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Welcome to the Nurse-athon

Posted by on January 19, 2012

This post is part of the Breastfeeding Blog Hop hosted by The Slacker Mom and co-hosted by Happiness Redefined and The Gnome’s Mom.

Today’s topic for the Breastfeeding Blog Hop: Reverse Cycling


The first thing I thought of when I saw this topic was “I don’t know anything about reverse cycling.”   After reading the first 3 posts it hit me like a mac truck that I AM IN THE MIDDLE OF REVERSE CYCLING!!!!  I almost bawled my eyes out when I saw my days/nights written out word for word over at theslackermom.  I’ve never met this person in my life and yet she knows what I’m going through.

At first I thought my 6 month old was fussy at night because we had started solids.  Then I decided it was because he was learning to crawl.  I even blamed it on a growth spurt!  I posted Monday about being up every 45 minutes ALL NIGHT LONG called “A New Chapter in the Sleep War.”  I even say he’s not awake or hungry…..of course he couldn’t possibly be hungry every 45 minutes.

I was WRONG he is HUNGRY!  When I nurse him I can hear him swallowing.  He will continue to fuss and cry until he is nursed and put back into bed.  That’s the only way he will go back to sleep.  It’s a nurse-athon around here as soon as the sun goes down!

Yet another thing my breastfeeding books & friends forgot to mention!  How are we handling it?  I’m NOT! 

*deep breathe* “I’m handling it…..this will pass….please make it pass!”

During the day he’s WIDE AWAKE and busy!  Sometimes he will have a fussy moment or two, but nothing I do will make this kid nap.  This kid has got places to go and things to do since he started crawling!  I have tried nursing and then rocking for HOURS (literally 2-3 hours) nonstop, there is no nap.  I’ve even put him in his crib and told myself he will sleep— he plays… totally happy but awake.  I even tried napping with him, but that doesn’t always work either.

The last two days I’ve tried nursing him every hour from 5 pm until bedtime 9 pm.  I offer, but he’s just not interested he would rather play with dad!  We implemented a bedtime routine that I’m clinging to like a swimmer lost at sea.  This all seems to help, but has yet to FIX the problem.  I am still up every hour all night!

There is just too much going on in the world for my active baby!

Since he doesn’t sleep in our bed I do have to get up and get him from his crib.  Thank goodness it’s in our room or I would have slept in the nursery floor by now!  I nurse him with little light, when he’s falling back asleep I turn out the light, and put him back to bed.  I have enlisted my poor husband to assist a few times a night to put the baby back to bed or bring him to me!  Bless Don’s heart he’s been such a trooper through all of our breastfeeding battles!


After reading over the blogs linked up below and I have decided to try:

  • nursing him with ZERO distractions
  • to be patient the 5th time he comes off when I know he should be hungry
  • continue to offer during the day as often as possible

I have no answers for you …. just my story to know that you are NOT ALONE.  This is a phase and it will pass.  I’m not 100% sure it’s reverse cycling, but it sure sounds like my very active baby, our 2-3 minute daytime nursing, and million night nursing sessions.

Did your baby go through reverse cycling?  Had you ever heard of reverse cycling?

15 Responses to Welcome to the Nurse-athon

  1. Suzanne

    One more thing…. Why does everything always happen to me?!

  2. Hamadryad

    Hmm. . . 1) A couple if thoughts. I used to read a loud to my kiddos a couple of times a day while I nursed (I was trying to reduce my stress levels & I love to read). If I had it to do over, I’m finding audiobooks from the library are awesome & I would go that route. I did it in a calm room (so the boring dark room would be probably be great) 2) I’d be afraid I’d get bored or stressed about just sitting or fall asleep out of exhaustion w/o the mental stimulation of the read aloud or audio book. & 3) I wore a necklace that they could fiddle with. My kids are as easily bored as I am. I don’t I went through reverse cycling w/either kiddo (I’m sorry you are) but my Rowan was a marathon nursing all of the time due to a fast metabolis & I swear sometimes I felt like a human hose night & day for days at a time. Hmm & if he just won’t settled, I’d be temped to pump during the day & request hubby to take the night shift at least 1 weekend night so you could get some REM sleep which would make coping easier the rest of the time.

    • Suzanne

      Good ideas – BUT any noise and he stops nursing. Yesterday I had to put down the kindle, turn off iPod, and EVEN turn off the ceiling fan! The CEILING FAN!!!! I have a nursing necklace, but he ends up chewing on it instead of nursing. **head to desk** As for bottles that would be a wonderful idea, but if Don comes to just pick him up in the night he just cries LOUDER! Perhaps an idea for afternoon nap though.

      If there was ever a test of patients and a need for meditation this week has been it.

  3. Gaby @ Tmuffin

    My kids were both frequent night wakers. It gets really awful. And then it gets better. I tried everything–feeding more, feeding less, probiotics, coccyntal… Actually, feeding less during the day–nursing every 3 hours instead of having him snack every hour or two–helped. That got him to switch from nursing every 20 minutes to nursing every 3 hours at night. It would piss me off when people complained about having to get up 1-3 times with their baby at night, since I was up 1-3 times an hour. But it always changed every 2 weeks. I felt like I couldn’t even try to be consistent, because my kids weren’t consistent. So I just went with the flow. You’re right–you are not alone! :)

    When it comes to napping during the day, can you put him in a baby carrier on your back and go about your business? That’s the only way my 1-year-old naps many days, and at least I can still get stuff done.

    • Suzanne

      You are right! I’m just going with the flow right now. I know he’s working on lots of developmental milestones so now is the time for patients.

      I did decide to just pop him in the carrier and go on with my life today. It made my day a thousand times better! I don’t know why I thought him crawling was a good reason to put the carrier away.

  4. Vanessa

    I went through this some with my daughter. She slept through the night at 6 weeks but at around 5 months she started waking up. I began to marathon nurse her between 5 pm and 9 and she finally started sleeping again. Turns out she was just hungry and wasn’t getting enough during the last feeding to keep her full. She also would not take a nap after about three months. We tried everything. Finally I just began putting her in her crib even if I knew she wasn’t sleeping. Atleast she was resting and not crawling all over. She would play for an hour or two in her crib and then she began to fall asleep. It took months for her to actually take a real nap but she was getting rest in her crib. Now at 2 she is a champion napped and sleeper.

    • Suzanne

      I keep trying to remember this is a phase! Really nice to know that not every baby naps. I was getting pretty freaked out about the napping and thinking about cutting out my ONE cup of coffee every morning. I really need that coffee after such long nights!

  5. Jenny K

    I will get better! He won’t wake at night to nurse forever! :) And trust me…..once he stops and begins sleeping through the night, you’ll actually miss it a little. :)

  6. Suzanne

    I did miss it the first time he slept through the night. In fact, I totally freaked out! Then I got used to it, but he forgot to send me a memo that he wasn’t sticking with any schedule. :)

  7. Nikki

    So yep, that pretty much sums it up ;) Why didn’t I read this when you first posted it? Then I would’ve realized there was a name for our “condition” LOL