Monday, November 8, 2010

Sleep Regression

Everyone told me that once baby turned 12 weeks, he'd be "STTN." That's internet for "sleeping through the night." And sure enough, he hit that milestone early! 8 weeks, and we were sleeping from 8:00pm - 5:30am. It was fantastic.

But then I started reading about the "4 Month Wakeful." It's this scary beast of a time where the ex-perfect baby becomes raging nighttime psychopath and makes you want to pull even more of your already-shedding-like-a-yeti hair out of your head. We hit this at 4 1/2 months. And while it sucked, it was more like a wake up at 2:30am in addition to the 5:30. So, while tiring, it was doable.

Enter 6 months. A fabulous time in the life of baby. He is super interactive. When you ask him questions, sometimes he figures out how to answer with a movement or a look. He makes all sorts of weird sounds that I guess constitute combinations of vowels and consonants, but really, all I think is that my child is going to blow raspberries solely until he is 20. He eats all sorts of crazy purees, like broccoli, peas, and pears....with whole grain rice cereals and oatmeals and dissolvable crackers called "Mum Mums." He laughs constantly and is a master at finding spare skin on your face and pulling it every which way. He basically cracks his shiz up.

But 6 months must be tough on the brain, because not more than 2 days later, the worst night of my life ensues. Down to bed at 7:30pm. Up screaming at 8pm. 9pm. 10pm. 11pm. But he won't be comforted at 11pm, so we have to feed him a bottle, then keep him up for an hour so he will get sleepy enough to go back down again. Then DH takes over so I get a breather, but then....2:30am, 3am, 4am, 5am, 6am. Does he have a freaking alarm clock he's hiding from me? I very nearly lost my freaking mind.

Never been a fan of cosleeping, but after the 6am wake up, I grabbed him out of his crib and took him to the daybed in the guest room, and just held him as he flailed and cried until he fell asleep. And we slept for 2 whole hours. Because I was that exhausted.

Now, the subsequent nights haven't been as bad, but they've sucked all the same. Some nights he screams an hour after I put him down, then 2 hours later, then 2 hours after that. Other nights, he just flails all around until you have to go in to insert his pacifier to calm him the eff down. And last night, he slept straight through the night for the first time in weeks. I'm not holding out any hope of a repeat.

But boy, are those sleep regressions hard! He's oblivious to them, but they kill me, especially when I am working the 12 and 13-hour days that I have been. I read a lot of blogs where people say that even though you are working and have a baby, you should never have an excuse to not exercise or train. I'm calling bullshit right now. If you couple a husband who works nights with my work schedule and my sleep-regression-riddled child.....well, perhaps you would understand why I am now in the worst shape of my life.

Quite frankly? I'm lost. My social life four years ago centered around triathlon and my friends on my team. I didn't have those friends when I moved to Colorado, but I did still have the training and the sport. Now?? I can't even find the time to go on a run. And when I have the time? I've had 3 1/2 hours of sleep and opt to get 1 more. It's a sorry state of affairs, but my body calls the shots.

Surely I would have known about this before having a child, right? Ha! I didn't even have a friend who had a kid, really. I was the first! So no, I didn't realize life would come to a crashing halt post-baby. But I know that I will crawl out of this hole one of these days. Until then, I shall continue to kvetch, particularly when we go through these horrific regressions.

Hard to be mad at this face for not sleeping, though.....

1 comment:

universalibrarian said...

I really enjoyed reading your posts about how life has changed after having a baby. We have been going through a lot of the same things (Sage is 4 months right now) and it is good to read that people survive this bit even when it's hard. I like your call of "Bullshit" on those who would make you feel bad for not doing enough. Having a baby is PLENTY and add a full time job, yup, that's more than a full day.
Hope your day is going well.
I like that the internet lets people stay in touch a lot more than before (even if it's just knowing what is going on through facebook or blogs)