The Great Coffee Caper

02 May The Great Coffee Caper

The sleep woes continue in the Wagner household, and Kris and I are still playing mad scientist, investigating every possible cause-and-effect related to this great mystery.

Peas still seem to induce sleep nicely, but I began to wonder what the long-term ramifications would be of only feeding your child one food for the rest of her life. It could get ugly. So we’re branching out–butternut squash, mango, yogurt. B is loving the variety, but the new foods don’t seem to have the same soporific effect.

So, I began looking at my diet, since she’s still breastfeeding, wondering if I could make some beneficial changes. When I wrote down what I consumed during a day, one thing stood out at me: my one-latte-a-day habit. Could it be that the caffeine was making its way into my milk and keeping our little one up at night?

Side note: While I was pregnant, I researched this extensively and found that most medical sources say up to 3 cups of coffee per day is okay for nursing moms. Espresso has less caffeine than brewed coffee, and I typically drink only two shots of espresso per day in the form of a latte, which has all that good milk fat and calcium in it too (or so I rationalize). Not to mention, a happy mommy equals a happy baby, and I am WAY HAPPY when I have my lattes.

Still, I’m willing to do almost anything for a good night’s sleep, and if giving up coffee is the key, then take away my mug. I decided to go 48 hours without caffeine to see what happens. Wednesday morning I sipped my last latte, and Thursday I skipped it entirely. On Wednesday afternoon, the bright sunshine was my energy drink and B and I strolled the neighborhood soaking it in. I felt great. Liberated.

The true test came Wednesday night: B slept horribly. But I figured it could take a while to get the caffeine out of my system, so I pressed on.

Thursday morning dawned cold and snowy, and I was more tired than ever. The temperature had dropped 40 degrees since Wednesday (gotta love Colorado!). And when Kris offered me a cup of brew, I just said no.

I won’t lie to you. Thursday was rough. I grabbed a decaf latte that afternoon, hoping the taste would at least energize me…but my body couldn’t be fooled. By 5:00 I was ticking down the minutes until bedtime. I had a headache (withdrawal?) and I even put B down 45 minutes early because I was dragging so much and she was fussy.

Thursday night: B was up again every 2-3 hours. At one point, she was screaming in pain, and I reached into her little mouth and massaged her gums and felt what I think is the beginning of a tooth breaking through.

This morning I confessed to Kris that I had been skipping coffee, and he laughed. “What would you do that for?!” He said I should continue to savor that one cup a day for my own sanity. And then he reminded me that there was a time around Christmas when I was drinking two lattes each day, and B was sleeping 9 hours in a row at night.

So much for that theory! And on to the next. Teething, incidentally, is a great catch-all excuse for any unpleasant baby behavior.

And, in a couple short months, we’ll begin introducing meats, and you can bet your PJs that i’ll be offering some pureed turkey. Tryptophan, here we come!

  • Jes
    Posted at 02:00h, 03 May Reply

    Oh! I am so happy Kris helped you come to your senses. Though, I do agree it was worth a try…anything for sleep! If it had been the solution, what a sad realization for the rest of us. Coffee shop playdate, here we come!

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