Addison James is 4 months and 1 week old today. Where did these last 4 months go?? I can't help but think of how fast time has gone. I know 4 months is still so little, but I always feel like he's such a big boy now. My little baby boy who used to just fall asleep in my arms or hanging on the couch is now a little busy body. I love watching him grown, but also want it to stop. Such a weird mix of emotions. I miss the newborn stage already, however love where he is at right now and can't wait for all to come. Motherhood is weird. It's constant change, but at the same time routine everyday. Addison has been going through his 4 month sleep regression and to be honest, it's been a little rough. Short naps and multiple feedings in the middle of the night is no fun for anyone. Sleep is constant work in this household and I know so many of you feel me on that. I'm talking all things sleep, teething, products we love thus far and more in his 4 month update.
I am so happy I decided to do these updates and that you all were so interested in it. Looking back at the past few months is eye opening to see what we were going through such a short time ago compared to know. It's funny because you really don't realize that things happened just weeks ago. The saying goes... "The days seem long, but the years are short". This is so true it's insane. I try to remind myself that although things are tough and sleep may seem to be gone forever, everything happens so quickly. Babies move from one stage to the next just so quickly. It seems as though every time I think I have him figured out he changes again and I'm back questioning all I do. I know in just a couple weeks I'll be looking back at this 4 month sleep regression wondering how I survived, but also quickly forgetting how long the days felt.
All The Specifics
4 months or 18 weeks and 3 days
14 pounds - in the 19.75 percentile
24.75 inches - 31.22 percentile
6 pounds and 15 ounces & 19.75 inches
Addi is still on the smaller side when it comes to averages, but perfectly growing on pace for him personally. It's crazy because even though he is considered little I can't believe how big he is! My skinny little man has leg, wrist and thigh rolls now. Yes, I am obsessed with them. Hes growing out of clothes left & right and it always makes me a little sad/little excited every time he does. Again, motherhood is weird and such a mix of emotions. Addison's head is in he 90 percentile so we joke that he's just a kid full of brains.
We survived his 4 month shots and were a bit more prepared this time around. He hated getting them (obviously), but acted totally fine that evening. However, the middle of the night was not so well. He woke up screaming and was clearly in pain. I mean, his little leg has to hurt after something like that. It's tough as a parent to see your baby in pain. We gave him the smallest amount of Tylenol, snuggled, gave lots of kisses and put him back down. Much less traumatic than his 2 month.
Life With a 4 Month Old
4 Month Sleep Regression
Woofta. I almost just want to leave it at that haha. This 4th leap (the term leap comes for the app "The Wonder Weeks") has been a big one. It last for about 5 weeks and is filled with so much change for your little one. Add in teething and a 4 month old who is fighting sleep, and your days feel longer than ever. I've said it before and I'll say it again, it's tough work being a work from home mama. It would be hard with or without the work, but having that extra stress of wanting/needing to get things done kills me sometimes.
Addison had been sleeping through the night since about 1.5 months. Everything is a blur, but it was around then. We would have the occasional off night or a random feeding here and there, but overall so good. I kept reminding myself how lucky we were. I know lots of mama's out there that have been feeding multiple times in the middle of the night for months and I so feel for you! Around 3.5 months we started having more "bad" nights than good. Bad as in multiple feedings and only about 4 hours of a sleep at a time. I know that probably sounds amazing to some people, but after having 7+ hours of sleep it's brutal going backwards. Plus, on top of already being a short napper Addison started to fight naps which makes the entire process and day way more exhausting.
Addison's 3 hour newborn nap stage did not last long. He has been a short napper since about 2.5 months. I do a lot to try and make him sleep longer and sometimes it works. Most of the time it doesn't. I honestly don't even try super hard anymore because I end up using so much energy and getting so frustrated that it's not even worth it. I have spent an hour before trying to get him to fall back asleep. I've rubbed his arms, help calm him and sat there waiting. He will be so drowsy, but continue to fight it. So we'll spend an hour trying to sleep, but not getting anywhere which leads to both of us being unhappy. Not worth it in my eyes. I do everything I can to help him sleep as much as possible and that's all I can do.
There are the times that it does work and he'll fall back asleep for 45 minutes-1.5 hours longer. Those are magical days lol. I've read about everything I can to help make them longer. My mom told me I was a short napper too so there ya go. In my eyes, if he can sleep long at night and catch his hours there then I'm a happy mama. Obviously, the short naps don't help me achieve my work goals. I'm still trying to figure that schedule out, but I'm doing it. I've found that I need to have planned out the 1-3 main things I'm going to focus on and go from there. If I don't go into the day with a plan it's a total mess.
Putting Himself to Sleep
This is the number one thing you all have asked about. I started sharing in my stories a couple weeks ago that Addison was successfully putting himself to sleep. First thing to know, I have been working on this for weeks. Second thing to know, it doesn't work very single time. Patience is absolutely key. Third thing to know, every single baby is so different. Don't expect the same results and don't beat yourself up about it. Addison is a lover of movement. I shared that about him in is 2 month update (and probably his 3 month too!). He still sleeps in the rock-n-play best, but we are constantly switching things up to get him away from that.
I started having him nap in his crib around 2 months so he would begin getting used to his room and his mattress. I started the whole process of working on getting him to put himself to sleep around 3 months. The way I started was rocking him myself until he was just about to doze off and then set him down. Yes, lots of times he would wake up and we would start the whole process again. The times he didn't though were counted as a win. Again, he would only nap about 30 minutes, but it still counted. After doing that for a week or so I started just putting him in his moving rocker and letting himself go from there. Sometimes it worked sometimes it didn't (this is where the whole patience thing is big). I didn't start placing him in the crib to do that until a couple weeks ago. I knew he slept well with movement so that was the easiest place for us personally to begin.
