Well, it took nearly 6 months but Ryan finally broke me. Last night and early this morning I had my first real sleep deprived sob-fest of his life. Prior to this a tear has been shed here or there over my loss of sleep, but nothing like the snot dripping, body racking, cry as though I've lost everything dear to me kind of sobbing of last night. Please tell me I'm not the only one who does that when they've been pushed past the point of exhaustion.
The good news is that I'm definitely maturing as a mother. With Tyler I used to cry like that weekly! (Now you know why there is a gap of almost 4 years between the two boys.)
I wonder if Ryan remembers the time just a few short months ago when he would consistently sleep from 9 pm to 5 am. That was a glorious time! I've pondered and speculated on what could have caused the serious sleep regression that he has undergone, and these are my top four theories. Feel free to cast your vote for the one you think most likely.
1. His considerate nature is keeping him up at night. His good looks, mellow personality, charming smile, kissable cheeks, and fat fat thighs make him too near perfection. Therefore, so as not to shame the other babies of the world, he has elected to be a crappy nighttime sleeper. After all, he can't do anything about all that other stuff.
2. It's my fault. I got cocky a few months ago when I boldly declared to a room full of women the morning after he slept from 9 pm to 7 am, "My baby SLEPT THROUGH THE NIGHT!" And now I am being humbled.
3. I am such an awesome mother that he can't bear to go a long time without seeing me or hearing my voice. Perhaps I'm learning that being too awesome is a curse.
4. He's a baby. It's what babies do. I can't take credit or blame for this, just like a mother of a baby who sleeps through the night at 5 days old can't take credit for that. (Though some of them definitely try to!)
My lack of sleep is definitely a problem, but even more than that are the side effects that come from getting no sleep. Nothing gets done. Dinner never gets made. Dishes pile up. The carpet hasn't been vacuumed since who knows when. I just spilled rice krispies on the counter, they'll probably be there until next week. I lay on the ground all the day long letting my body be used as a trampoline or jungle gym. I'm not shedding the baby weight like I should/could. And my brain feels as though it's been shut off. My thought processes are sluggish and connections are missed. The synapses of my brain used to fire off at a rapidity rate similar to a machine gun in the midst of a battlefield. Now it feels more akin to a lone man in a firing range with a single shot rifle.
Last night, during the 20 minutes that I was asleep, I had a dream that I had a page full of subtraction problems that I needed to solve. It was hard stuff like,
But in my dream I could not figure out how to solve it. I knew I had to line up the decimal points, but I wasn't sure if I was supposed to start solving it from the right or the left. Even now I'm only 68% certain that I start at the right. But the other 42% just isn't sure.
This all may seem contradictory to the post before this one, but it's not. It's all part of the motherhood gig and I still wouldn't trade it. But someday, I would like to sleep again.
I'm not sharing this in hopes of receiving sympathy, advice, or even words of encouragement. I know all too well how quickly this stage passes and I remind myself of that nightly. What I need from you is company. Misery loves it, after all. Most of you reading this are mothers, so share with me your tales of sleep deprivation. Make me laugh--tell me something stupid you did when you were tired. If you can't do that, make me feel sorry for you--I'm tired of feeling sorry for myself. And if you can't do that then I suppose a word of encouragement wouldn't hurt. And if you can't do that, then I hope you've at least been able to find something amusing in my situation, as I have tried to do.