First things first, the 4th Trimester is REAL folks! This is also known as the beloved newborn stage and the first three months of your baby’s life. However, I think the title “4th Trimester” is the absolute best way to describe it. You are adjusting to so many things, both baby and parents and it really takes about that long for them to adjust to life outside the womb.
Bringing home Lyla James was just about the most wonderful and frightening experience of my life. I remember when it was time to leave the hospital I just started bawling because surely they didn’t think I knew what I was doing enough to take care of her by myself! And let me tell you, it takes a village! I honestly don’t know how parents do the first three months without family and friends and a serious support group. So shoutout to my amazing family and friends that helped us during this time, especially my parents who came over just about every single day those first three months to help us!
Being a new mom I had absolutely no clue what I was doing. I’d never changed a baby’s diaper before in my life. I was absolutely TERRIFIED to sleep while she was sleeping. In fact, the first three nights at home we had different people come stay with us so that we could all take shifts watching Lyla sleep because I was just so nervous about it. God bless them too because that sweet baby WORE THEM OUT!!
Lyla also cried for the first three months of her life. Literally. So. Many. Tears. Colic is a beating. It actually feels like a form of torture because you so desperately want to help this baby that you have the most overwhelming love for and nothing will make her stop. Keep in mind, our experience is also a bit crazy because while we were figuring out how to make it on 2-3 hours of sleep at a time, my husband also started radiation treatment for Hodgkins Lymphoma when Lyla was just 4 weeks old. He had only been out of chemotherapy a week when she was born! So, not only were we juggling a new baby, James’ full time job working night hours from home (with a screaming baby in the background of all his conference calls), but he was also going to radiation during the day. #crazytown
So this brings me to some of my favorite things that got us through the 4th Trimester when it comes to SLEEP! (Well, the baby’s sleep, cuz lets be honest, us parents are a walking zombie for a while!)
1. Halo Bassinest
When I realized that everyone taking shifts watching Lyla sleep was not a realistic plan I finally got the courage to put her in our Halo Bassinest. I LOVE THIS THING. It was absolutely the only place I felt okay about sleeping while she was sleeping. It could get extremely close to my bed and I could put my hand in there if I needed to check on her. For the midnight feedings I could just grab her and feed her in bed and then put her right back. It has breathable net on the sides that in case she were to get close to, she could still breathe which was priority for me. I’ve linked it below along with a few accessories. We had the standard halo and I wish I would’ve known about the mobile cuz it looks awesome, so I added that as well!
2. Velcro Swaddles
We weren’t consistent with the full swaddle until about week 6. We just didn’t know how important it was and thought maybe she liked to have her arms out. But if you know Lyla James, you know this chick is always on the move so it was actually to her benefit when we started doing the full swaddle again and helped her not wake herself up with her hands. She would almost sigh of relief when we would swaddle her.