the great sleep dilemma

I feel like “sleep” or the lack there of has been popping up everywhere lately.  It’s been in articles, blog posts, even memes and I’m certainly hearing about it from friends.  Most importantly I’m living it.  We were blessed with our 2nd child being a naturally “good sleeper” whatever that means but our first born, not so much.  We struggled a bit in the beginning with which sleep training “method” to use and while we half assed a couple of them for a few days or so we never fully committed and never really cared at the time.  Dewey has always loved having a kid in our bed given that I’m not a big snuggler but we never really committed to co sleeping either.

Every night one of us or both of us will lay with Maris reading books and then ocasionally one of us will fall asleep with her for at least an hour.  If it’s Dewey, he struggles to fall back asleep once he officially goes to bed for the evening and if it’s me then I’m just crabby waking up to get back in my own bed.  Then, what used to be sporadicly has now turned into an almost every night routine of Maris calling for me (ONLY ME) sometime between 1:30 and 2:30 am and asking me to come in and snuggle with her.  I kindly oblige most nights but I’d be lying if I said that at 2am I’m not feeling some sort of frustration about our habit.

This past week I mentioned to her that when we get back from Costa Rica we are going to work on her falling asleep by herself and not calling for me in the middle of the night.  She looked at me with these adorable sad little eyes and said “but why mommy?” To which I pulled out some hoopla about how none of her other friends do this (terrible tactic I know) and she is about to be 5 and blah blah blah.  Honestly as I was saying it crossed my mind that I don’t actually have a good reason to change our current pattern.  Dewey and I had discussed it a bit and felt like it would give us a little more “us” time if the kids went to bed by themselves but to be fair we get a lot of us time and not a lot of one on one time with the kiddos.  Some of the best talks I have with her are right before she falls asleep.  It’s not rare that she and I will chat for 30 minutes about her day, things we are grateful for or just silly things that she likes to make up and banter about.

She’s not going to call for me forever.  And while it can be frustrating in the middle of the night, waking up in her bed does start every day with a smile.  I worried for so long about what other people said about what I needed to “fix” about her sleep and I’m learning to just embrace it.  Like anything else in life that doesn’t mean it’s always pretty but it sure is full of love.  Even on the ugly days…

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