Up and at ‘Em

They say the early bird gets the worm. Well if that’s the case, my one-year-old could fill an entire Styrofoam cup full of worms for his older brother to take fishing.

He is an early bird.

Unfortunately I am not.

The past few weeks have been grueling, as he’s fallen into the exhausting habit of waking up at 5:30 a.m.

It was cute the first day. I could make the excuse that he was so excited to see his mom that he just couldn’t sleep. It was even OK the second day. I thought maybe he was awake because the two tiny teeth that are poking through his bottom gums were causing him pain.

But after two weeks of my baby waking up before the crack of dawn I’m tired. And I’m terrified that I’m going to have to accept his morning cry as my new every day extra-early alarm clock.

I don’t know what to do.

I don’t dare let him cry himself back to sleep at that hour. I’ve made him do that on other occasions earlier in the night, but by 5:30 a.m. I’m afraid he’d wake my other two boys.

And it’s not like I can snatch him out of his crib and cuddle up to him in my bed and go back to sleep. I’ve tried.

We end up tossing and turning, him pulling my hair, then steam rolling me over and over again while periodically screaming to get down. Not restful.

And he always wakes up bright-eyed. It’s not like I go in his room to find him groggy and sleepy. He’s rip roarin’ ready to go. At 5 a.m.!

It’s incredible.

But don’t be fooled. Even though he’s wide awake at that time, that doesn’t mean he’s always pleasant. Sometimes he’s happy and playful. Other times he’s so grumpy I can’t get anything done.

On those days I pray my oldest two boys don’t need me to pack them a home lunch. I don’t even think I could put him down long enough to put it together. And it’s wicked hard to spread peanut butter and jelly onto a sandwich one-handed. I’ve tried.

It’s not like I hold him until he falls asleep and then lay him down. I fight my every urge to swaddle him in my arms until he closes his eyes, and I lay him down while he is tired, yet awake. He goes to sleep easily. He just doesn’t stay asleep LONG enough.

I just don’t get it.

I’m going to look into it. I’m welcoming any advice and suggestions for getting my son to sleep longer. If you’ve read any good articles or books on baby sleep patterns lately, please let me know. I’d love to read them.

Because I’m dragging these days. I’m tired. I’m feeling run down and I don’t have any motivation – which is not normal for me.

I’ve got to figure this out before the time change. Otherwise this 5:30 a.m. wake-up time will really feel like 4:30 a.m. I get tired just thinking about that.


3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Lana
    Oct 03, 2013 @ 08:51:01

    I really liked Healthy Sleep Habits Happy Child. At first I was against letting Nellie cry, but then I talked to a friend who really helped me. I started not going in to get Nellie until 7:00 am even if she wakes up before that (she usually wakes up at 6:15-6:30), but even if she cries for a few minutes she’ll usually just start playing with her animals and blankets in her crib. I started doing that when she was a year old. I would just let her cry until 7 am. I’m trying to get ready for the day at that time. We put her to bed at 7 pm, so I feel like that’s reasonable. Anyway, maybe since your other boys are sleeping you could put a fan or something in their room to drown out the crying until Ross sleeps later. Are they in the same room? That’s hard, though with the other boys. I’m dreading that, too, whenever we have another one. Nellie used to wake up that early until I let her cry and then she just learned to go back to sleep and then after a week or so she would just not wake up until later. It’s so hard, though. Good luck Natalie! You’re doing a great job! Hopefully you find something that works for you guys!


    • Natalie
      Oct 03, 2013 @ 10:10:05

      That book sounds great Lana. I just put a request on it for the Library. Yes, all three of my boys are still in the same room. My oldest is too scared to move to the basement bedroom. But my two oldest boys are going duck hunting this Saturday really early so I am going to take advantage of them not being in the room and try to let my baby cry himself back to sleep at that time. We’ll see what happens. Keep your fingers crossed for me! 🙂


  2. Lana
    Oct 04, 2013 @ 09:34:06

    For the most part I really like that book. He seems to know what he’s talking about, but not too extreme. Like with anything you can take what you want from it. Maybe the boys could sleep at grandma’s for a few days or something. 🙂 I don’t know. That’s a good idea to try it this weekend when they’re gone just to see what happens. Who knows maybe he’ll go back to sleep. 🙂 Good luck! One of the things I learned was to be consistent whatever you decide to do. 🙂 call me if you have any questions.


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