Fenn – 1 year old!

Fenn’s is now 1 year old. Forgive me as I sob quietly… where did our tiny baby go?! To be honest she has always been adorable, but she is such good company now; I love every stage as she develops. 
Physical: Fenn mastered crawling at about 9 months and has been building up her strength and confidence since then. She has always enjoyed standing (with help) since she was a few months old, but she is now starting to go solo. She can manage about 20 seconds on her own, as long as she is distracted. As soon as she realises what she is doing she freaks out and sits down. She is walking really confidently with just one hand being held now, and this morning she took her first steps!! See below..

Her face seems to change every day. She looks so much like her Papa, and her face is starting to lose it’s baby roundness and get a little longer. She still has huge eyes though, and they are currently a khaki green/brown colour. Papa thinks she will have brown eyes and brown hair like him! 

Mental: She is so quick to learn! She knows the meaning of so many words and points to the objects when asked. She knows Mama, Papa, Mimi, Budson (the cat) apple, aeroplane, spider, kettle and tick tock clock. She claps along to ‘If you’re happy and you know it’ and knows exactly when to turn the page in all her books and can point out a picture of an apple when asked. Her favorite book at the moment is her Kiwi Old MacDonald board book. 

Verbal: “mamamamamaaa” all the time. She went through a phase of saying “Papa” and I’m sure she said “book”and “ballball”. The rest of the time is just cute babbling, squealing with delight and giggling. 😁

Teeth: Fenn finally got her first tooth through last week. Not bad going really! She loves having Steve (the tooth) brushed and demands it every time she sees her toothbrush. (Points and says ‘oooooffff, oooooff!’)

Food: She has reached the end of being spoon fed now, and demands to feed herself at every meal. She usually has a small pile of branflakes in milk with blueberries for breakfast, followed by a piece of my bagel with peanut butter on. A 10am snack of 2 baby puff crisps, a couple of apple slices and some raisins. Lunch is now a small sandwich or some kind of bubble and squeak fritters, followed by a biscotti. Afternoon snack is a rusk and some orange pieces and dinner now tends to be whatever we are having, cut up into small pieces. Gone are the purees and the spoon! 

She is also still being fed by me, with a feed first thing (6am), once at 1st nap (8.30am) maybe once at (3-4pm ish) if she wants it and then before bath time at 6.30pm. She also still wakes in the night for a feed/snuggle and although I would love to sleep through, I have no plans to night wean her just yet. I plan to carry on feeding her for at least another 6 months, or until she decided to stop. The feeds are gradually reducing, so it will happen when she is ready.

Sleep: Hmm, Fenny still isn’t a sleeper. After our cry it out attempt she now goes down to sleep at night without any fuss, which is great as we now get a few hours to ourselves. She goes down at 7pm and on a good night will sleep until 6am with only one wake up. A usual night has 2 wake ups (11ish and 3ish) and a bad night… You can imagine. Naps are still only 30 mins long on average, twice a day. 

  • Weight: 20lbs approx.
  • Height: Tall enough to cause trouble and reach everything she isn’t supposed to touch.
  • Teeth: One little stump and two erupting.
  • Loves: Blueberries, waving at planes, waving at anything else, Budson, raisins, eating in general, climbing stairs and crawling off half way through a nappy change.
  • Hates: Sleep, strawberries, tomato and being told ‘No’. 
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Extreme sleep deprivation or Baby torture.

Fenn doesn’t sleep. She is not a sleeper. This baby is not for napping…

I am writing this at 4.30am, during the 7th awake session Fenn has had tonight. I can see how sleep deprivation was used as a torture method. I would confess to anything in order to get just 3hrs straight sleep.

Fenn actually slept through the night for 7 hours at the age of 10 weeks old. “Yes!!” I thought, “this mothering stuff is easy!” then gradually as she got older, her sleeping got worse and worse. She would happily go all day without a nap if she could, and then sleep only 3-4 hours a night, split into 3 or 4 chunks.

I seriously have no idea how this baby is alive and functioning, let alone looking so cute and happy.

It seems as though all of my friends who have babies who either give formula or breastmilk from a bottle have babies who sleep through. Some of their crotchlings have been sleeping 8pm-8am since a few weeks old and when they try to sympathise and tell me “Little Bobby woke TWICE last night! I know how you feel.” I want to punch them in the throat. There are others who get it, others who are also breastfeeding with babies who won’t take a bottle, others with eyebags so big they drag on the floor. Some of their babies improved once on solid food, but not all and not Fenn. 

I am a human doormouse and before getting pregnant would happily sleep for 10 hours a night. Nearly 9 months of chronic sleep deprivation has left me in a very bad place, both physically and mentally. The exhaustion means that I can’t focus of things, I worry about driving, I only want to eat chocolate and carbs, I have barely enough energy to get through the day let anone excercise and I have zero tolerance to pretty much anything my OH does. I have no idea how we haven’t killed each other. But one of the worst things are the thoughts of hopelessness and uselessness, thoughts that I am a crap mumma and that Fenn would be better off without me… the scary thoughts that spring from that. 

The night before last was the straw that broke the camel’s back. We had both got to breaking point. Something had to change. We have tried almost everything to get her to sleep, different routines, foods, bedding, cot angles, dream sheep, white noise, dim light, stories, no stories, shooshing, you name it, but the crux of the problem is that Fenn has no idea how to get herself off to sleep. 

Time to go cold turkey on the cry it out.

I will keep a diary of the Cry it out process… stay tuned for updates.