Sleep Deprivation

My son was one of these perfect babies that started sleeping through the night at 3 months old.  We would lay him down at 8 pm and we wouldn't hear a peep until 7am.  We were those parents that others hated.  We knew we were lucky.  We also knew that our days were numbered.


It has been two glorious years of uninterrupted sleep and now, out of nowhere, this kid is refusing to sleep.  I blame it all on the dreaded DST (daylight savings time) which threw our schedule right out the window.  Now, every morning at 5:30 he is up and ready to start his day and I am not dealing well!

Last week I snapped and completely lost my mind.  I blame it on being 8 months pregnant and exhausted.

Five a.m. rolled around and Nathan ran into our room demanding milk.  I woke up, gave him milk and took him back to his room.  This is where things went wrong - terribly wrong.

He wanted nothing to do with his bed and started screaming at the top of his lungs.  I tried to calmly explain to him that it was still bed time and that he needed to go back to sleep.  He was not having it.  He wanted the lights turned on and he wanted to play.  I went back to bed, hoping he would get the idea.

The only idea he got - follow mommy into her room and scream into her face until she wakes up and plays with me.  I put the covers over my head and tried my best to ignore it all.

He cried for at least a half hour, and then sweet silence.  I thought I had won and he had gone back to bed and so I went back to sleep. I woke up so proud of myself, patting myself on the back for my parenting success when I see a glow from the living room and some "talking" going on.

In fact, my son had never gone back to bed but had proceeded to walk into the living room and turn on the TV.  He couldn't turn on the cable box, but he was reading and playing by the light of the illuminated screen.  I truly felt like the worse mother in the world.

I walked over to him, his eyes still red and puffy from all of the crying, and gave him a big hug and kiss.  He then demanded milk and a banana.  Men!

So now, still completely sleep deprived I am at a loss about what to do.  Where did my sleeping child go, and how do I get him back?

Do you have problems with your toddlers sleeping through the night?


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17 comments:

Cookie's Mom said...

Barbara, baby and toddler sleep is one of the BIGGEST problems we can face as parents. I have a few ideas. Check my blog for 'sleep' and you'll find a few posts I wrote on the topic. With respect to the time change (I despise it), what we found works is this (for next time, or it might even help now). Adjust bed time and wake time by ten minutes each night over the course of six days until you've adjusted it one hour in the direction of the time change. I used to start it the week ahead of the time change so we'd be ready for it when it arrived.

With respect to waking up and not staying in his room, we 'trained' our son to only leave his room when a particular event occurred - in our house, it was a 'sun' nightlight lighting up (info about this on my blog).

We've been through a lot with sleep, so let me know if you have other questions (just email me)!

Heidi / I'm with Leia said...

oh poor you - I can just imagoine how you must be feeling being so pregnant and not getting your sleep. I do hope you can figure out a good solution.

PS the baby photo is so sweet - reminds me of my little boy who prefers sleeping with both arms above his head

Adrienne said...

We had so much "luck" with our kiddos - both really good sleepers. And we never fussed over it too much. My youngest (from 2.5-5) used to have nightmares. And wasn't the sleeper his older sister was. My "solution" (which won't be helpful) was to not stress over it, analyze it or take it too seriously. If they needed snuggling in the night, that's what they got. If they needed a bottle and cartoons in the morning so I could sleep a bit more....that's what they got. The nightmare phase was the longest and most disruptive....everything else seemed to come and go and only last a short time. Managing our own fatigue and impatience was always the hardest part...so don't get down on yourself!! This too will pass!

Mark said...

Sorry, I have nothing for you. My kids have taken turns, over the years, waking up in the middle of the night and coming to my bed. I'm not sure I've slept through the night in over 11 years. So, I don't want to hear it out of you.
Happy Thanksgiving!
Is the Family in?
m.

Cam | Bibs and Baubles said...

our son regressed on the sleeping for a minute too. it was a phase and he's good now. *fingers crossed* good luck to you!!

Jessica said...

Ugh, doesn't he know you are pregnant and need your sleep AND a new baby is coming so he can't start waking up at night now. Hopefully it is just a short phase and he will get back to normal soon. I think the biggest thing with sleep is consistency, as long as you keep redirecting him to bed each night sooner or later he will go back to his old habits.

Shellsea said...

That is the most precious picture of Nathan. Little C still doesn't sleep through the night sometimes. For a long time we co-slept which let everybody sleep. But Little C doesn't really like that anymore so I can totally sympathize with you on non-sleeping night.

Hungrigyrl said...

You are not alone! We were blessed with the perfect sleeper until we moved him to a big boy bed. Now he sleeps great again, only because I lay with him until he falls asleep. If he wakes up, he'll come to our bed, and I let him. It's the only way I can get sleep!

Moomser said...

Aaargh, I just wrote a really long comment and blogger ate it.
I can't remember it all, but the point was this: he's a good sleeper, he'll start sleeping again; he's going through a lot with the baby on the way so cut him some slack, and while you're at it, cut yourself some slack too! I know you're tired, but you WILL sleep again (sooner or later) just hang on to that thought!
Everything I wrote may be complete crap as I haven't had a full night's sleep in four years.

Elena said...

My oldest was exactly the same! Perfect baby - slept 12 hours a night by 9 weeks. But, right around 2 (just before I was about to have Cooper) the nights became awful! Hang in there - he'll get back in his groove.

Jen said...

Oh dear...I hope this is just a short phase for him! DST messes everything up!
Hugs!!

Grumpy Grateful Mom said...

Oh, I've gone through this off and on. I used to turn on cartoons in my bedroom just so I could sleep longer! Hopefully it's a short phase. I think you've earned the right to a nap during the day. :)

mrs.monica and family said...

visiting from PYHO. My preschooler sleeps well (so you have that to look forward to) but my 7 month old is still waking up 2-3 times a night. I was like you, my first was a breeze with sleep, now with this one...it's a nightmare. I have no advice. I hope it gets better before you're new arrival comes and disrupts your sleep yet again!
http://schermanfamily.blogspot.com

Natalie said...

My little one isn't that big yet...so I'm no help! I am dreading those days though!

Anastasia said...

I'm kind of a sucker and just let them in the bed. And then I pay for it with a bad nights sleep.

Susan said...

I can so relate to the awful feeling of no sleep. It makes you crazy! Perhaps in his own way, he is preparing you for baby's arrival...

Shell said...

DST always threw my kids all out of whack. It usually took a few weeks to get them back on schedule. Hopefully, that's all this is!

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