Without sleep you go crazy.
It’s hard to concentrate.
Hard to focus.
Hard not to get upset over the slightest comment.
It just makes life hard.
Depression slowly creeps in and all I want to do is sleep, just one night, that’s all I’m asking.
But my youngest, Mr 2, has decided that sleep is for the weak!
30min catnaps during the day, waking every 2hrs during the night.
He’s up crying wanting cuddles, wanting Mummy. Not Daddy, only Mummy!
I hit breaking point. While out to a family dinner and even in a noisy room I managed to fall asleep on the couch; I went for a swim (my new me time activity) and I didn’t want to go home because I knew that it was just going to be another night of crying and no sleep and the water just felt so good and calming. I know I got myself into the bad habit of feeding him to sleep but that’s because I tried everything else and there is only so much crying I could take.
I went to the doctor (because my maternal & child health nurse appointment was still a month away and I couldn’t wait that long) and we got a referral for sleep school. I’m one of the lucky ones because they got me in within a week!
Now, I sit here at Sleep School, listening to the other parents chat and somehow I feel alone. My baby is older than the others by a good 6 months. I start to question myself: Did I wait too long? Should I have come sooner? You know all those self doubt question ending with am I a bad Mum? I decided that I’m not and that we just exhausted all options before asking for help and at least I did finally ask for help. So, go me! I’m great! The other parents are all teachers, seemingly younger than me and they sound really pretentious when they are talking or maybe i’m just too tired to have empathy.
The staff are amazing, you can tell that they are there mainly to help the adult, because the kids are fine. I went in knowing logicly that it’s all a normal age and stage but I was starting to feel so down that I just needed that helping hand. Reassurance of what I was doing what right or if it needed a tweak and that there was nothing developmentally going on with him.
And that’s what they gave me. I just wish I could take her home to help me while I’m at home (that is an option and something that we might do if an improvement doesn’t come).
Sitting there in a darkish room, I remembered doing this for my older son, Mr 1, and thinking, why did I not try this at home. And I think it’s because he is different. His cry affects me so differently. When Mr 2 cries, I can’t concentrate on anything else, everything just gets really hard to focus but with Mr 1 I knew which cries of his that I could tune out and I could keep functioning.
The steps that they suggested for me and seem to be working so far, are:
- Read to him, while he is in the cot
- Patting the bed (not the child, because they wake up when you take your hands off them)
- Telling him how tired that he is (I know this sounds stupid but think about how you feel when someone tells you that you look tired, it makes you feel sleepy)
- Telling him to lie down and trying to get him to do it himself but every now and again helping him.
- Soft blanket/toy/ comfort item
It has started to improve and I have been keeping a diary of it… I just might post it, once I feel a little better…
If you feel like you need help or are feeling down here are some links of where to find help.
If your baby is having sleep trouble and want some help, speak to your doctor or maternal and child health nurse