were well established?  Kit's cut back quite a lot over the past week and although he's still having the recommended 18-20oz per day some of the milk feeds are a struggle.  He's not quite proficient enough with a beaker yet to switch to putting his milk in one, so I guess I just have to ride this one out.  It could be his gums as he's just cut two upper teeth and it looks as though there are another two very close to breaking through.  He's having milk in his cereal and baby rice and I've been giving him cheese sauces and yoghurt or fromage frais so am assuming he's getting enough calcium etc.

MM, what a pain about your race.  I hope you manage to find another one to do soon so that your fitness doesn't go to waste.  I didn't get out for my long run yesterday either.  I don't know whether it was the curry I ate Saturday night or a small tummy bug but after violent diarrhoea and awful pains in my stomach when I woke up, I didn't really feel normal until the evening.  Had planned to run today but hubby stuck on Piccadilly line and still isn't home so will have to wait till tomorrow now. 

15/10/2007 at 19:38

DD, yes I am still feeding her myself.  She gets 2 bottles a day of expressed milk too and sometimes 3 if I am out and about - so today Lou got boob at 8.15am (she slept 11.30pm - 8.00am and I had to wake her!), boob at 11.15 then bottle at 2.15, boob at 5.15 and is presently downing a bottle of expressed.   I think we were more on demand at the start but that wasn't deliberate and I tried to stick to the EASY thing from the baby whisperer from the word go but I just hated to wake her for a feed!  Now I have no qualms about it!! 

MR it may seem ages away but if you decide to take Megan swimming then you can get cute little speedos out at Macarthur Glen. I just got two swimsuits for Lou, one for now and one for 6 months plus.  Both speedo and cost £4.50 for them both.  The bigger was £4 and the other 50p!!  Also M&S outlet have their bodysuits cheaper out there - I got 7 of the pink and white short sleeved bodysuits for £5!

15/10/2007 at 19:42
The naps in all the routines are too long for us, I am lucky to get Lou to sleep for 45mins at any time of the day.  I'll let her have a long nap whenever she wants it as usually it's a complete tussle to get her to go down at all.  She's gone without a middle of the night feed since 8 weeks so we've been totally spoilt by her and I let her do her own thing sleepwise.  If it ain't broke don't try and fix it!
15/10/2007 at 19:47
I forgot - achieved my 5K target yesterday!  Had given myself til the end of October to do a sub 25 min 5K and on Sunday I managed 24.44. Took 55s off previous time.  Yippee!!
15/10/2007 at 21:24

Hey well done EF - that's better than the 5k I've just done...  Went out with the running group again today, none of the good 3 milers were there and I ended up with one other lady who was very nice (and whose husband disappeared onto the horizon) but wanted to walk up every hill...  It took 39 minutes to do the 3 miles!!!  Now I know I'm taking it easy at the moment to try and strengthen my feet but 13 minute miles are not in the agenda!!!  Because of the way the group works I wasn't able to pop off, suppose it was a good slow run!  Apparently the group leader will be back next week which takes the emphasis off me sticking with her.

MR/DD - I started out trying to get Ted routine using the Baby Whisperer.  Have to say that Gina Ford is just TOO rigid for me.  Ted is very contented, feeds every three to four hours and has sleeps at around 9.30, 12. and around 4pm depending on if we're out.  He usually has a couple of hours for the first two sleeps and about an hour in the afternoon.  Think it really depends on your baby and how much sleep they need to a certain extent.

