I used to dread the night feeds when baby was first born. Mainly because I’ve never been a night person. I’ve always been a morning person and would usually start dozing off on the couch around 9.30pm. Yes i know. That is very very early for an adult but I would be in bed, by the latest around 10.30pm, and sleep for a good 8 to 9 hours. Anything else was deemed “an awful nights sleep”. Little did I know.
Obviously the hibernation style of sleeping went out the window when baby boy arrived. The first few weeks were a wee bit hard as baby boy would wake every 2.5 hours. Each feed in itself would take an hour so I’d sit and clock watch and think about how much sleep I was going to get that night. After the euphoria of a new baby wore off, I would sit feeding, and feel my head loll, and then jolt upright violently. Thankfully, over time, I settled into a good night time routine. It became slightly more interesting after i switched over to full bottle. Bottles can be faffy at the best of times. But when you have to actually leave your bed to prepare a feed, in the middle of the night, it can feel like hard work!
After 4.5 months of night feeds you would think I’d have it all mastered into a smooth intrinsic quick operation. And I have. Well. I have kind of mastered it. If you disregard the bumps, kicks, quick shuffling in the dark and occasional “what’s the noise? Oh, the baby needs feeding”, then yes. Yes of course! I have it all mastered.
It goes something like this:
1. Baby starts initial shuffling and noises for a feed
2. I wonder what the noise is, establish I indeed have a baby that needs feeding and reach for phone in the dark to see the time. I am usually half wishing it’s around 5am and that baby has slept through the night. It’s usually around 3am though. Quick loud whisper to OH to put lamp on.
3. Shuffle out of bed in the dark and quickly exit room to make feed, without further stirring the half awake baby. Bang into various objects on the way out and make mental note to clean it up in the morning. (Mental note will erase itself about 5 seconds after this as memory is so shite post pregnancy)
4. Make feed and count the number of scoops of formula out LOUD just to be sure. (Do you know how hard it is to count to 4 in the middle of the night when you’re half asleep?). Shake bottle violently in an attempt to cool down and stick under cold tap in an attempt to speed up cooling down process.
5. Shuffle back into pitch black bedroom and hiss at OH to put lamp on.
6. Pick up baby who is now very much wanting feed and search for feeding / maternity pillow frantically on the bed. Find pillow being hugged by OH and prise from his hands.
7. Now this is the crucial bit. Settle with baby with feeding pillow under one arm, phone in one and bottle in other. For any Friends fans out there you’ll remember how Joeys agent Estelle would light up a cigarette every time the phone rang yelling “hold onnnn, hold onnnn, hold on!! Go!” that’s me, but the bottle version. Obviously I’m only yelling in my head. Else that would be bad.
8. Feed baby and switch Twitter on. Aaaand relax. Or at least try to keep awake through feed.
9. Burp sleeping baby and settle him back into basket. Try to quietly clamber over OH and turn lamp off.
10. Settle back into bed and wonder if baby will now sleep for 5 hours straight.
11. Repeat whole process 3 hours later (unless it’s day time. In which case I am already hugging the feeding / maternity pillow!)
Anyone else do it smoother? I think not 😉