October 5, 2007

Sleep Problems Redux

[Edited to add: Go congratulate Jen at Never Melts--she had her little baby boy!]

I took my coffee this morning like medicine. I hovered near the pot as it brewed--waiting, waiting. I drank it too hot and too fast.

We're having Sleep Issues again. You know what that's like. "IT WILL NEVER END! IT WILL ALWAYS BE THIS WAY!!" Right now it's Elizabeth and Henry, both. Elizabeth wakes, cries out for 5 seconds, then goes back to sleep--ten times per night. Then sometimes it's more crying, and we have to make the call: go in? or hope she goes back to sleep? She won't go back to sleep if we go in, unless we bring her to our bed, and then she'll toss and turn and I won't be able to sleep. Last night she was shrieking so frantically, we brought her in with us. That was around midnight, and I knew the night was going to be downhill from there. I woke up this morning with her face about an inch from mine, her little eyes peering perkily into mine. I could hardly see her past the undereye baggage.

Henry is waking twice a night or more, not the same times so I'm not adjusting to it the way I could when he consistently woke at, say, 1:30 and at 4:00. He's SCREAMING and raging, starving. He nurses restlessly, thrashing. Is he teething? gassy? I change his diaper and he yells so loud he wakes Elizabeth on another floor of the house. He goes back to sleep. I go back to sleep. And Elizabeth cries out.

And of course the coffee I'm drinking to make ME feel better could be making HENRY worse. And of course bringing Elizabeth into our room when she cries could be making HER worse. Isn't it nice to be plagued with self-doubt EVERY SINGLE MINUTE?? Become a mother and enjoy the adventure!

36 comments:

Tessie said...

I like to think of your "one twin sleeps okay, the other not so much" situation as validation for my "it's not me, it's THEM" sleep theory. I mean, they are TWINS! And they sleep so DIFFERENTLY! This is practically a scientific study!

Jen4 @ Amazing Trips said...

Damn, I wish I liked the taste of coffee. I could REALLY use the pick me up. At our house, Carolyn and Elizabeth are sick with colds and were up coughing much of the night. William fell out of his toddler bed and was crying from the floor at 4 AM. Our Henry was awake every two hours, after I fell asleep at midnight (way too late!!), eating and cooing.

I know that this will pass, for you and me. In the meantime, it's best to take a nap
when they do (and drink coffee).

Jess said...

This is why kids are cute--otherwise, their parents would commit infanticide due to lack of sleep. It's self-preservation. I'll be crossing my fingers that this phase passes soon, for both of them.

Shannon said...

Yes, yes, yes.

We have two kids. Both sleep like crap. I also hovered over the coffee pot this morning.

Do you think either of us have a spitting chance at napping ever again? Probably not.

More coffee!

Chraycee said...

My 4 month old (tomorrow)Jillian is waking every 2 hours most nights....and she cannot seem to get to sleep peacefully at all....ever :( She was diagnosed with GERD and is on baby Zantac - one of the side effects is insomnia, another is drowsiness. So I'm guessing it's related, she's tired but can't sleep - and thus so am I. Last night I did the really horrible scary bad parent thing and put her down on her tummy - it was the only thing that eventually worked, but she woke when I tried to gently roll her to her side, so after much rocking and walking and swaying, back on her tummy she went and a total of 2.5 hours after trying to roll her to her side,she was sleeping again. This time I did't try rolling her over again :( So, I'm out here with ya girl.

Sara said...

We have the same thing with Cait who is about the same age as Elizabeth---she cries out and we ignore her. She cries some more and still we ignore. When she starts shrieking, I go to get her because she does share a room with her brother---the thing is she is never awake when she's doing this. Anyway, it happens almost every night.

I can't even imagine what it's like with 2 of them waking at different times.

I feel for you....hope it gets better soon!

bananafana said...

fingers crossed it passes quickly. we tend to just get used to O sleeping in time for him stop sleeping and make it even worse then if he had just slept like crap all along. sleep deprivation is the most awful thing in the world (besides mastitis . . . why am I having another baby?)

nikki said...

I'm sorry the sleep thing is sucking right now. At my house we are battling Operation:Stop the Whining. I think my ears are about ready to vacate my body in retaliation.

Erin said...

You know what I tell myself every time the baby starts waking more at night? I say it's a growth spurt. I have no idea if that's even remotely accurate but I don't care. Growth spurt means I can limit the self-doubt. Nothing I can do! The kid: he's growing! Hope their growth spurts even out STAT.

rebcram said...

Lordy. That is one thing I'm not looking forward to in having more than one child... and imagine, I'm only going to have TWO! I think all you can do is keep mainlining the coffee and know that it will pass. It seems like everything kids do is temporary in some way.

Jess said...

I think they form a group huddle before going to bed and discuss the no sleep strategy, otherwise how could it be so well executed? My oldest was up from 3-430am last night. My youngest got up at five. (Part of their strategy was waiting until dad went out of town to execute--thanks for that.) It's them.

Marie Green said...

WE ARE HAVING SLEEP ISSUES TOO! I just posted about it, and I swear I didn't read yours first.

Ahh, I have to say that if feel... good? I'm not sure "good" is the right way to say it- when someone else is having sleep trouble too.

I recommend frosting. Spoonful after spoonful. Makes the night crazies go away, at least a little.

And I'm so sorry. And I hear you. I hear you loud and clear.

Marie Green said...

Oh, and I agree with Erin. I always blame a growth spurt too- for the same reasons she does- it's not my problem! They are growing!

When an older child wakes, I blame their "needs". They must need me right now! If I resist the need, they will only become MORE NEEDY!

