Let’s Do a Midnight Feeding, Shall We?

by Katy McCaffrey on October 16, 2012


Please enjoy this post with a little baby sleep-enhancing white noise.  Maybe even dim your lights for the full effect.

It’s 12:03 am and the infant has woken for for his second of four nighttime feedings.  He’s hungry and wet and it would be great if this could all be managed in less than 20 minutes – the official amount of time a human can be awake but still easily go back to sleep.  Anything longer than that and a next-day crippling bout of insomnia could set in.  Start the clock.

Remove infant from bedside home-rigged crib/vibrating chair contraption that is the only thing he’ll sleep in.  To do this while maintaining a semi reclined position (another tactic employed to stay mostly asleep) requires considerable core strength.  Assume a low “boat pose,” twist to the left and lift the world’s most precious eleven pounds.  Don’t drop–DEAR GOD DONT DROP IT!  Lower the weight aaaaand release.

Position infant mouth and pointy end of boob together.  Wait, that’s infant eye.  Nope, now that’s infant ear.  Why is infant’s hand now blocking the mouth?  How did he get his hand out of the swaddle?  Why is it so damn dark in here?!  Where is he going?!

Abandon a laying down feeding for a sit up one – what it risks in energy expending it makes up for in time saved and less wiggly infant.  The key now is to not let the brain turn on.  Stay limp.  Let the mind go blank let the mind go blank let the mind go blank.

One eye drifts open to rest on the slumbering husband on the right.  He lays there blissfully uninterrupted. Here sucking away is the heir apparent and there snoring away is the sire.  Is his snoring getting louder?  How does anyone sleep through that?  If that shit is still going on when this business is over he’s getting an index finger jab to the rib cage – that always opens the airways!  Why doesn’t he ever have to do these nighttime feedings?!  Something to add to the “Superior Parent” list.  Wait, stop thinking!  Let the mind go blank let the mind go blank let the mind go blank.


There is an audible poop from the infant’s diaper area as he finishes eating.  This may be a three-to-four-wipes situation.  Not a problem as diapers and wipes were brilliantly prestashed earlier in the week under vibratey chair.  Changing can be done in the comfort of this big bed with little awakeness required.  Just reach und –there’s no diaper.  DAMNIT THERE’S NO DIAPER!  The husband is no doubt responsible for this. Probably used the last one and didn’t think to replace it.  Another thing to add to the list.  Wait, the husband never handles these nighttime feedings and diaper changes – can’t have it both ways.  Damn it again.

Out to the nursery with infant in tow.  It is excessively dark tonight.  Is there not even a moon out? Avoid dogs sleeping on floor.  Don’t risk turning on the light.  Remember Barbie fort built earlier this evening directly in front of door.  Light cuts into melatonin production.  No one is getting back to sleep if the light comes on. Walk to –DEAR GOD DON’T DROP IT!!!!  Note Halloween decoration in the way for walk back to bed.  Ugh, the toe stub has been happening since the dawn of human.  It is the great equalizer.  Consider getting slippers for just such occasions.

Unsnap lower half of footie pajamas.  Diaper removal. Legs uuuuup. 1, 2, 3 wipe.  Diaper application.  Kiss belly.  Snap lower half of footie pajamas.  Back to bed.

Husband is still sleeping.  Son of a –infant begins to cry.  No no.  Crying requires energy to resolve.  Crying at this stage is bad.  Crying must be headed off at the pass.  Only one thing to do.  Position infant mouth and pointy end off boob together.  Nope that’s infant eye…that’s infant ear…that’s…there it is.  Let the mind go blank let the mind go blank let the mind go blank.

Infant head whips back in the world’s most violent admission of sleep.  A little milk drips into the infant neck crevice unreachable in any other position and thus destined to stay they for days making a cheese like substance.  Two minutes left to get him reswaddled and back in bed.

One side of blanket Down and under.  Otherside of blanket over and up.  Crap, part of own blanket is caught in infant blanket.  Start over.  Running out of time.  Opt for quick swaddle method that is sure to fail in another two hours but is easy to accomplish now: down, up, down, up (the DUDU method).

Place child back in vibratey chair.  Note distinct lessening of vibration.  Have to put new batteries in first thing in the morning.  Are there batteries in the house?  The other kid needs a refill on asthma medicine so pick up batteries too.  Also low on shampoo and conditioner…maybe saline. DAMN IT, let the mind go blank let the mind go blank let the mind go blank.


Katy McCaffrey (Contributing Editor, Los Angeles)

Katy is a mother, a wife, and a TV producer, mostly in that order. Once she wrote some sarcastic things next to some pictures a guy took with her stolen iPhone. She was then semi-well known for three days afterwards. If You Must Know is what’s happened to her since then.

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