Everyone's situations and routines are different. Listening to the cues Addison gives me is the hardest thing sometimes. He fights sleep so much. He could be rubbing his eyes and then when I swaddle him its an all out battle for 10-15 minutes until he actually calms down. Consistency is key. Yes, I have moments where I lose it. I just don't get why he could be screaming so much, but that's okay. I'm not perfect and I really don't want all of you thinking I am. I now try and go through a fairly similar bedtime routine every.single.time to help show him that it's time to sleep (more about this below). The nighttime one has the biggest differences, but still all very similar to help keep it consistent.
I usually pull him away from playing 20-35 minutes before I am going to lay him down. He will start to show me his cues and that's when I know to get him away from all the stimulation. The things I involve in every single sleep routine (day or night):
- Dimming the lights
- Have the noise machine on low
- Make sure the diffuser is running with lavender and eucalyptus
- Shut him into a bedroom
- Story time - If I've given myself enough time. Sometimes if it's rushed I will just hang with him on the bed or cuddle in the rocker to relax him
- Swaddling - We are working on slowly transitioning him out of this, but slowly. His hands can be his worst enemy sometimes. I share below the one's we like best.
- Pacifier - I know some people disagree with this and that's fine. It's what works best for him.
- Music - differs if it's daytime or nighttime (explain below)
- Kisses goodnight
For his nighttime routine we have sort of locked down something that works for us. He was struggling with waking up 1 hour after we would put him down for bed so we switched things up and it's definitely helped! We feed him a full feeding from a bottle right after he wakes up from his last nap. If it's bath night we will move into that right after because he loves the bath so it's not always the mot calming for him. If it's not bath night we will hang with him a little, go through changing and then bring him into a room for the above routine. Usually story time and chat time is longer on these nights. On bath nights I will sometimes include a baby massage, but I didn't want it to have to be a necessity for him. Once all of that has been done I will swaddle him up and breastfeed him (usually a full feeding) and lay him right down afterwards. He typically is still awake and will put himself down from there.
For daytime naps we have a bear in his crib (linked below) that plays 5 minutes of relaxing lullabies that I play right before kissing him goodnight. For bedtime I play a classic piano station on spotify thats on the entire time until I leave the room. He has always liked to be calmed by music.
All About Addi
I started placing Addi is his jumper a few weeks ago and it's so fun. I don't leave him allow at all because he is still just a bit smaller for it. He loves to bounce on his legs when we hold him so moving him to this with his neck being so strong already) was an easy decision. We do lots of tummy time and I'm slowly beginning to play with him in a way that makes him want to roll over to his tummy. We're not there yet, but I kind of tangle a toy and pull it back so he continues to follow it. I then help him kick over so he can start to see that it's possible. We have lots of animals that light up & move to have in front of him for tummy time. Addison is big into grabbing everything so I constantly have things around for him to hold onto. I know texture is big with him. I just bought some silicone rings to add on different toys all around the house. Figured anything he can grab and pull is good.
Story time is a favorite for both of us. The little books with the animal puppets are super fun and any books that make sounds or have things to grab are great. I like to bring these ones on the go to so we can help keep him entertained. I started reading to Addison right away because I think it can be so good for them developmentally. He's a huge fan of airplane around the apartment and doing funny things in the mirror. The smiles I get from him with those two things are the absolute best.
Teething is no joke. He started a little after hitting 3 months and it's slowly been building since then. He puts literally anything into his mouth and the drool is getting worse and worse each day. I can see some white on his bottom front teeth area, but nothing has popped yet. I've read it can happen in weeks or months after the first symptoms start. His favorite teethers are the simple rubber ones that are easy to fit into his mouth. We use the frozen ones too, but I have to help him with those. I just recently read about getting a washcloth wet and then freezing it for him to chew on so I'm going to try that. He loves putting blankets, burp clothes and all my clothes into his mouth so that might work really well.
I haven't tried any of the teething gels on his gums yet and can't decide how I feel about them. Numbing his gums seems weird to me, but it might be something we try in the future. He wears an amber teething necklace each day. I have received lots of DM's about people being against them and some articles sent my way. Again, each parent is different and will choose what they think is best for their children. I will say, we do not have him sleep in it overnight currently. I put it on him every morning and obviously watch him nap each day. For those who don't know, an amber necklace is meant to be a natural pain reliever. When against his skin it releases succinic acid and in theory goes into his bloodstream to help ease pain. Our nieces and nephews all wore them and I truly do think it works. Again, to each there own.
This little man is such a mama's boy. I can't say I dislike it, but there are times it can be a bit frustrating. Ever since he hit 3 months he started to have a bit of stranger danger. He would be totally fine in my arms and the second someone else would grab him he would start to cry. He has gotten a little better, but still prefers me over anyone else. To be honest, I don't think it's a huge surprise for a small baby to be obsessed with his mama. Especially since I am home with him all day everyday. It's been so fun seeing him react to me when I walk into the room or when Kirby gets home from work. Having your little recognize you and smile is the best thing ever.
Products We Love (Baby & Mama)
After 4 months I figured it was time to share some of the products we have been loving. From diaper cream, nipple cream, toys, shampoos, lotions, postpartum underwear, etc. I share everything below for you babes to check out. Remember, every baby & mama will like different things. Motherhood is full of trial and error.
As always, let me know if you have any questions about anything.