Monday, May 21, 2007

Log a rhythm

Pediatricians often ask parents to keep a log of feeding times and wet/dirty diapers for the first couple of weeks after a baby is born, especially if they are being breastfed, as one of the ways to make sure the baby is getting enough to eat. Sleep-deprived yet willing to do what we needed to do, we made an Excel spreadsheet and faithfully logged every feeding, every wet diaper, and every dirty diaper. The pediatrician never looked at the log when Baby B went for her two-week check-up, but we found it useful for ourselves--was it 20 minutes or an hour and 20 minutes since the last diaper? Events during the day start running together during this time--so we kept up with logging even after we didn't have to anymore.

Baby B will be four months old next week. We still keep this log every day.

I thought for sure we'd quit when Baby B started daycare--maybe just keep track of nursing times--but we still faithfully log everything into the Excel spreadsheet. It's not that we need to make sure she continues to gain weight well, as she's on track there. I think part of it is habit; you get into a rhythm of doing something and you keep up with it. However, I think mostly it gives me a sense of control in a situation where sometimes I have very little control. It keeps me organized and gives me a feeling of being on top of everything, and I like that. There's no harm in that, right?

But then I start to question how long I'm going to keep this up. If the natural stopping point originally was daycare, and we completely blew that, then what's the next stopping point? Will I still be logging wet and dirty diapers until Baby B is potty-trained? It seems like the next logical stopping point would be when I stop nursing, but at this point, I'm not sure how long that will be. Right now I'm thinking about a year total, or until my supply dwindles down if that happens first due to working. It seems overwhelming to think about keeping this log for a whole year, yet I start to become fidgety and lost when I think about not keeping it.

I guess it could be worse. We could be keeping a log of everything she does throughout the day...naps, playtimes, etc. Hey, we had to draw the line somewhere, otherwise we'd have to start including the time we spent logging activities in the activity log each day!


At May 22, 2007 7:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh my goodness I thought I was the only other nerd who did that! I used to keep a sheet of paper on the counter with the date and each time the kids wet/pooped, ate, slept all that jazz. It really helped me notice when they were going through growth spurts (i.e. napping longer, nursing more) I think it's a very helpful resource to have to keep you in tune with the baby. A lot of nurseries also do the same as far as feeding/wet schedules go. I think it's a pretty smart idea and I commend you for it.


Post a Comment

<< Home