Snarkling Clean

Snarkling Clean- because you don't have to cuss to make fun of stuff. Two dedicated readers discuss romance novels- from what made us weep with joy to what made us want to poke pencils through our eyeballs.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Sweet Sweet Slumber

Happy Tuesday to all! I am in a glorious mood and ready to share my happiness with the world. Why, you ask? Well sit back, grab a cuppa Joe, and lemme tell ya a story.

Ten years ago, I gave birth to a baby boy. A happy baby boy with dimples and big brown eyes and the happiest personality. After only about 2 months, Little Man was sleeping through the night, from about 8pm to 7:30am, with nary a peep from his lips. This alone earned him the title Easiest Baby in the World and gave me the mistaken impression that I had all kinds of mothering skillz.

Fast forward nine years. I gave birth to a baby girl. A sweet baby girl with big blue eyes, chubby wubba cheeks and a more, shall we say, difficult personality. Who never slept. NE-HEH-VER-HER SLEPT. So much for my mad mothering skillz. I was totally not prepared for Miss Par-tay staying up all night long and only falling asleep when I held her. What was wrong with her? Didn't she know she comes from a long line of Olympic Sleepers? Keep in mind she is now 14 months old. I have not slept for FOURTEEN MONTHS. THAT IS ONE YEAR PLUS TWO MONTHS. WITH.NO.SLEEP. INOLIKEITNOTSLEEPING!

Rewind to last Tuesday. I reached my breaking point. Chickita woke me up 5 times on Monday night. Crying. Hungry. Whining. Not going back to sleep unless I held her a certain way and all the planets were in alignment. I was an emotional wreck. I cried. I whined. I was hungry. I couldn't take a nap when she did because I had a buttload of work to do for my actual paying job. I decided it was time for help.
Sleep? I don't need no stinkin' sleep. I am powered by cuteness.

I called my pediatrician and spoke with the nurse. She told me what to do, what she had done months earlier with her son. "It's hard," she said. "It's hell on the parents for a few nights," she said. "But it's worth it in the end." Did I have to do this? Couldn't I just slip her a Nyquil mickey and call it good? I called the Sleep Disorders Center at the local hospital and begged for whatever tips they could give me. They pretty much seconded what the nurse said. Oh, crap. This means I have to do this thing. Waah. I even googled "sleeping through the night" and came up with a website and the name of a doctor who wrote a book on sleep disorders in young children and how to get them to sleep through the night. I went online and requested the book from our library. My neighbor came over. I spilled the whole story to her and asked what she thought. "I have a book at home you may want to read. I haven't read it, but maybe it will help you." Guess what book it was? The same one I had requested from the library.

Okay, Lord, I guess you are answering my prayers by telling me from three different sources what to do. Fine, I'll do it. But you will have to give me the strength to make it through the next few days, because it's gonna get ugly 'round here.

I started this program last Tuesday night. My daughter? She was not happy with the program. She hated the program. She cussed me in baby language about the program, and I am pretty sure she made some derogatory remarks about our heritage and her grandmother, too. But last night? The daughter, she slept 12 hours straight with no crying, whining, or any other sound emanating from her bedroom. She is happier now than she has been because of all this uninterrupted sleep. She takes killer naps that actually give me time enough to work, and clean, and blog. (I was going to add exercise, too, but let's not get all carried away here.)

And Mommy? Has gotten more sleep in the past week than I have gotten in the last 3 weeks combined. In fact, I am getting so much sleep that I am groggy half the time. My body was so used to operating on very little sleep that now that it's getting normal sleep, it doesn't know how to handle it. But it's a nice problem to have.

So to make a long story even longer...I said all that to tell you that now that I am sleeping regularly and my daughter is sleeping regularly and I might actually be able to budget and manage my time, you should be hearing more from me. I am going to try to post at least once a week (shut up, Robyn, I can hear you laughing)and maybe, just maybe, it will actually make sense when I do.

But now, I am off to make more coffee. Mommy needs a jolt.

I like sleep. And using rolls of tape as bracelets.


