Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Sleep...of Lack There Of

When the twins were newly home from the NICU we went through a pretty rough patch of sleepless nights. At that time there were a lot of factors that played in to this, one of which being the space that wasn't quiet their own "room". Our bathroom was practically IN their room and well when Daddy came home from work late at night (or had to get up for work super early) inadvertently they'd wake. They also would often actually give me a run for my money when it would come to just getting them down to sleep at the beginning of the night. I tried a lot of different things to make it better. Keep in mind I also had one baby tied to a feeding pump all night too, which was a challenge in itself.

I remember being so torn because as I sat and rocked Blake she might cry out yet the power cord and the tubing wouldn't reach to the rocker so I could rock them both at once. Or I'd be rocking her and Blake would wake up. (It's actually quiet challenging trying to get one baby asleep while the other screams their head off. Add to that that most nights I was flying solo.) And I had these big dreams of rocking babies to sleep every night while we cuddled close as they drank their bedtime bottle. It was nothing like I envisioned at all.

Oh how I remember these late night parties that Blake used to have every night at midnight. He'd babble and coo and smile for what seemed like hours. As long as he wasn't in his crib. Then he'd scream.

In the end we decided to sleep train, in a very relaxed way. It worked after just a few nights, and we never looked back. Since then we've moved (twice but who's counting), and even those first few nights in a new place did not make a darn bit of difference. Heck they even slept in hotels like it was their home! During those early days we had bought a sound machine which helped them sleep through the night, and when it broke or someone forgot to turn it on they didn't notice.

And then... we transitioned to toddler beds. Aside from a few night terrors up until this point at almost 2.5 years old, they literally slept through the night and willingly went to bed/nap. Now all bets were off. Since the toddler bed transition, I'd say that 3 out of 7 nights a week we end up with someone in our bed, usually Addison. We've tried being firm, putting her back in her bed over and over, rocking, cuddles, massages, offering water, anything else we think of at 2 am. Sometimes it works, other times she'll sleep with us for a bit and then we can get her back in her bed, and then sometimes, she stays in our bed until it's time to wake up.

It's in those moments when she's laying cuddled flush against me, I am sweating bullets, and she kicks me in her sleep again; that I am reminded that there once was a time when she didn't want to be held. Or when Blake is making this noise he makes when he sleeps (sounds like "round and round and round" with his fingers in his mouth) and I cannot sleep, I remember all the nights he slept in the hospital "alone". And well - I am ok with it. Because ya know what? In the end there will one day be a day when they won't want to cuddle anymore. And for each night of sleeplessness, there are mornings filled with footsteps down the hall and an excited "Good Morning Mommy" followed by cuddles and a cartoon or two. It's worth it.But boy oh boy do I miss consistent sleep.

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