Riana memang senang tidur. Most of the time baringkan dia, dia nyanyi / bebel sendiri, and then she sleeps on her own. How angelic is that? She was like that ever since she reached 2 month old. So I was like, syukur alhamdulillah.
And then bam! she changed in an overnight. From a baby who sleeps through the night (10 pm - 5 am), to someone who wakes up every 2 hours again, just like when she was just born. Stress kan. Just when you thought that you've her sleep routine figured out, she changed.
So at first I thought it was a growth spurt sebab kalau tengah growth spurt dia memang bangun tidur kerap-kerap for feeding, which I don't mind at all. But it goes on for a few days so I rasa macam bukan growth spurt je ni. And she started being super fussy, easily over stimulated, crying a whole lot more.
I remembered reading about sleep regression, but I didn't go through it properly. So I was asking myself, eh takkan lah she's going through her 4 months sleep regression already, because she just turned 3 months old. Tapi bila I googled memang it can happened as early as 3 months old and as late as 5 months old.
Good job Riana. You boarded the early train -_____-"
My husband and I weren't prepared. We were clueless as to why Riana was suddenly behaving differently. Mula-mula ingatkan tu after effect because she just had her 3 months vaccination (6 in 1 vaccination), but macam highly unlikely aje. So then we thought she was teething, as she was drooling so much! Tapi macam tak jugak. We only got to know when I googled 4 months sleep regression and it seems like Riana has all those 'symptoms'. Contohnya, kalau dia terjaga in the middle of a deep sleep, dia macam susah nak tidur balik although I know she tried her best by sucking on her thumb for comfort. Usually macam 5 minutes dia suck her thumb tapi tak berjaya juga untuk tidur, and she'll start to feel miserable, and then she'll cry. And this is the cry your heart out kinda cry. Memang kesian sangat.
From what I read, to ease sleep regression, the baby should have enough rest throughout the day so not to be overstimulated, which will lead to overtiredness. Sebab baby once they are overtired, it's even harder to make them sleep, seriously. Jadi her awake time was limited to 1.5 - 2 hours only, which is just nice sebab selalunya lepas berjaga that long memang Riana dah menguap nak tidur dah.
So from our reading, we came out with a nap and sleep schedule yang bersesuaian with our lifestyle.
5.00 am - Wake up for feeding
6.30 am - Nap #1
8.00 am - Play time, feeding, bath time
9.30 am - Nap #2
11.00 am - Play time, diaper change, feeding
12.30 pm - Nap #3
2.00 pm - Play time, diaper change, feeding
3.30 pm - Nap #4
5.00 pm - Feeding, bath time (the start of bedtime routine)
6.30 pm - Sleep
9.30 pm - Night feeding #1
1.00 am - Night feeding #2
Riana memang tidur around 6 pm until morning 5 am. Alhamdulillah by scheduling her nap time and making sure dia tak stay awake lama sangat, she's not overly stimulated and she can sleep peacefully at night just wake up untuk feeding je (which sebenarmya is more like a dream feeding). Mommy je lah jadi zombie sikit sebab suddenly kena bangun malam balik untuk feeding -_-"
So our tips to go through sleep regression, based on our experience (I'm not an expert):
1. Prepare a sleep schedule as above and try to stick with it. I say try to sebab baby ni flexible kan kadang-kadang nak tidur, kadang-kadang buat macam mana pun tak nak jugak tidur. Adjust accordingly. But the goal is to get around 3-4 naps throughout the day.
2. Prepare a conducive environment for your baby to sleep i.e a dim room during nap time, some quiet time, etc.
3. Your baby is now a baby and no longer a newborn. So I believe apa yang kita buat now, it's gonna stick and become a habit. If we continuously help the baby to sleep, it's gonna stick as a habit, and that's what you really don't want. What we did was we let her try to sleep on her own, tapi kalau about 5 minutes and she still fidgeting and started crying sebab tak boleh tidur, only then we will rock her to sleep.
4. Read a lot about sleep regression. Reach out in forums and know that you are not alone, that many parents out there are facing the same phase. Know that this too shall pass, so just enjoy the moment.
Di zaman GST (haha tak habis-habis GST kan, but seriously!), kalau dapat barang free, memang tak patut lepaskan peluang. Especially consumable like diapers, which we use about 6-8 (or more!) each day.
Jadi tahukah anda new parents out there, that we can get free diaper samples? Yes, you read it right, FREE samples dari Mamy Poko, Huggies, Diapers, Merries, etc.
Sebenarnya bagus kalau kita dapat cuba dulu sample sebab barulah kita tahu anak kita sesuai dengan cutting diapers yang mana, diapers mana yang tahan lembapan dan menyerap lebih baik, diapers mana yang tak bagi anak kita kena nappy rash, eh banyak lagi lah. So memang elok request diaper samples ni.