MR - Glad you're not beating yourself up about the section as I know some people do.  You were so unlucky about the lights!  I had been forewarned in my NCT classes about that one so the first thing I did was look!  Have to say the sensation of being pulled about was quite strange too.  Hope you start to sort things out soon, the early days are tough but they're through before you know it. x

15/10/2007 at 21:55

MR, I am pretty much in the same boat as you. Have had about 4 terrible days with JP, and got to the end of my tether today! Had to get Ben to come home from work because I just didn't think I could cope anymore. Basically I have been b/feeding exclusively and enjoying it when it was going well, but just recently JP has wanted to feed constantly and won't settle at all (has only had about 6 hours sleep in the last 24!). Have given him a formula supplement tonight and he is a bit better, but not much. Going to try some GF tomorrow and see how I go! Fingers crossed. xx

15/10/2007 at 23:06

JT, I envy you the day sleeps!!  I have to run about like a mad woman trying to put washes on and tidy up in half an hour. Fortunately Lou can keep herself entertained pretty well on her gym so I can put her on that whilst I get some food for myself.

good luck TB!

16/10/2007 at 08:04

Hello all, been missing off here for a while as all a bit mad - J has just had chickenpox and currently waiting to see if Scarlett gets it (hoping not yet as 7 months seems a bit hideous to be dealing with all the scratching and stuff!!).

 MR - re the routine thing, like the majority of the others I used a mixture of the Gina Ford/Baby Whisperer ideas.  This was after three weeks of demand everything with no. one child and very little sleep.  Tried to stick to as much of the Gina Ford as possible, although some of it was just too prescribed. Like Minks, neither of mine were able to last until 9am for morning sleep so I just put them down when they showed signs of getting tired. Joshua did lunchtime sleep brilliantly, Scarlett is less inclined to follow this (must be the girls!!) but I do try and make sure that she has no more than the minimum suggested sleep for the stage they are at (as MM said).  Also go for the no more than 2 hours awake thing if we really get out of synch.  It really has worked for us and both children naturally fell into their own version of a routine. Scarlett went through with a 1030pm feed from about 10 weeks and all the way through from about 5 months (that being 7pm to 6.30-7.30am).

Anyway, must go as manic run round to get everyone ready for my trip to the gym! Will try and backtrack and catch up later.  WELL DONE on the 5km EF, that's brilliant and boo to you JT for your slow plod, but still better than none I guess!


16/10/2007 at 09:14

Tatty are you around the 6 week growth spurt time? They have a growth spurt roughly every 3 weeks for the first few months, and the 6 week one is hell. This is the only time I felt I couldn't cope with the twins and unfortunately the one time hubbie was away on business!! We had feeding all day and all night for about 48 hours, and I cried for most of this time too!!!, and resorted to a bedtime bottle shortly after this! If you can get through it it will settle down again, its the babies' way of increasing your milk.

Also read 'useful' where I wrote 'useless' in my last post!!!! I used gina as none of the other books had a twin routine, and I needed  a pretty rigid routine with two babies! I'm that sort of person I have to say, I like to know whats coming next. I also like to have proper running schedules so guess its all tied in with my personality, hubbie is pretty similar. We used to wake our two for the dream feed around 10.30pm, which I used to express for and go to bed early, then we used to wait until they woke for the middle of the night feed. If one woke I used to wake the other though. They would generally last from then until 7am, except sometimes we used to get a 5am wake up call for a feed, I used to then just give them a small feed and top up at 7am to keep them on schedule.

Have entered two more halfs before xmas in the hope I'll be OK for one of these. HV told me yesterday that babies are ill non stop when they first start childcare. Great!!! Still coughing my guts up so was sensible not to race!!!

16/10/2007 at 09:22

mm - re: colds - jacob (and consequently hubbie and i) had colds non-stop from when he started at nursery (dec last year) until march.  this summer, i've also had 2 lots of tonsillitis and have now had a cold, tongue ulcers and cold sores for 3 weeks.  hubbie also has them as does my mum as she visited last week!  i asked the doctor recently why i was ill so much, and she told me to blame jacob!  the funny thing is that, although he does get sniffles, he's nowhere near as ill as us.

janie tri - i remember those monumental breastmilk poos.  jacob used to wait until hubbie came home from work and would do one while sitting on his lap.  inevitably, it would escape and run down hubbie's leg! tee hee!

jacob had a little bit of left-over biryani for tea on sunday (first curry he has had), so we had the most enormous nappy yesterday.  he insists on playing with his willy while you change him, so i had a right old battle on my hands, trying to keep his hands off his willy (which was covered in poo), his feet out of his nappy etc etc.  no more biryani for him for a while!

