Friday, November 13, 2015

Sleep Chaos

Today is one of Ryan's days off and it made me think about how it's been lately. Ryan's been working 9:30pm to 6am. Right before he got on this schedule I had been so off I'd taken three weeks to rotate around the clock so I could get up in the morning with him... but I didn't account for Dreamer being crazy.

I don't know if you've ever heard of the wonder weeks, but it seems pretty accurate. During certain times in a baby's life they go through mental leaps that open them up to new potential, but during that transition they are irritable, clingy, and their sleep messes up. That's where we've been the last few weeks. Add into that she's teething molars, and you have a recipe for craziness.

If Dreamer had cooperated this month wouldn't have been so bad. I'd wake up as Ryan got home, probably he'd spend some time with me in the morning, sleep in the day, then wake up, go to work. Truthfully though, that's awful. I'm a miserable human being the first few hours I'm awake. Ryan is, in a very different way but still very much so, also a miserable person when he wakes up. So basically the only time we'd be getting together this month is the time when one or the other of us is groggy and unpleasant to be around.

Add in Dreamer's leap and it gets a whole lot worse. Now I'm trying to go to bed and lo and behold, Dreamer will not. Or she will, but it takes me longer to drift off (unless I'm totally sleep deprived, it takes over an hour for me to go to sleep) and JUST as I go to sleep, she springs up, crying and wanting me. Or we're both sleeping and the cats wake us up. Princess knows how to open my bedroom door and at least half a dozen times in the last month I've been woken up to cats running across my bed.

We have a latch on our door, but this presents another difficulty: Ryan waking me up when he gets home.

Oh! I forgot to mention, he's not really working 9:30 to 6! On the weekends he's working 8:30 to 5! So on Sunday and Monday mornings he's coming home at 5:30 in the morning!

So if I latch the door from the inside so that the cat can't open the door, guess who else can't without waking me up and making me get out of bed and unlatch the door to let him in?

Now, let's add in another complication: KC. Now, I'm not really complaining about her but while I've been sort of giving up and getting to bed later and later and stuff because my sleep is just screwed up and Ryan's on this schedule; well, she has classes everyday and being 22, she also goes out with her friends a lot. Which means some days she's home at 7:30pm, some days at 11pm, other days she's spending the night at friend's houses... and I don't know in advance. So sometimes Dreamer will be wanting to go to bed at 10pm, and I'm with her... but I have to stay up to let KC in, because we don't have an extra set of keys for her.

Now I miss my husband. So I keep trying to shift my schedule so we can spend more time together. Like on Monday let's say he gets home and stays up four hours, then goes to bed... just as I'm waking up. Well the next day I'll try to get up early, so I can catch him... and he is exhausted that day and goes to bed as soon as he gets home. Or I go to bed at midnight but don't fall asleep until 4:30am so when he comes home at 6:30 and wakes me up I want to rip his head off... Sigh...

I am still very much breastfeeding, meaning that in the middle of the night that's generally what Dreamer wants. Some nights I love this. Other nights my back hurts and I just want to lay down in a position that feels good for me and not the one that leaves my chest most accessible.
the face (and crazy hair) of a mom who needs some stability

Last night, Dreamer started crying at least four times and I had to nurse her. The first three were before I fell asleep. It was Ryan's night off so we all went to bed together at midnight, in an attempt to be on the same schedule during his mid week "weekend", and Ryan and Dreamer fell asleep right away. Like I said, I know I need at least an hour or so, so I had told Ryan let's all get up at 9am, hoping I'd be asleep at 1am. But just as I start to drift off at 1am, guess who starts crying? I nurse her back to sleep, start fading.. and again. And then a third time. This time she really cries and wakes up Ryan briefly too and we realize she has a wet diaper. So I change her and nurse her back to sleep. Finally around 4 or 4:30am, I fall asleep for the first time.

Then at some hour, I hear Ryan saying cheerfully to Dreamer, "You woke up at the same time as me, huh?"

I turn to him and murmur, "I didn't fall asleep until after four."

"I just didn't. Can you take her out to the living room, get me in a while?"

I'm assuming it's 9am, and I've had five hours, so hopefully they come back later.

Well they do come back later, apparently Dreamer is telling him she wants to nurse. I open my eyes and cuddle her and she nurses... Ryan is chattering away. I think it's been at least two hours since they woke up, so it's got to be 11am. I should probably get up. I pick up my phone.



"It's only 8:45???"

"Why are you yelling at me? Do you have to start off every day fighting with me?"

I take a deep breath. "I told you last night before we went to bed I wanted to get up at 9. So I assumed earlier it was nine when you got up and it was 11 now. But it's not even nine! I told you I didn't fall asleep until after 4 am. I obviously need more sleep!"

"We got up at 6:30."


"I don't know. But I fell asleep at midnight."

"Well you could have still just let me sleep, you knew I didn't fall asleep until four!"

"I just thought you'd want to hang out with me..."

Sigh. Well, guess what? I got up. I had tea. But after a couple hours, I went back to bed and fell asleep around 11 am, because I obviously needed more sleep...

"Come to bed with me," I pleaded, nursing Dreamer to a nap. "You only slept six and a half hours, you could have a nap too!"

"Eh, I'm hungry, I'm going to eat lunch."

"Fine, but then come to bed..."

Well I sleep for a few hours, wake up feeling refreshed and open my eyes to see Ryan laying across from me. I smile.

"You took a nap too?"

"No, I've been up for hours. I need a nap now and just came to bed..."


I made him get up and get coffee... but after an hour it was obvious he was really grumpy.

"Fine, go take a nap for an hour or two..."

"Well I'm not sleepy now. I just want some time by myself."

I take another deep breath. My husband is an introvert (I am NOT) and does need alone time... but what was the time when Dreamer and I were napping??

"Fine, see you in a bit."

As you can see this isn't going well. And feeling like a huge pressure always on the back of my mind is the awareness that in less than a month I'll be leaving him for months. I just want to spend so much time with him now because I know I'll miss him so much so soon.

Oh, did I mention to you that our hot water heater is out so I haven't had a warm shower in over a week?

Ryan's schedule changes monthly, so it will change soon... but we never know what it will change to more than three days in advance, so it could be better but might be worse. Dreamer is due to outgrow this leap in two days.. Praise the Lord. But obviously babies don't always follow books schedules, so we'll see. But she's followed leaps pretty closely in the past. Still, we have so much to accomplish before I leave, and my in-laws are pressuring us to spend more time with them because they won't see Dreamer for months... even though we have less time to spare, so that's not likely to happen, but it increases the stress levels of everyone. Yay. Also, I have a cold, which I am confident was brought on by my lack of sleep and constant stress lately. Dreamer's not just been wanting to nurse a lot at night, she's been throwing at least a half dozen tantrums a day. At least.

Still, overall, I love my baby and I love my husband I am growing increasinly excited about getting to go back to the US for the first time in three years very soon.

Praising God for:

-time with my husband, no matter how inconvienent.
- chocolate
- green tea
- Dreamer's giggles
- Dreamer's increasing language capability
- food delivery

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