For the Love of Sleep

I’ve always loved sleep. As a teenager my mean girl friends used to tease me for becoming a grouchy tired “pumpkin” at 10 pm on a Friday night. As an adult, I’ve had to try hard at discipline with exercise, eating well, and keeping the house clean, but not sleep. It’s been a consistent priority in my life.

Enter Muffin Uncomfortable. Somehow I managed to maintain very unrealistic expectations of babies and sleep. Oh sure, my ideas were backed by first person evidence that newborns do in fact sleep like little human bean bags in their carrying cases during parties. I enjoyed multiple dinners out with new parent friends, sipping wine while their little bundles snoozed away tucked into the corner of the booth at a busy restaurant. We all looked on adoringly at the peaceful little muffin, and I mentally filed that picture away, knowing when I got my turn that I after a few weeks getting to know my little baby, we could reemerge a little tired but mostly the same.

But this was not to be. My long awaited treasure came into this world wide awake and curious. Comments like, “she’s so alert!” were fun at first, until I realized that really meant I had given birth to a very conscious little person and not the bean bag I had asked for. The first few, no, make that TEN weeks were grueling. Daniel and I were transported into a war zone right from the first cry. Our alert little person did not sleep. Comments about alertness were followed by, “I’ve never seen a newborn fight sleep like this one!” There were some moments, in those mysterious a.m. hours that I literally laid on the floor, weeping with exhaustion and crying out to God for mercy on our family. I was THAT tired.

Gradually, I started to adjust to the lack of sleep, and slowly Naomi taught herself how to turn off her active mind and let it rest. When people ask me how she’s sleeping I sometimes want to punch them in the face. How’s she sleeping? She’s the smart, people loving person I prayed for and that does not make a sleepy baby.

Thankfully, she continues to get better, but in this war, the battles continue. We (the parents) were recently defeated in a three day pacifier battle. However, we can claim victory in the “Battle of the Rock N Play” and the “Swaddle to Zipadeezip® Campaign”. I think this might be our thing. Two parents who love to sleep vs an active and alert little girl who loves to play and interact and learn. I’m learning that this, like many other things we will face as parents is just a season. So in times of frustration and exhaustion I will belt out my battlecry for this sleepless time…”THIS IS NOT FOREVER!”

One Response to “For the Love of Sleep”

  1. Joy
    May 16, 2015 at 9:39 am #

    So glad you are blogging again! I’m amazed at how parents of babies actually adjust to sleep…you are definitely an example, considering how you used to hit a wall at 10pm! (No mean girl shade). It just amazes me to think of what kind of things our little alert, brilliant, sensitive Naomi might do with her life!

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