16/10/2007 at 09:45

Our two had curry last week, and no monumental difference in nappies. My two are pretty disgusting at the best of times as they eat so much fruit and veg I think. They were exposed to a lot of curry when in the womb ((my one craving!!!) and while I was breast feeding so I wonder whether they are used to it. It was a thai style curry but we use korma paste instead of thai paste, but we did add a small amount of extra chilli. They loved it. Means we really can start giving them what we eat, makes life so much easier.

You have made me really worried now CM about getting ill. My next half is in 3 weeks, and then about 5 weeks till the one after that. Maybe attempting a marathon is a bad idea!

16/10/2007 at 10:00

Tatty have to say a growth spurt sprang to my mind too.  I remember the mw coming round after Ted had had one at about 3-4 weeks and I was nearly on my knees!  They can last for 48 hours but do go!!!

CM - LOL re the poo - Ted did that to hubby at the weekend - absolutely everywhere much to his horror!

MM - hope you don't catch too many colds from your two, would be a right pain after all the training.  I'm just getting to the stage where I think I need to start to increase my mileage now (as well as speed!!!)

CC - hope that Scarlett doesn't get CP, my friends little girl got it at around 4 months and she was ok considering, she said it was far easier with the baby than her two year old.

EF - know what you mean about batting round the house, Ted has had an early sleep today (he was awake a bit in the night which is unheard of for him) so the baby gym is proving to be a god send!  I do have days where everything goes topsy turvy and Jon gets home to the dishwasher half empty, washing hanging out the washer, junk everywhere - need I go on?!

MR - forgot to say yesterday we went throught the whole dummy thing, I was ADAMANT that I was not having one - I lasted the first night in SCBU as Ted is a very suckly baby.  SCBU kept asking if we had considered a dummy, after an hour with my finger in his mouth at 4am I knew why! 

Well need to go and get on, it's grim day here, think we need to make up some entertainment today as I can't see us going walking!

16/10/2007 at 10:29

You can tell am pinned to a desk today ;o) Lots of posts!

We tried desperately with a dummy after saying we weren't going to have them, my two just spat them out. However they are both avid thumb suckers, you can actually hear J over the baby monitor sucking away! Another problem to deal with no doubt later on, but not going to worry about it for now.

Had them weighed yesterday and talking about growth spurts, J has jumped from the 25th to the 50th centile and weighs a monster 22lbs, H has gone from 2nd to just above 9th at 20lbs. Wow!

16/10/2007 at 10:34

warning: 'poo' post, so don't read if eating! 

MM - i'm glad you said that about nappies.  jacob eats SO much fruit that his dirty nappies are always foul and usually pretty expansive.  (the curry one was just enormous though.  the biggest i have ever seen!)

because we use washable nappies, you end up with it everywhere trying to remove as much of it as possible by flushing it down the loo.  and our upstairs loo has a saniflow on it so we can't flush even flushable liners down it because it blocks.  so i have to walk downstairs to the downstairs loo with the 'parcel' wrapped up in one hand and jacob on the other hip - trying to keep the two apart!

anyway, nursery were getting me a bit worried because they were writing on his report that his nappies were 'loose'.  i was actually considering what else i could give him to eat after his main course that wasn't fruit.  i never cook him puddings and he isn't vastly keen on things like yoghurt and rice pudding anyway.  so he always has about 3 bits of fruit after every meal (grapes / berries / pears etc) and he absolutely loves it.

i was worried that maybe things were going through him too quickly and that it might be irritating his stomach - not that he shows any signs of it.  but you saying that about your two makes me less worried!

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