Is your infant on a schedule? How old were they when this started? Did you nudge them towards it, or was it more like a natural rhythm they found on their own?
Terry started a feeding/sleeping schedule when he was 2 weeks old, all on his own. Then he strayed from it to go through a growth spurt that lasted a little over a week (and he really grew!). Then he got himself back on it at 4 weeks, so he’s very predictable. He never cries when he’s hungry, because I know what times he wants to eat.. so when it’s close to that time, and he starts opening his mouth & looking side to side for boob, I give it to him. He never has to make a sound. If he’s crying, it’s because he has gas & wants someone to burp him again. Or because he’s had an especially explosive poop and wants his diaper changed, but that always comes with awesome sound effects that give it away.
He always eats at 6:30 am, 7:30 am, 9 am, 11:30 am, 2 pm, 4:30 pm, and then again at 6 & 7 pm. I usually stay in bed with him until after his 9 am feeding. Then he falls back asleep, and I get up to have breakfast. He sleeps all day until after his 2 pm feeding. Then he usually stays awake until we go to bed, unless we go somewhere with him in the sling. That instantly knocks him out.
He used to be very fussy all afternoon/evening, which was funny because he was always hyperactive in the womb during that time too. Every time my husband would call me to say he was on his way home from work during my pregnancy, I’d be feeling his crazy gymnastics in my belly. It would last into dinner time, until around when I’d lay down to sleep at 10 pm.
So Terry used to be hyper and cranky all evening, eat at 9 pm, then need to be calmed down & walked around with before he’d sleep. But since we started doing co-bathing or co-showers whenever Patrick gets home, he has been calm all evening! He loves that so much. Now I eat dinner either between his 6 & 7 pm feeding, or afterwards at 7:30. He either falls asleep & gets carried up to bed with us, or quietly lays down with us around 9 or 9:30 pm and goes to sleep without a fight. He doesn’t do his 9 pm feeding anymore.
He wakes up to eat at 11:00 pm & 3 am every night. Usually without crying. I just feel him stretching and rooting around, and we fall back asleep together as he nurses. Most of the time Patrick doesn’t even wake up. But if he does, he’ll cuddle with us & change Terry’s diaper after he finishes nursing. Then Terry will just curl up next to us and go back to sleep. During the week when Patrick wakes up at 5 am for work, Terry will wake up then too, and again we’ll fall back asleep together as he nurses. But on weekends, he sleeps through that feeding.
I try my best to stick to this schedule. One time we went to the Navy Exchange and Commissary. He slept in the sling the entire time, and when we got back out to the car it was 1:30. I knew he’d want to eat at 2, and I told Patrick we should wake him up to feed him before we drove home. But he really was sound asleep, so we didn’t. We put him in his car seat, thinking we’d be home by 2. There was a traffic jam. Terry woke up at 2 screaming. We pulled the car over onto a shoulder of the freeway for me to feed him. My lesson was learned. He has an appointment with my midwife tomorrow at 2:15, and her office is a 10-15 minute walk from our home. I will be feeding him at 1:30 & wearing him in the sling on the way there so he’s in a good mood for his appointment!