Thursday, 22 September 2016

The One In Which I Complain About Lack Of Sleep


Sleep, oh beautiful sleep. How I love thee. Once I had such lovely dreams, now I just day dream of sleep. 

It’s been a tough couple of weeks because Little hasn’t been sleeping very well. At best we are getting wake ups every three hours. She won’t settle for anything other than a feed. And then she feeds for ages and ages.

It could be she’s poorly.
It could be teething.
It could be a developmental leap.
It could be the weather.
It could be because I accidentally trod on a snail.
A tired mother with a sleeping baby lying on her
Exhausted

It’s all part of being a parent isn’t it? Even those lucky enough to have a “good sleeper” have bad nights every so often. When those bad nights start to add up, I start to fall apart.

I have the luxury of not needing to function very highly at the moment. Being on maternity leave means I don’t need to have too many sophisticated adult conversations (by which I mean a conversation which requires my brain to be functioning, not an “adult” themed conversation; I always manage to talk smut). When I write blog posts I can reread them later to try and prevent any glaringly obvious stupidity. My partner has to get up, go to work and make important decisions. A mistake from him could cost millions. My lapses in memory lead to cold tea and burnt toast. My decisions tend to be about clothing, food and whether to stay at home or yawn at people at a baby group.

When I'm really tired I get cranky. It's not nice for anyone. My temper is short and I shout for irritations which would normally be tolerated. I also swear *a lot*. I'm not a sweary person normally, but in the early hours of the morning after another night with frequent disruptions my use is prolific. Roughly half the words each sentence as I attempt to communicate with my partner are profanities. I've even said "bloody hell" and "bugger" in my older daughter’s company. Give me another few days with this sleep deprivation and I'm in danger of saying worse. I try my best. I can usually say something calmly once (even if there are additional swear words) but if I have to repeat myself I lose the thin level of control and snap. 

Little is normally an ok sleeper. The last few months she's been waking up a couple of times a night, but I've been coping. She would feed them go back to sleep. It's not required much effort from me and I’ve got enough sleep overall.

The last week and a half her sleep keeps getting worse. She is waking more often and won't resettle (with or without boob). It started when she suddenly got a bad cold and one night couldn't breathe properly, but even on the nights she can breathe easier she is waking every couple of hours and spending periods of time wide awake. She's also waking up for the day before 5am.
A baby looking up in the her cot wide awake
You are cute, but you are meant to be asleep

This I find so much harder to cope with. Wake up, stick on boob, return to cot is doable. It doesn't require me getting out of bed and I barely need to be awake. The night time parties and the crying that will only be stopped by an excessively long feed is draining. Worse still is the crying which won't stop with milk or rocking or patting or pleading or praying or sacrificing stuffed bunny rabbits (I jest).

My eyelids are heavy. My fingers barely managing to lift off the keyboard long enough to type words. I am reaching my limit. I am a sleeper. I have always loved sleep, always needed more than other people. I know I will sleep again soon, but for now sleep is my new obsession. I dream of sleep.
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2 comments

  1. Sending solidarity, our nights aren't quite as bad as yours but 6 months of not-great nights (with the odd awful one thrown in) are really taking their toll now. I also seem to need more sleep than others so I feel wrecked. Here's hoping we both get more sleep soon!

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    1. Thank you, one day we will catch up on our sleep. I hope

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