Great Sleep? Try again...

Posted by Lindsey Costard on Thursday, February 14, 2013.

First of all, against my best efforts to NOT turn this into a mom blog, it seems as though we're going in that direction... although I will continue to throw dashes of non-baby related material, it's kind of LITERALLY my whole entire life right now.


Ahh sweet sleep.

#1 thing I was not prepared for to the full degree I needed to be. Lack of sleep.

I compare my cute little sweetie pie baby to an angry terrorist who has taken me hostage and tortures me with lack of sleep until I break. Anyone who has a new baby can relate. Kudos to all the working parents out there too because...YOU DON'T SLEEP. Yeah, yeah, everyone says that but how little do you actually sleep?

Pre-baby we've all had those long, essay writing/exam studying/partying for a few days nights. But after about, let's say, 3 days you usually get to sleep a BIG ol' sleep. Not with the baby! Those sleepless nights (where you are waking up EVERY 1-3 hours to feed and change the crying baby) drag on for monnnnnths.

You literally feel like you are being tortured. Ro and I made a mutual decision that all things said during the middle of the night must be forgotten in the morning as they are all screamed said out of pure exhaustion and, frankly, delusion. 

Then, just when you think things are looking up (as we did - started sleeping stretches of 5 or 6 hours!) everything goes back to the beginning for no apparent reason. It took us 2 hours to put Stella to sleep last night! We did the whole bath/massage/book/snack routine and by 9:42pm she was happily fluttering her eyelids as I rocked and shushed her to Slubersville.

But the second I put her down she opened her big, dumb, beautiful eyes... which was funny because I could see her opening her eyes as big as they would go, moving her head around in the dark like a little bird. Then the crying started. So I picked her up and walked around with her some more... still loving and patient! But again, the minute I put her down (and she was totally sleeping) her eyelids flash open.

Fast forward two hours.  Not so loving any patient anymore. Angry and frustrated. We have been taking turns trying to settle her down and finally succeed. It's almost a fight of us against her and it's 50/50 on who will win.

Now, I'm reading this book called The Happiest Baby Guide to Great Sleep which I think is confusing me. There are so many rules about how to train your baby to sleep. The single concept I find the most frustrating is that if your baby is very fussy and hard to put to sleep it could be because: a) bedtime is too early; b) bedtime is too late; c)something is bothering her; d)something else that you need to figure out.

Uh... last I checked I was a mother and not a baby psychic. How am I supposed to know what her 'natural' bedtime is??? And clearly something is bothering her... why the hell do you think I bought this book?? I need answers!

But I suppose that's one of the biggest parenting secrets... there are no answers. It took us two hours to put Stella to sleep last night and then she woke up about 3 hours later and wouldn't fall back asleep until I finally brought her into bed with me and let her suckle all night on my (now horribly sore) nipples. True story. Who knows what bug crawled into bed with her last night... My only hope is that it stays the hell out tonight!

2 Responses to Great Sleep? Try again...

  1. Anonymous

    You know what I love about your "mommy" posts? I've never seen anyone be so honest about motherhood in my entire life. I absolutely love your take on it. It's refreshing because people tend to make you think you should love motherhood unconditionally and never ever ever complain about it. I find that hard to believe. I love babies, and want to have my own someday, but they are tiring.
    Anyways, I'm no mom, but I've taken care of a few babies in my life, so I'll just say it: have you tried letting her cry for a few minutes? Like, if you put her down when she's clearly sleeping, and she opens her eyes and starts crying right away, maybe just let her cry and calm herself down. If there's really nothing wrong with her, as you seem to believe, she'll eventually stop crying. I mean, it'll hurt your ears, but it may be worth it in the end. Maybe it's the obvious, and you've already tried it, but I thought I'd say it anyway. It's worked for me and the babies I needed to sooth to sleep.

  2. Lindsey Costard

    Hey Samia! Thanks for saying that... I guess I wished I had read more real accounts of parenting too before having Stella... I do hope it still comes across that I love her like crazy, she is awesome! But she also sucks sometimes haha... like, just her personality. Oh god that sounds bad too. Well anyway. <3

    While your suggestion is perfectly logical, it is impossible in our case because we share a room together. Letting her cry it out means I will also have to cry it out and Im not into that... I do think she may have just been sick this week and that was bothering her breathing... so maybe this detective has solved the crime. I'm not sure. Let's see what happens next week.... :)

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