Both scenerios takes the self-doubt down a few notches. But it's never gone- I think it's our Motherhood Shadow.

Woman with a Hatchet said...

I'm so sorry, Swistle. I'm still looking for the add-on Pause feature, myself.

If only....

Banana said...

I laughed outloud at "I could barely see her past the undereye baggage" hahahaha

Artemisia said...

I hope this passes soon, Swistle! Hang in there!

g~ said...

Chraycee, both of my kids had (and still have--unfortunately) GERD. Zantac didn't work. My dr told me that I *should* put them on their stomachs because when they sleep on their backs, the reflux hurts worse. Also, a paci helps. Just telling you what my dr said--not making the dreaded "sleep on stomach" suggestion, just telling you what worked for me. But then again, my children regularly eat handfuls of sand and I don't really care, so I am prob not your best bet for advice.
Swistle...maybe the change in seasons? My kids usually have sleep issues during seasonal changes. Or night terrors--my friend's son had those for a long time before they figured it out. Or sleep terrors brought about by seasonal changes...don't you just love that the reason could be one of a *million* things? Gah. Parenting.

bubandpie said...

You know what that's like. "IT WILL NEVER END! IT WILL ALWAYS BE THIS WAY!!"

See, this is why I blog. Because it is like that - but I don't think I really realized that it's like that for all of us.

Kelsey said...

Yes, sleep issues are a PITA. Harper seems to go through stretches. She has had night terrors, which more regular napping has seemed to help. It is so frustrating not to know why your children are torturing you in such an evil manner. I am sending lots of positive sleep-thinking your way. May everyone nap at the same time soon!

Jess in Nebraska said...

Oh man, I am so sorry - I need sleep more than I need all other necessities, including oxygen, I think...There is nothing like the feeling of running on nothing but fumes. But like many others have mentioned, this too shall pass....and I'm sure you know that already, however when you're delirious from minimal sleep - sometimes it's helpful to hear that over and over again (until it does pass!) I mean, hey look at it this way, it could be worse your MIL could be coming this afternoon instead of in a couple of weeks from now.....(ha)
Hope you have a good (sleep-filled) weekend.

Stacie said...

Ugg. I'm sorry. Truly sorry.

I haven't read all the other comments yet, so someone has surely already said this, but if you are still nursing at all, it may be the coffee. When I (*sob*) cut out the bulk of my caffinated beverage intake the sleeping did get a little better.

Mimi said...

Yikes. I always think that too, whenever something spectacularly sucky is happening... it's going to be like this FOREVER! Fortunately, it never is. Hang in there.

Jen said...

Hysterical.

What IS it with nights lately? Almost everyone I know is having trouble getting their kids to sleep through the night. My kids are included in this! Is it national teething/don't stay asleep/keep your parents up all night month?

Jen said...

The baggage. That part was the hysterical part. Not the part about you not getting any sleep. Must go drink Diet Dr Pepper to wake up, or perhaps re-read my comments before I post them.

Katie said...

Okay. This is the absolute worst part of parenting, in my opinion. It just SUCKS when you feel so sleep deprived and nothing you can do seems to make things better.

It will pass. It will get better. It will suck in the meantime. God it totally sucks.

I think you should have your MIL sleep in the same room with both of them.

AndreAnna said...

Why is it that no matter what we do, we always think "well what if I did it this way? what if this way would be better? what if it was bad for her that I did this? What if I'm scarring my child? what if she'll never had friends because of me?" ARGH! It's maddening.

Have you tried b-12 supplements daily? They can give you some great energy without the caffeine. Just a thought.

I know you can hear me... said...

Oh what a bummer! My fingers are crossed that it's a short lived pattern...

Shelly Overlook said...

Where's that freaking EASY button when you need it?

Mommy Daisy said...

Wow, that makes me wonder about wanting another baby. I wonder if the baby will be a crappy sleeper and keep my son awake. But, you just never know. Fortunately my son *usually* sleeps well. Actually he's having a hard time falling asleep tonight. Sucks! I'm getting tired of it. I think tonights bad sleep directly correlates to my hubby being away. Grr.

Nowheymama said...

Again, this makes me not look forward to those early months with #3. How are we going to do it?!

Katie - HA!

the new girl said...

See? I look at you with your experience in mothering and think that you must feel so confident in things like this.

My middle of the night insane craziness with one small girl shakes my confidence more than anything. So, I take equal parts reassurance and spine-tingling fear from a post like this.

But you so perfectly (and with such humor) describe the night-time vs. daytime mentality. It's all CAPS at night, baby. ALL CAPS.

Omaha Mama said...

Oh boy. I feel for you. I was up with my 18-month old from 12:30-3 last night. And was just thinking how badly I need coffee. At 2:00 he actually stopped crying when I finally just let him down to play. That's never happened before and was horrible! So yeah, sleep issue suck!

I hope you get a nap!

Jennifer aka Binky Bitch said...

I. Hear. You. It's a conspiracy. The children use sleep as their weapon.

Farrell said...

My house is nearly impossible to sleep in. Between the dog chewing her bone and sitting on my legs, the cat scratching at the mirror, and my daughter waking at midnight or 5am refusing to go back to sleep, wanting juice but not wanting it no not in that cup! in the princess cup! No with a straw! No straw! it's fun times. I feel your pain.

MeganZ said...

I'm so sorry! We've been going through something similar for what seems like months now. Seems like? It has been months.

Hang in there...

Stephanie said...

Firt of all, yummy breakfast. Definitely jealous after eating plain cheerios! You did a great job with that closet. I hate doing projects like that, so kuddos to you!