Recently my 7 month old daughter, who was the “perfect” sleeper, has taken to awakening at 3 A.M. with a complete disregard for the schedule of others. My beautiful little angel (with perhaps a small set of horns emerging from her head) does not scream and cry; she does not wail or whine she is not upset or angry, generally. NO, instead she is happy and sweet as pie with no care that I should still be sleeping!!! She has just decided that 3 A.M. is now playtime, and whoever told her this was the case should most definitely be shot on sight.
I have tried every avenue of resolution, pabulum in her bottle, better routine, etc… The thing is she does not do this every night, just here and there. It’s like she gets it in her pretty little head that she feels like playing with mommy, and so the decision is made. If this is a glimpse into the future I don’t want any part of it because let me tell you what lack of sleep does to a mother;
When you are tired,
- Milk will end up in the cupboard, rather than the refrigerator.
- You will assume it is Monday and walk your older child all the way to school before realising that it is, in fact actually Sunday.
- You will then forget that it is Monday, and not get your child to school at all.
- You may even walk all the way to school without your child, on a Sunday, at 6 A.M.
- You will snap at, curse at, and effectively offend any, and everyone, who crosses your path.
- You will walk in circles day in and day out looking for one item, which item it is you are looking for though will remain a mystery.
- You will at some point leave the house with mismatched shoes, or another strange article of clothing.
- You will on at least one occasion get in the car and drive all the way to Walmart to get items you know you will forget to get tomorrow, only to realise that you have forgotten your wallet.
- You will probably at least once forget the groceries you just purchased at the register and drive all the way home with out them.
- You will clothe your baby without remembering to replace the soiled diaper you just removed.
- You will show up a day early, or a day late, for most doctors, school, and other appointments.
- You will forget where you parked the car and spend an hour walking the lot with a screaming child, only to realise the car is in the shop and you took a cab.
- You will at some point look at your child and envision and raging, fiery monster, that is simply here to drive you completely insane!
Being a single mother I am the only parent present, and I am the one who suffers from this sleep deprivation. Sleepless children = sleepless parents. It is not so much the “lack” of sleep; it is the broken sleep that kills me. If I just “didn’t” sleep I would not be nearly as stupid, I think. It is the broken intervals of sleep that makes my brain cry out “Good God woman, what are you doing to me?” I guess I should be thankful that it is just me losing the sleep because to be honest with you, at these moments of intense exhaustion, I could not be held responsible for my actions towards an unsympathetic partner. I can almost guarantee that I would do something extreme. It would probably go a bit like this;
The alarm would go off at 7:00a.m. And my loving, caring, partner, (who happened to get full nights sleep) would turn to me …..
Man: Good morning hunny. I love you.
Me: RARRRRR….*chop his head off.*
See what I mean? I just could not handle that kind of insensitive, heartless mockery at this point in my life! There would be police, and paperwork, and a BIG mess to clean up, when really all I want to do is climb into bed, so best that I suffer this lack of shut-eye alone and save myself the costly legal fees and prison time. My future husband (wherever he may be) can be grateful later, thinking that I am just a loving caring person, not a monster with two heads, a screaming baby, and a butcher knife.
But in all honesty I sometimes don’t mind having that “special” time with my daughter during the wee hours of the night; she is always so happy and talkative. I guess it is kinda nice, worth the effort though??? I’ll have to get back to you on that one, I seem to have misplaced the jug of milk again….