William turned 5 months old 9 days ago. As I look back to his previous update, SO much has changed.
During month 5 all of the following happened:
- William dropped his middle of the night feeding and is sleeping through a full 12 hours.
- His naps are still nice and long.
- He’s continued to put himself to sleep without any assistance and no pacifier.
- He dropped his swaddle completely and is arms free!
- He dropped down to 4 feedings.
- We also had to make the switch to bottles and formula instead of breastfeeding.
- And, he has pneumonia.
Needless to say, this post is 9 days late! LOL! I feel so good about where we are right now, though (aside from him still having pneumonia). Full update on all items below!
5 Month Old Schedule
We dropped William down to 4 feedings, instead of 5, shortly after switching him from breastfeeding, to formula and bottle feeding. This happened towards the end of his 5th month (about a week before turning 5 months old).
Prior the change he was on a 4 hour schedule, with 5 feedings.
Feeding Schedule For Most of Month 5
7 am wake and feed, 11 am feed, 3 pm feed, 6 pm feed, 7:20 feed and bed
9 am to 11 am, 1 pm to 3 pm, 5 pm to 6 pm, no nap after the 6 pm feed
This schedule was going great, however, he was less and less interested in the 6 pm feed.
I was contemplating dropping the feeding.
About the time I was contemplating dropping the feeding, we went in for a weight check on him.
In this update on his development at 4 months old, I discussed that his doctor noticed he hadn’t gained much weight. He wasn’t at all concerned, however.
Well, we followed up with a weight check, after a few weeks. Unfortunately, William had fallen off of the curve for weight completely.
All signs were pointing to him not getting enough food. After some investigation, we found out that I simply wasn’t producing enough milk. I discuss everything in this post: Breastfed Baby Not Gaining Weight.
Long story short, we made the switch to formula. It’s been almost 2 weeks now on formula, and I am so happy to report that William is growing like a weed!
In 11 days, he gained 20 ounces! That’s amazing! He’s catching up for lost time apparently.
Anyways, after switching to formula, and knowing full well that he was getting enough in ounces, he was still very much not interested in the 6 pm feeding. And so, we went ahead and dropped the feed.
4 hour, 4 Feed Schedule
7 am wake and feed, 11 am feed, 3 pm feed, 7:20 feed and bed
Normally, I’d have replaced the 6 pm feed with solid foods. Unfortunately, he is just not ready for solids, however.
See below for a printable version of this schedule and even more resources!
He was just transitioning to full formula, which was a huge change, and he now has pneumonia.
Not to mention…he’s still struggling to sit well and keep his head up, even while supported. His strength is visibly getting better now that he’s getting enough food, however.
9 am to 11 am, 1 pm to 3 pm, 5 pm to 6 pm- then up until the bedtime feed at 7:20 pm
This new schedule is going fantastic.
William is loving formula and doesn’t seem to miss breastfeeding one bit.
It was an emotional thing for me to stop, but I knew it was the right thing to do. I knew we didn’t need to waste time trying to get my supply up. Our son just needed to be fed.
We switched over to the formula that he’d been on when he was in the NICU. This formula is for premature babies and has 22 calories per ounce instead of the usual 20 that typical formula has.
We are using Enfamil Enfacare: Formula for Premature Babies.
I’m loving bottles now! I still get snuggles with him when I feed him. Feeds are MUCH less stressful. He was just never focused. I thought he was just distracted…but he was frustrated and not getting enough.
The only problem, is that he was acting full and happy. I had no idea!
Now that we are using bottles, however, it’s reassuring knowing how much he’s getting.
He eats 6 ounces 4 times a day. He’s pretty consistent. Occasionally, during the first morning feed, he likes 8 ounces, but typically he’s right at 6 ounces 4 times a day.
We love the Avent Naturals bottles. He’s comfortably using the size 1 nipple. I was surprised, since it’s the newborn one, but he drinks very well from it and even does so quickly! I have to try and pause him for a moment so he doesn’t drink too fast and spit up.
He’s still doing great with the 2 hour wake time.
He now grabs toys successfully every time. He can even switch hands, hold with both hands, etc.
His favorite toys, however, are loveys. He just loves stuffed animals. He kisses them and holds them, he talks to them and just gets a HUGE smile on his face!
