This is not the best time to be writing this. It is midnight. I haven’t been to sleep yet. When I do go to sleep I will be woken maybe twice more before 6:15am when my alarm will go off. Mckdaddy is snoring next to me. This is absolutely not the best time to be writing this. But here I am.
Sleep. It’s like a secret shame after a certain number of months. Six months, maybe? Or even earlier. Those who’s babies sleep through do not mention it because they don’t need to. Those of us who’s baby doesn’t sleep all night don’t mention it either. Probably, because we either feel we have failed in some way or more likely, are so bloody sick to death of people telling us how to fix it, that we just shut up and smile. Or maybe it’s a little of both.
This age is particularly tricky. Many people feel that at ten months I shouldn’t ‘indulge’ her by feeding or holding her when she’s trying to sleep. That she isn’t hungry and has simply fallen into bad habits and those two things are true, to a degree. However, she’s not at an age where I can reward her or reason with her and explain to her. She’s still working very much on instinct. The need to be close to a person, to be held. She hasn’t yet learnt to self soothe, she will eventually. I know this and I am not one for forcing the issue. On that note, I must just point out that I don’t think leaving her to cry for a bit would work. When she has been left, simply due to not having enough hands, she just cries and cries and cries and stops when I pick her up. It’s awful, the crying and I figure if you want a cuddle you should get one, especially when you are still a baby. If Mckdaddy wanted a cuddle, I wouldn’t say “No, it’s gone 7pm, you must learn to comfort yourself, I have washing to fold” So much of parenting is complicated into a ‘process’. A “put part a into slot b” approach. Follow the rules, pick a tribe, but in reality it doesn’t really work like that. We are all simply people trying to care for other people, in our own unique circumstances. Trying to tune out the ‘noise’ in order to hear our own instincts and more importantly to try and listen to the messages our baby is sending.
I think about the other two and inevitably compare. Nano slept like a dream from really early, although actually I may be remembering wrong. I see timehop posts that tell me there were periods of co-sleeping even with him. Mini Mck was a dreadful sleeper. Was he worse? I have no idea. I feel he was, but maybe that’s because we didn’t know what we were doing and didn’t give him what he needed enough. Is she worse? Or is she just a third child that should’ve been born a first child? I wear myself out trying to figure it out and it’s futile. What I should be doing is figuring out the best way for all of us to get enough sleep to function properly.
So, we quietly battle on. I get more and more tired as each week passes and wonder how much longer I can do this. It all makes me so grumpy, angry really. Angry at anyone getting more sleep than I am, so Mckdaddy gets the brunt of it, (see: snoring next to me comment) but there’s plenty of grumpiness available for the helpful comment makers, the people who’s babies sleep, in fact, EVERYONE IN THE WORLD. Then I get some early nights and Mckdaddy and I start to work as a team again. I pull myself together and realise, that of course I can keep doing it. What’s the alternative, after all.