Ok, background #1. I usually shower Yu at 5.30 pm and make him sleep by 6 pm. But this is not always successful. Many times, either Yu would not sleep or he sleeps but wakes when his brothers come back about 6.30 pm, which means I'll rock and/or nurse him for quite a while until he sleeps, usually by 8 pm-ish. Sometimes, Mum helps to carry him while I discipline the playful brothers and have dinner myself. So sometimes I smell Mum's perfume on Yu.
Background #2. The past few evenings were crap. My memory goes as far back as Monday when Yu would not sleep until almost 10 pm. In fact, I was so tired that it was Sito who rocked him to sleep when he came back. Yesterday, he woke when his brothers came back but managed to drift off amid the din, though he woke again soon and didn't sleep until past 8 pm.
Background #3. Yu usually wakes every two hours, as I mentioned previously. But last night, when he was making noise after nursing at 2.30 am and I brought him to our bed, he slept all the way to 5.50 am. In fact, whenever he slept for four hours, it was always in our bed.
So, back to the revelation... I was holding a sleeping Yu in my arms, sitting in the kids' room. It was all dark as we switched off everything; all the kids and N were in the room, and Sito wasn't home yet. Kai and Yang were relatively quiet.
In the absence of light and sound, other senses were heightened. I was scratching my face and I smelled Mum's perfume on my hands. It's normal to smell it on Yu but to smell it on my hands means it rubbed off from Mum to Yu to me. And if it can rub off from Yu to me, it can rub off from Yu to his bedsheet, which doesn't carry my scent as it's too small for me to sleep there with him. And, Yu doesn't spit up milk much, at least not on his pyjamas coz we don't play much after his shower so there is no milk milk smell on him.
The above led to one big question: is he waking frequently coz he's missing my milk milk smell??
So when Yang fell asleep, I put Yu down on his bed, and took off my bra and put it next to his head, inside out!!! :p
Peacefully napping on me this afternoon - for two hours!
Just did some googling. Mummy scent can alert a baby or sooth a baby. I think Yang is the alerted type - even today, he would suddenly wake after I go in to check on them! - and Kai and Yu are the soothed type. Great if having my scent can sooth Yu to sleep longer! But this kind of foils my plan to wear my perfume for LNY - don't want the new scent to confuse Yu! Guess I shall have to smell like milk on 大年初一!
Update at 10.30 pm
Yu woke at 10 pm when Yang woke and cried. That was 2.5 hours since last feed. Need to monitor him more but main point of this update is that, I realised I have other smells too! Today, I used a sample cream on my belly instead of my usual postpartum ginger cream. When I opened up my top to nurse Yu just now, I could smell the cream! Argh, it doesn't dissipate quickly unlike the ginger cream!
Gotta be more careful about what I put on myself if I want to monitor Yu's sleep influencers - my apple cider vinegar toner has a very strong smell which dissipates very quickly; my serum smells like orange and dissipates more quickly than the vinegar; my other lotions are scentless; my lip balm smells like peppermint but it dissipates quickly; my shower gel smells strong but dissipates shortly after; my shampoo smell lingers but I tie my hair back when I'm with Yu. My clothes won't smell like detergent if I wear them two days after they're washed.
Update 26 Jan 2017 at 11.30 pm
After my update last night, Yu slept for three hours in his bed followed by another three in mine. I was so hopeful that my scent helped! But this evening, I put a wet bra - wet with milk leh - next to him and he woke in two hours. Super sian... Just what could buy me more continuous sleep??