Blogger December Quinn said...

OKAY, are you going to share the title of the freaking book or what? My youngest is 22 months and still won't sleep through the night. She also refuses to sleep in her bed and insists on spending the night on the couch.

11:49 AM  
Blogger Missie said...

It is called Solving Your Child's Sleep Problems by Dr. Richard Ferber. Read it all the way through, then decide when to start implementing his plan. Make sure you have nothing going on for the first few days, cuz dang. It is hard, but having a child who doesn't sleep or has sleep issues is harder. Let me know how it goes, my friend.

11:57 AM  
Blogger Missie said...

Sorry, sorry, sorry! It is called "Solve your child's sleep problems," not "Solving.." Sorry. Just saw the book when I made a mad dash to the fridge for a Pepsi and realized I gave you the wrong title. Please don't hurt me.

12:27 PM  
Blogger Missie said...

p.s. Dr. Ferber is now the Sexiest Man in America to me. I have never seen him, and he could look like a troll and be old enough to be my grandfather, but he gave me the tools to get my baby to sleep, so that equals SEXAY to me, baby.

12:28 PM  
Blogger Robyn said...

I so wish that book had been out when my dd was 2. AIEE.

2:23 PM  
Blogger Bernita said...

So, is the advice to let them howl?

5:33 AM  
Blogger Missie said...

That's what I thought too, but it's a modified cry-it-out program. I could never just let her cry for hours, because that would drive me nuts, but this actually gives you a PLAN, which I was severely lacking beforehand.

First night: When child wakes up, let cry for 5 min. Go in & check on child, calm her down, stay no more than 2-3min, and leave when she's still awake. Set timer for 10min, then go in and repeat calming process, etc. Leave, then set timer for 15 min. Then each successive time that night, make it 15mins.

Second night: Let child cry for 10min before going in. Follow above steps, except set first timer for 15mins. Then do 20mins.

Each night, increase time before going in by 5mins. The idea is for the child to fall asleep while you are not in the room, and getting used to the idea that it's okay for them to cry and they'll still be fine.

My daughter screamed from 1:30am to 3:15am the first night, then fell asleep. Second night, she cried from 12:30am to 1:15am. Third night, she only cried for about 5 mins on 2 diff occassions before she fell back to sleep. Fourth night, only woke up once and cried for not even 5 min. By the fifth night, she was getting herself back to sleep if she woke up.

Last night, which was the 7th night, she woke up once and sat up, but couldn't figure out how to lay herself back down again. I just walked in and gently pushed her down, and ZONK. She was out like a light before I even straightened her blanket.

I hope all that made sense. Anyone who wants any addtl info can email me directly.

December, I hope this works for you too. It is soooo hard at first, and if anyone had told me that within a week, we would be sleeping like champs, I would have laughed. But it is the best thing I have ever done for the girl and I should have done it months and months ago.

9:54 AM  
Anonymous Michelle said...

Ferberizing is HARD. And some babies just will not sleep. Hugs on the 14 month nightmare! But I'm so glad you got your full night's sleep finally. Yay!

4:28 PM  
Anonymous DonnaDbytheSea said...

Just came about your site while researching eye colors for some writing I'm doing(your blog from Jan '06 came up, go figure eh?). Wonderful humor and down right great atitudes!:-) This one had me howling and crying, my son is now 5, we have recently moved and his bedroom is farther away... crys of "MOM!!" throughout the night are beginning to wear me out. I can remember the early years where he was one of the sleep champions, now he is regressing! Well, I am sure he will work it out once he gets used to our new home. Otherwise...hmmm Nyquil mickey sounds good, maybe for me tho!

Just thought you'd like to know how many people you are touching out there. Both of you have such a great sense of humour and dose of truth (neighbor not watching her own child). These are things we all deal with daily, good to know we are not alone out there!!.. wait isn't that some sort of X-Files episode? Weird flashback. Can't wait to read more, especially some of the dish about the new books. I am a fan too.
Blessings, glad to have found this space!:-)

10:36 AM  

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