Fourth Trimester Favorites

Thursday, October 29, 2020

Heidi turned 16 weeks old last week, and I have to say... the fourth trimester is REAL. Those first twelve weeks were an absolute blur of diapers, feedings, naps, joy and tears (from both of us). 

Overall, I feel like I had a mostly positive and manageable fourth trimester. Once I was feeling back to myself about 6 weeks post c-section, I felt like I could start finding my groove, but 6-8 weeks was the hardest for Heidi. Homegirl had a brutal witching hour and would go from my Happy Heidi to Not So Happy Heidi at exactly 5pm every day, and then stay Pissed The Hell Off Heidi until about 10pm every day. It was exhausting, and I can’t tell you how many times I googled “my six week old won’t (sleep/stop crying/nap)” during that time. I felt really lost and desperate until I realized it was just developmental. Snuggle naps became our daily routine, and I surrendered to the moment and just held my baby until she was through it each day. 

For Spenser and I, we definitely grieved the loss of together time in the evenings after he was finished with work. For five years our routine was dinner and TV until bed, and we really missed each other! We ate in shifts and took turns rocking her to sleep until she could be put down without springing awake. She started getting through it around 10/11 weeks, and by 12 weeks the witching hour was gone like clockwork. We had a complete night and day shift in our evening routine. She was going to bed more easily, and even started sleeping through the night.  

If I was going to do it again, and not in a pandemic, I would have asked for more help from friends or family during those evening witching hours. That was the time of day I was bone tired and just needed some rest, and she was needing the most from me. It was a recipe for a lot of stress and tears but... like everyone said, it passed! If you're entering this season, maybe plan for Grandma to come during that 6-8 week stretch to help in the evenings or hire a post partum doula. Some extra help during those rough weeks was really needed, and is something I feel like I will do differently if we have another baby. Pandemic parenting is not for the faint of heart and we are not in a rush to do this again.

Baby sleep aside, I thought it would be fun to round up some of our baby must haves that we have used and loved for Heidi. 

1) Ollie swaddle. We tried every swaddle available, and she hated all of them / could break out of all of them. The Ollie swaddle instantly calmed her down and really helped during those fussy witching hours to keep her calm and relax if she got overstimulated. They're expensive, but so worth it in my opinion.

2) Oogie bear. We were gifted the Nose Frida, but have yet to use it. Even at 4 months, it’s too big to fit in her nose. Someone recommend the OogieBear and it works great to pick that tiny little nose and get her boogs out so she can breathe properly! 

3) In home lactation consultant: our LC was covered by insurance. We had 12 visits- once a week for the first twelve weeks and we NEEDED them. I love breastfeeding, but like a lot of people, we had some serious challenges. Heidi had a tongue and lip tie that required surgical correction, laryngomalasia (also known as a floppy air way), I have a fast letdown and an over supply, and after her oral tie reversal, she developed a disegulated suck/swallow reflex that prevented her from being able to latch to a bottle, either. We had so many challenges breastfeeding and  and we would not be where we are now without the help of our lactation specialists. Both Heidi and I have loved our nursing journey and I’m so glad we didn’t have to give it up when it was hard. 

4) Cloud island jammies. So yourself a favor and just buy these in every size. The two way zipper is life. Nothing else compares when you’re changing diapers in the middle of the night! 

5) Lavie breast massagers. IF YOU MAKE MILK YOU NEED THESE! They heat up and vibrate and help soooo much if you get engorged/need to work out a clog. These saved me from mastitis a few times, I'm convinced of it.

6) This electric nail file. This is the only way to file a baby’s nails. The only way. This was definitely invented by a very smart mother. All I can say is, you’re welcome .

7) Butt paste brush. I thought this was so *extra* but it has turned out to be one of my most used baby items. Diaper rash cream is thick as heck and gets everywhere. This little booty spatula gets it right where it needs to go, and not under my fingernails. 

Some other things we loved: 

Noodle & Boo everything. We use all of their products on Heidi and it is so wonderful. We have the shampoo and lotion, some wipes that we use for after she eats, the hand sanitizer smells like baby powder and I bought more for my car! I'm really picky about the way she smells and this is my favorite!

Kyte sleep sack. We invested in this sleep sack after trying to find the perfect fit to keep her warm on cold days and cool on warm days (our house is weird with controlling temp). The bamboo keeps her from overheating, but it’s warm and puffy like a blankie. She moved out of the swaddle completely at 9 weeks, so I wished I had had this on my registry bc it wasn’t cheap! We have since bought the 12mo size and the 18mo size and love them! 

This play gym. Before having Heidi I was anti toys that light up/make noise. Now I know what's good for me :) This was the first toy that entertained her enough for me to walk away/do something else while she played. Even now, she still plays with the piano portion! The music is actually pretty pleasant, too!

I haven't been able to blog as much as I would like given my new role as mom, working mom, pandemic working mom with no support... but I try to write these posts during Heidi's nap time on my phone and post them when I can. I've enjoyed writing so much but it's something that has to go to the back-burner when I'm overloaded :) 

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