Monday, January 17, 2011

Sleep...where are you?

I have a child who doesn't sleep very well. Since he was born, he has gone through every night waking up every two hours (or sooner), every single night. We've had a few freak moments where he went for four or five hours, but they can be counted on one hand. He's been sleeping in our bed, with us, since he was 5 months old. We tried to move him into the crib then from his bassinet but his sleeping got even worse, so I caved and let him into our bed. I've actually loved having him there, despite the guilt I feel about giving in. He is still breastfeeding and can only get to sleep with the boob. Dad is not allowed to be involved, he only makes the Little Man freak out even more. So, putting him to bed has been my job since he was born and I'm on duty all night long - after being on duty all day long. I go between feeling good about sticking to my decisions about not letting him cry it out and feeling like such a fool because I've created this situation where he's totally dependent on me and I'm too scared to change it. After almost two years of not sleeping, I don't have the energy to even think about what its going to take to wean him and get him sleeping on his own in his own room. Maybe he will surprise me and it will end up being a relatively straight forward process - but I'm guessing he will fight it with every last ounce of energy he has. I'm sure that's just the lack of sleeping talking, but it does make it really hard to get motivated to make a change and stick to it.
I've never really talked about any of this with anyone before, I've been too embarrassed and ashamed. But I think about it all the time. ALL THE TIME. And I wish with all my heart that there was some easier way to change this, that he would just fix it all on his own for us and then we could move on. He's gotten too big for our bed and wakes himself up all the time running into one of us. He needs more space and so do we. I sleep on the edge in the weirdest positions, waking up with sore hips and back every morning, and could sleep for days to be honest, if I was allowed. We don't do anything at night because he often wakes up a couple times even before we go to bed - I'm lucky to get to sit through an hour tv show, let alone a movie. I can't plan anything because who knows how the night will go. My friend says I need to plan to take a night once a week away and let Dad put him into bed, but I'm so not ready for that. I don't know how I will ever be ready for any of this. But I do know, if it goes on much longer, I will lose my mind and it will end up coming from a place of anger and bitterness, instead of love and support.
I have no idea how its all going to play out, but I am going to start to move towards making it a reality - somehow. I just wish I had more support close by.

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