This week has been nuts—even more than my norm. (Can you imagine?) And, sadly, I didn’t handle it as gracefully as I could have. To be fair, the lack of sleep and potty training is making me batty. My soon-to-be three-year-old just won’t sleep. What is going on? Is there a drug for this? (For either of us??) He’s been a bad sleeper his whole little life, but it’s been especially a struggle for the past three months. For a while I was Ferberizing him—you know, the Ferber method where you let him cry it out. Well, he shares a room with his big brother and his big brother needs to sleep to be present at school. When I was Ferberizing him, my stubborn little guy would scream and run out of the room over and over and over again until almost midnight. I would walk him back in, say he was a big boy and he needed to sleep on his own, put him back in bed, only to have him run out again. Needless to say, both William and I were going crazy. Eventually, I’d give in and lie down with him. Even then, it would take him an hour, maybe more, to actually fall asleep. He’d hug me and say, “I lub you mommy.” Often times, when we’re lying there, he’ll play with his animals, spin around like a top until his head is at the bottom of the bed or he’ll kick the wall … You get the idea. It’s maddening. Both William and I usually fall sleep before him. Typically, most nights I wake up at 3 or 4 a.m. with my body slammed into the small slat of the bottom bunk bed with his chubby arm up on my shoulder. I usually am still fully dressed and my teeth haven’t been brushed, my face not washed—I’m a complete mess. So I get up and start my day, not able to fall back to sleep after the five or so hours I did get. I’ve had a crick in my neck for a week over this due to the bunk bed slat business. I’m going CRAZY!
Twice this week I’ve actually hired a sitter in order to put the little guy down for me. Both times, I’ve returned at 10/10:30 p.m. and he’s STILL UP! I found myself standing over my adorable cherub dressed in footy pajamas. I’ll put my hands on my waist, put on a stern look and ask why he’s still up.
His reply: “I fraid I lose you mommy!”
What’s a sleep-deprived, crazy mom to do? Well, one morning this week, at 4 a.m. I broke down and called the ex in London. NOT my most graceful moment. (Ironically, my first post four weeks ago was about how sleep deprivation and stress can cause decision fatigue and cause a person to make bad decisions. See: “No Wonder I Can’t Decide What’s For Dinner”) Since he hasn’t been with his boys since July, and I’m about to have a nervous breakdown, I let him have it. Not cool. I have no idea how many times I used the F word. Seriously, this was not my most zen moment. But you know what? I apologized later in the morning for losing my cool and explained to him rationally the extent of my sleep-deprived state. And you know what else? He’s called the boys at least two times this week and is squeezing in a one day layover on his way from London to Australia on Sunday and a weekend visit on his way back the following week.
Hooray for small miracles!
I’m SO excited. If all goes well, this Sunday evening I’m going to enjoy the most luxurious bath I’ve ever had followed by a good nights rest—in my own bed!
I don’t think I’ve been this grateful for one day off in all my life.
- ADHD and Sleep (everydayhealth.com)
- Sleep deprivation has euphoric effects (time4sleep.co.uk)
- Sleep deprivation ‘leads to weight gain’ (time4sleep.co.uk)