Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Sleepy Sleepy

Guess what?  Otis is a sleeper!  Hot damn.  It's made me think a lot about kids and sleeping, all the things I've read on the subject, how hard I've tried to get Ingrid to be a sleeper. 

Ingrid was an okay sleeper when she was a baby.  She'd go to bed around 7pm, wake up at 3am, then sleep again until 7am.  I was okay with that, it became totally normal and if she didn't wake up at 3, I still would.  It was always a quick bottle and back to sleep, it never dragged out or anything. long does that need to go on for?  All these other moms would talk about their kids sleeping through the night and when did Ingrid start to and what are you doing about it?  Blah blah blah.  I would just tell myself that it was sort of like she was sleeping through the night.  The technical term was for sleep between midnight and five am, she just did her five hour stretch earlier. 

Alas, it went on and on and on.  Ingrid never got out of that middle of the night waking.  After she stopped having bottles, it was calling out for her nuk.  After we got rid of the nuk, it was that she needed her blanket on.  Now it's anything--her blanket, a drink of water, her pillow, she's lonely, a simple "I need you so much, mama!"  But it is still going on, wake ups at 3am and she's almost 3 years old...

And then there's my Fat Man.  This kid amazes me!  He usually naps until 6pm, then wakes up and has alert time where he loves to be talked to.  He does that until about 9pm, then I put his pjs on, a clean diaper, swaddle him up, and nurse him to sleep.  He sleeps in his bouncy seat right next to our bed and will fall asleep around 10pm.  Most nights he sleeps until 5-5:30am.  Without a PEEP all night long.  And I heard breastfed babies wake more often because the milk is more easily digested! 

So here's the thing--what have I done differently?  Nothing that I can think of.  We started a bedtime routine of bath, books and bed at 2 months old with Ingrid.  We had a fan in her room, we had low lights, we were quiet.  She's just always been a really light sleeper.  With Otis I do the same thing, he has a fan on, low lights, the house is quiet because Ingrid's already in bed.  He just ends up staying asleep.  Is it luck?  Is it the gods showing us not all kids are as complicated as our little Ingrid?  Is it second baby syndrome, where they just go with the flow because they have to?  Who knows!

All I know is that it's even harder to get up with Ingrid at 3am now because her three month old brother is sleeping through the night like she never has!  Last night after the fourth time of her crying out for something I got mad and told her to be quiet and go to sleep, NOW!  She said "Mama, be nice to me!"  I was about to scream, be nice to ME.  SLEEP.  FOR ONCE. 



Fiona said...

I feel your pain! Buy yay for getting at least one sleeper.

Like you I have one of each. Emily (my second) has also always been a great sleeper, and Sofie, well not so much.

Even now (the girls are almost 4 and 6) Emily is a great sleeper and Sofie isn't. Just last night we were joined at 4am, and it would be rare for Sofie to 'sleep through' for an entire week.

But it does get easier and it does get better. Sofie often wakes in the night and will just climb into our bed for a while. Or she will get up, potter around a bit and then put herself back to bed. She knows we don't appreciate being woken in the night to 'chat', and I am learning to sleep/doze through her small nocturnal wanderings.

So I don't think it has anything to do with us (the parent's). They are just individuals from the very start!

MaryAnne said...

Only one of my three kids sleep, and that's only since she turned four. Oh, and we bribed her, or I don't think it ever would have happened.

That is really awesome that Otis sleeps for you! I hope Ingrid starts sleeping for you soon - along with my two non-sleepers!

Helen_D said...

Hi. I sympathise. My nearly 2 year old sleeps through about 5 nights out of 7 and my nearly 4 1/2 year old has slept through about 6 or 7 nights this year!! He usually wants a cuddle or he's cold or he'd just rather sleep with us than on his own. Can't wait for the day when they both reliably sleep through and I feel human everyday instead of just some days!!