Ada 4 samples yang MamyPoko offer. Jadi pilih satu (benda free, jangan tamak) dan click button 'Get Your Free Sample Diaper!!' Isi form dan tada! Tunggu paling maksima sehingga 2 bulan (!) untuk sample diapers Mamy Poko anda. So bakal-bakal ibu, baik isi sekarang masa baby belum lahir lagi sebab samples ni memang lambat sikit nak dapat.
Sejujurnya, tak pernah tahu pasal brand ni pun until I googled free diaper samples :P
So yes, let's try this brand. Tapi malangnya hanya tape diapers yang ditawarkan dan size available are only for Newborn and size S. Besar kemungkinan by the time diaper ni sampai (which is in 4-5 weeks time), Riana dah tak muat lagi diaper ni.
Caranya pun mudah saja. Just click 'Sample Request', isi form and that's it!
Tak pernah juga dengar brand BabyLove ni sehinggalah menjadi seorang ibu. Ok, it's even easier to request free sample untuk BabyLove ni, just isi saja borang di link yang diberi, sebab kalau pergi ke main website, macam susah sikit nak jumpa link ni. Boleh request dua jenis samples, iaitu BabyLove Night and BabyLove Growpants.
Ok for this brand you need to sign up to be a Huggies Hug Club member. It's a bit leceh if u ask me, because you need to sign up by filling up a form, request for the sample, and after that you will receive a verification email which you have to click for the sample to be sent to you. Leceh kan, leceh kan. Tapi untuk barang free, thehehe...
Huggies let you choose two samples. Either Huggies Dry or Huggies Ultra plus Huggies Dry Pants. Yang bestnya dalam tempoh 6 months, boleh request sekali lagi the free sample, I guess untuk cater anak yang makin membesar and their diaper size change.
Huggies menjanjikan penghantaran ke rumah anda dalam masa 2-3 minggu (quite fast actually).
This is our most favorite brand sebab currently Riana memang pakai Drypers Wee Wee Dry. The price is reasonable for its quality dan paling penting sesuai dengan kulit Riana. No nappy rash. No leak. But so far memang no leak sebab I sebagai Mommy yang rajin memang tukar diaper every 3 hours hehe.
But just like Huggies, kena isi form jadi ahli dulu and then baru dapat request for the free samples. No biggie.
Jadi let's click click away dan dapatkan diaper percuma!
So this was what I experienced, even before I missed my period and did the UPT test.
1. Back pain
Like, severe back pain. It wasn't the same as back pain during menses. It was much more painful. I even went to the doctor thinking there was something wrong with my back. I almost wanted to call makcik urut for a massage, thinking I might have strain my back during exercises (thank God I didn't. Call the makcik urut I mean). It went away after a few days though.
(Only later did I understand that the pain was caused by the ligaments loosing, to give way for the uterus to expand.)
Fever, cough, flu, even shortness of breath. And this too, I went to the doctor. Doctor gave me the medicine and she even thought that I have asthma. But my instinct was telling me not to eat the med given. So I didn't. All of the sickness went away after a week though.
(I then learned that this is actually a natural way for your body to reduce the immune system, so that the body won't be rejecting the fetus later.)
Like, extremely tired! I was coming back home with hubby during lunch time, and guess what, I dozed off everyday like a baby. Even hubby noticed, because I never sleep during the day. Fatigueness went away after the first trimester. My energy level just picked up from there.
(This is actually how your body responses to the changing hormones. Yes you, hormones.) 4. Can't fit into my cloth
I just bought a jubah online which I tried on (hubby even helped me with the zipper), but then I brought it to the tailor the next day for alteration as it was too long. And when I wanted to try it on again, I can't fit in it already. Even hubby was clueless. I was gobsmacked, only 2 days ago I can fit in it!
(If you are like me, you'll just gain weight from this point on. Not to worry though, I gained a solid 13 kg during my pregnancy and now I'm only 2 kg away from my pre-pregnancy weight. Hello, skinny jeans!)
5. Late Period
I was 2 days late. But guess what, I did a 10 km run on that day. I wanted to do the pregnancy test, but hubby was telling me that I should enjoy the run and wait for when I'm 7 days late to test (And also if you do the test too early, it just can't detect your pregnancy).
And when I was 7 days late, I did the UPT test. It came out positive! (obviously)
p/s : I made it easy for hubby as he didn't have to deal with morning sickness, craving, or even mood swings (tak aci, kan?). My pregnancy was easy breasy that I now missed being pregnant! I stayed active all through my pregnancy. I traveled every week, I walked many miles every day, and on top of that I ensured that I eat right. Alhamdulillah it helped in making delivery easy too.