…SERIOUSLY?! I’m starting to, for the first time in my life, doubt that this saying is true!
We have had a week of weeks. After Ethan recovering from his ear infection and inflamed tonsils, we thought things would get better on the sleep front as we had a few very rough nights last week, but we were so wrong. The sleeping’s just gone worse 😦 This week has honestly been one of the worst since he’s been born.
I know I’ve gone on and on, time and time again about lack of sleeping and Ethan not sleeping well and then it was teething and he’s been sick once or twice which always makes the sleeping worse but in general, Ethan really is not all too bad on the sleep front. Yes, he’s going on 14months soon and he’s still not sleeping through the night but I know tons of kids (ok, maybe just a few, like one or two!) at his age and older who aren’t sleeping through the night yet, so I’ve always felt like there’s hope and that this stage will pass eventually.
Roll on this last week (last night included). Generally, Ethan has two naps during the day ranging from half an hour to two hours at a time. Recently, there have been days when he’s only had one long nap and our nanny and I discussed this the other day both agreeing that Ethan’s getting bigger and his “routine” will obviously change and perhaps one nap is now sufficient for him but we’re still letting Ethan and his little body dictate when he wants to sleep rather than forcing him to stay awake for hours on end not wanting him to sleep. [Let me just add at this point that mister sleeps absolutely no better if we “stretch him” a bit longer, neither does he sleep any better when he’s in our bed – in fact, he’s slept in his own room in his cot since 3weeks old so, NO, we’re not going through a phase of trying to get him to sleep on his own, he’s already been doing it!!] The best sleep we’ve had since Ethan’s birth has been two wake-ups a night between 7pm and 6am, being 11pm and 5am for milk botties and he usually just drinks them and doses off to sleep. This past week, he’s gone to bed at his usual time of between 7 and 8pm. We had one good night this week where he only woke up at 4am, but other than that, the other nights have been pretty much the same…he goes to bed, then wakes up after 11pm at which stage he gets his night bottle (my plan is to wean him off this bottle but I just can’t pluck up the courage to do it now as I don’t want to do anything that will mess with his “routine”…although now that his routine is clearly out of the window, perhaps it is a good idea!!) then again at around midnight and then he just.won’t.go.back.to.bed!!!!! He’s wide awake, wanting to chat, play etc. Ethan has never done this before. Even as a baby and during teething when he’d wake up 7/8times a night, it was always for a few minutes – maximum half an hour to an hour – and he’d go back to bed. Now he’s up at midnight for about 3hours – if we take him to our bed, he doesn’t go back to sleep, he plays, chats, giggles and rolls around so that’s a FAIL. If I try rock him to bed (which I did last week when he was ill), he eventually sits up and starts smacking my face or putting his fingers in my mouth while I sing to him…FAIL. If I leave him in his cot and try and ignore him, he screams blue murder – I know some people would say I should do the “tough love” thing at this point because he’s old enough…personally, I think it’s too late now and the older he gets, the harder it obviously becomes but I’m not “pro” leaving my child to scream his lungs out. We did it for about 15minutes last night and I couldn’t – he never once let up, he just screeched louder and louder…EPIC FAIL! I know the nurse that we take Ethan to told us that 15minutes is way too short and that we should leave him for a few hours, even three, but I can’t do that! I’d rather be up for the three hours with him playing quietly than covering my head with a pillow and wishing him to stop screeching!!!!
Eventually, last night, I resorted to putting a duvet on his bedroom floor and laying next to his cot holding his hand to hopefully assure him that I’m there and make him feel more comfortable and at ease in his cot. That worked initially. He laid quietly (while my back was aching more and more from laying on the wooden floor!) and stayed down instead of pacing in the cot and trying to throw his teddy and dummy out, but then after a while, he started lifting my hand up trying to smack high fives with me – in that moment, I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry but for want of trying to be serious and make him realize that it’s bedtime, not play time, I pulled my hand away and put it next to me instead.
I eventually gave him his “morning bottle” just after 3am and he dosed off…and then woke up crying at 5am!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! SERIOUSLY – I couldn’t believe it. So here I am again today, feeling like I’ve slept for all of ten minutes 😦 And I’m sure Ethan’s just waking up now and will have a lovely morning nap in a few hours time. Oh well, the joys of motherhood.
I guess this too shall pass…