Living Dead (Bug)
You have no idea how much I appreciate all of the commiseration and advice on the sleeplessness. I have spent the last week or two trying to incorporate bits and pieces here and there, as time and my sanity would allow. The first step we took, though obvious and not at all traumatic in hindsight, was to supplement with formula during the night. One 3:00 a.m. last week, according to my sobbed instructions two hours earlier, Jeff got up with her for the first feeding, took her into the other room and gave her four ounces of formula. She cried the whole time, but she drank it. I covered my ears and tried not to feel like I was shirking my responsibility (I am so aware that this is not the case, but in the middle of the sleepless night when I'm near-hallucinatory and in tears, I will feel bitterly and personally responsible for everything from the dry rot in our kitchen wall to the global rise in ocean temperatures). Two hours later, she woke again and demanded more. Breasts exploding, I fed her. Two hours later, she was awake and making piteous little mewling sounds. I whimpered in response, then Jeff took her away and I found them a short while later asleep on the couch, an assortment of cushions pushed against the side in case she launched herself off the edge. (She did this, on my watch, just the other day. It is a low couch and there's an area rug beneath it, but it scared the everloving crap out of me nonetheless.) She looked like an angel, one thin ray of light, cleverly skirting the edge of the curtain, illuminating her wee face like an epiphany.
Long story short, later that day I suddenly got a lot more milk when I pumped, and not just at the first session. It was like that one missed feeding was all I needed to replenish the reservoir. There is now a sufficiency of breastmilk lining the door of our freezer, ready for Jeff to use in the night when I just can't deal. So no need for more formula for now, though we have it on hand just in case.
At the last feeding before bed each night, we are giving her the greyish glop that Farmer Joe's would have us believe is an organic rice cereal but I think is actually sawdust, Elmer's glue and a small quantity of the nutritious aged ash from Mt. Saint Helens. It dries like concrete in the corners of her mouth. She is not amused by it, except when rubbing it on her favorite plush toys, but we persist.
So, I've gained an hour here and an hour there, with Jeff losing hours in equal measure. Olivia is growing in leaps and bounds, and I have resigned myself to the fact that there's nothing I can do about it--she just needs to eat at two-hour intervals throughout both the day and night, and I can't accommodate. It's just the way it is.
There's something that does still get to me about it, though: feeding her in the night when she cried was the one thing I--and only I--could do well, up to this point. Now, in addition to being her favorite playmate/diaper-changer/Bjorn-toter, Jeff is also her nighttime comfort.
Oh, well. He's my nighttime comfort as well, so how can I begrudge her?
On a totally separate topic: Exactly how long till I can expect some tiny shred of my libido to return? I am as Saharan as a barren can be. Ouch.