I need sleep. Lately I've been asking myself how I was able to stay up and be entertaining until well past 3 AM. Every. Night. How did I function?
At the age of 13 months Ayla has decided that she no longer needs to sleep. Ever. I'll lay her down for her afternoon nap (hoping to catch a little afternoon nap of my own) and half an hour later she's standing up, rocking back and forth causing her crib to bang into the wall, and yelling, "MAAAAAAMAAAAAA!" Cute, right? It's not so cute if the night before she was put to bed at 8:30 PM, awake at 10 PM, put back to sleep, awake at 12 PM. Put back to sleep, awake by 1:30 AM... and this continues until the sun comes up and I have been up and out of bed up to 8 times. Yes, one night I was up with Ayla 8 times.
Solution? A vast google search has given me these things: Let her cry it out and It's just a phase, deal with it.
Crying it out. Something I have always heard about. Something that some parents can do. Me? Oh no. I cannot let my child "cry it out". Not because I feel bad for her, that's not it. It's because she will not. The longer I leave her the more upset she becomes. She screams louder and louder. She has tears and snot all over the place. Her voice gets hoarse. She bangs her crib against the wall, if the crib is away from the wall she bangs her head against the crib. For dramatic effect I am sure, afterall, she is Joseph's daughter. SO. When it's 3:15 AM and I am exhausted and I have not had a wink of sleep and I hear my child screaming and banging I lay there. I wait. I always thing to myself, "Maybe this one time she'll realize how tired she is and go back to sleep. After 25 minutes of screaming and banging it's louder than ever and I can hear my neighbors stirring next door. Oh yeah, did I mention that our walls are about as thick as tissue paper? I obviously am not going to be able to sleep through this tantrum, my neighbors are also losing sleep (I'm pretty lucky they haven't slashed my tires or something like that), but miraculously, Joseph is wistfully snoozing, not a care in the world. How? So up I get to save my neighbors and my own sanity and console a child who is shaking, has hicups from screaming, dry her tears, give her some warm water, lay her back down, stroke her hair for a while until her wide eyes start to close... I stare at her perfect little face and I feel guilty for the angry thoughts that fly through my head when I'm laying in bed listening to her scream. I get back in bed thinking to myself, "I really do have the sweetest baby." And then 4:35 AM rolls around and I hear that familiar siren which starts out low and quiet and slowly rises in pitch and volume..."wwwwaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!"
When Ayla was a teeny Tiny I used to be able to get her from her crib, move to the couch, and she would fall asleep on my chest where we could sleep very peacefully until the morning if this sort of thing happened. I had a bright idea to try that the other night and guess what happened? I laid on the couch, laid my girl on my chest, closed my eyes and... POP! The baby shot straight up. Giggling. It was pitch black and she was sitting on top of me cracking up. At what? I would love to know. She then climbed to the ground, found a nearby toy and I heard something along the lines of this, "da-da-da-wikiwikiwiki-beeeebeeee-gigglegigglegiggle-HEY!HEY!HEY!-MOOOOOOOMMMM!" We were there playing in the living room until 11:30 AM when the baby sitter showed up to give me a break and take Ayla to the mall. And yes, Ayla was wide awake and smiley and giggley the whole time. We will not be going to the couch anymore.
So the obvious thing that I need to do here is just deal with this phase.
Oh I need some sleep. I am not even able to function anymore. I have dark circles under my eyes. My eyeballs are bloodshot. Seriously. People probably think that I'm high because my eyeballs are so red.
Suggestions? I can feel my sanity slipping away one sleepless night at a time...
Luckily, even when it's too early for anyone to be happy I have this cute face to look at:
|Ignore the crappy cell phone quality!|