Sleep, Why Do You Hate Me?

Whoever said we should “sleep like a baby” has never experienced a night with my two-year-old son. He has been a restless sleeper since the day he was born. If we all slept like him the world would be filled with walking zombies.

For the past week my son has woken up hollering three or four times a night. The first night I thought it was a horrible fluke. After night six I realized that he had developed a terrible habit that doesn’t make me, or my husband, very happy.

Normally he’ll just shout out in his sleep or bump into the wall and make a lot of ruckus that occasionally wakes me up.  But lately he has been waking all the way up crying for me to lie by him. It not only makes me frustrated, but it tears at my heartstrings. I’d love to cuddle to him and lay by him every night. But I know if I do that any hope that I have of him ever getting used to sleeping quietly on his own will be dashed. Also, he’d beat me up all night kicking and punching me while sleeping and I’d lose all chance of getting any rest myself.

The major problem is this: I am more emotional when I am tired. I am more scatter-brained when I am tired. And I am definitely more stressed out when I am tired. That is a triple combination no one wants to see exhibited in my character.

It’s not like this is our first sleeping battle with the little guy. He spent less time than anticipated in my bedside baby bassinet because he’d wake me up every 30 minutes with his moaning and groaning.  I had to banish him to the other room so that I could try to get a little rest. Luckily his older brother is a deep sleeper.

The kid talks in his sleep. He even sings in his sleep.  And worst of all he thrashes around in his sleep like a caged animal trying to break free. Sometimes I’ll wake up at night because I hear a thumping or rustling sound. I am sure an invader has busted through my kitchen door and is heading straight for my room to attack me. Then I listen closer and realize it’s just my 2-year-old wrestling in his covers.

One of the most annoying things about his sleepless nights is that although his tossing and turning keeps him, my husband and me up all night, he is the only one who gets to sleep in. My alarm still rings at 6 a.m. while he wanders out of his bedroom after 8 a.m. He also catches up on his missing Z’s during his daily two-hour afternoon nap.  Unfortunately my adult schedule doesn’t permit such a siesta.

On days filled with yawns and sleep-deprived irritations, I have to remind myself that I would rather wake up four times each night for his entire life than not have the opportunity to raise him at all. If that’s how it’s going to be I’ll accept it. It’s just hard to think rationally like that when I’m too tired to see straight.

4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Amanda Joy Petersen
    Mar 17, 2011 @ 08:10:30

    We went through a similar problem. It’s rough, it’s ridiculous, and it’s hard to pass on a chance when a little boy says, “Mommy lay wif me and ruff (rub) your (my) back.” I hope it gets better soon… too much sleep deprivation will make it easier to get sick; and some nasty junk is going around now.


  2. Jenny
    Mar 17, 2011 @ 09:25:19

    Emma has always been the same way. She coughs a lot at night too that makes her wake up… but she never can stay on her bed cuz she moves too much. Bonking her head on the all, falling off the bed… they all keep her (and me) from getting a great nights sleep.


    • Natalie
      Mar 18, 2011 @ 16:11:34

      Maybe they will grow out of it. I have a baby rail on the side of his bed that I borrowed from my sister-in-law. I keep thinking that I need to give it back to her but I think that if I took it down it would mean he would fall off every night, not just occasionally.


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