He’s not doing much rolling at all now. If I put him on his belly, he just stays there and lays his head down when he’s had enough.
He was trying to roll from back to belly a couple of months ago, and he’s stopped trying. Neither of our kids have been big rollers!
He’s talking and LAUGHING. Oh my gosh the laughs are adorable. Good, real, all out laughs.
One of his favorite things is when I put an outfit on over his head. The time between me putting it over his head and pulling it down off of his face, is hilarious to him!
He cracks up, so I, of course, do it again!
He’s doing less thumb sucking while awake (thank goodness), and continuing to use his thumb for comfort when going to sleep. I’m loving it!
Naps are a dream right now.
He takes 3 naps.
His first morning nap is from 9-11. He sleeps the whole time and I usually have to wake him.
His next nap is from 1-3. Again, he sleeps the whole time. It’s about 50/50 if I have to wake him.
His last nap is from 5-6. It’s definitely a catnap. He varies from 30 minutes to the full hour. I wake him at 6 and don’t let him go any longer, and if he wakes early we just get him up. He still easily makes it to bedtime.
He puts himself to sleep with no assistance.
He was sleeping on his belly for naps, until he got pneumonia.
So, for the last week, I’ve been placing him in his sleep sack and on his back for naps. I just want his airway as open as possible right now!
Good news, is that he’s still sleeping great for naps!
A little bit into month 5, William was still waking in the middle of the night one time. All of the sudden, he was moving this feeding from 3:30am, to 2am, then 1:30am, etc.
The 4 month sleep regression seemed to be showing up.
I was determined to not let it happen long. After 3 nights we made a change.
He wasn’t eating well for his first morning feeding. I was still breastfeeding at that point.
I decided that the 4 month sleep regression, coupled with his light morning feed, we needed to go ahead and drop the middle of the night feeding.
He also wasn’t hungry in the middle of the night, he was just eating to eat. And I was feeding him, simply to just get everyone back to sleep.
So, we tried dropping it. I let him cry it out for one night. He cried for 20 minutes.
He never asked for the feeding again, and started sleeping 12 hours. I knew he’d been ready.
I then felt bad after finding out that he wasn’t getting enough food- but the middle of the night feeding was not gaining him any. Once we dropped it, he was much happier and better rested. He was eating better and doing great.
After switching to formula, his metabolism seemed to kick in. He had a 3 or 4 night stretch of waking and asking for food once in the middle of the night.
I fed him a couple of ounces and put him back to bed.
He then started sleeping through the night again. He’s super happy and doing very well.
Life With Two
Well, in this reflection of life with two, I have to report that being sick sucks. Hard core sucks.
Caroline probably brought a bug home from preschool. That turned into pneumonia for her. Then William got sick… turned into pneumonia for him as well.
Then I got sick.
It’s hard being mom to two sick kids and being sick yourself. It’s hard having to tote both kids into the weekend walk-in clinic to see their pediatrician when they don’t feel good.
There is no time to get yourself better. It is what it is, but this hasn’t been the most enjoyable couple of weeks!
The enjoyable parts are still just that- super amazing. Caroline was so excited to feed William a bottle for the first time.
She loves showing him toys and reading to him, and still loves her snuggles with him.
It’s amazing watching them grow together and love each other so much.
New This Month
Obviously we had so many big changes this month.
William is now on formula, and he’s using bottles.
He has to be on high calorie, preemie formula.
These toys aren’t new, but he’s just really enjoying them right now…
Here’s a look at our favorite products this month:
Our Favorite Products for Month 5:
5 Month Old Schedule:
- 7 am wake and feed
- 9 - 11 am nap
- 11 am wake and feed
- 1 - 3 pm nap
- 3 pm wake and feed
- 5 - 6 pm nap (sometimes shorter)
- 6 pm wake (NO FEED)
- 7:20 pm feed and bed
William made the switch from exclusive breastfeeding, to full formula this week.
As a result, I know how many ounces he's taking! He eats 6 ounces, 4 times a day. Occasionally, he takes 8 ounces in his first morning feeding.
His wake time is 2 hours.
His cycle length is 4 hours.
The cycle length is the time it takes us to complete one eat, wake, sleep cycle. He is doing fantastic on this 4 hour schedule, and I am loving it as well!
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