It's a hard pill to swallow being the parent of a child that doesn't sleep, every book, magazine and midwife promised you they would sleep by now, 'in their own time' except why didn't anyone warn me that their own time might mean when they're 21! You expect it as a newborn, you walk out of hospital with your baby in their car seat and take all the obligatory photos of your 'new arrival' under no false illusions that said arrival will be keeping you up all hours for the foreseeable future. Like me, with Patrick, he was born in June and I really didn't expect much in the way of sleep for the rest of 2016. We're now in 2018 and not much has changed - what on earth am I doing wrong?

As I sit to write this post, I can hear the familiar sounds that I've grown to know over the past year and a half, 'he's going to wake soon' I think to myself. And just as a broken clock tells the correct time twice a day, I'm right about something, he's waking. So tonight wont be the night he decides to sleep through, maybe tomorrow? Except, tomorrow hasn't ever came, I'm always holding on, playing guessing games and living on wishful thoughts because if I'm totally honest I have absolutely no idea why my child wakes in the night. I remember at antenatal classes being told how 'in tune' with my baby I'd be, and I am, for the most part. I can predict when he needs a bowel movement and I'd put good money on being able to tell what he's up to, just by the look on his face but I can't tell you why he woke tonight, or last night and I wont be able to tell you when he wakes tomorrow.

I put a lot of it down to beginning nursery, and me returning from maternity leave. I think it was harder on him than I thought, I naively presumed that like Noah, he'd just roll with it. But I don't think we ever managed a two week period, without me receiving a call to collect him, he was always poorly whether it be a temperature, sickness, runny bowel movements, they cycle never ended. Whenever he seemed to recover from one nursery bug, he caught another.

It's tough, I was the Mum who's baby slept through from five weeks, so perhaps this is a reverse karma? Even in those days you don't sleep soundly yourself, being haunted by his NICU stay I must have woke myself every hour to check he was still breathing. Now it's as if he pays the favour back, he likes to let me know he's doing ok, every single hour of the night. He turned six months and as if a mist descended, he began to wake in the night. And so here we are over a year later and I'm as sleep deprived as ever. I could help myself out, head up to bed earlier and catch those hours before twelve when he seems to forget that he's a wakeful babe. But, where is my evening? Nobody remembers the nights they slept really well a wise person once said, but I don't think that someone ever had a screaming toddler at 2am to contend with.

I'm probably over egging the situation, it could be a lot worse. He doesn't wake up and want to discover the world, he is still very tired, he just simply wants me. And though controlled crying saved our bacon many moons ago, living in semi-detached house I am not prepared to subject my neighbours to the onslaught of a crying marathon. Patrick is not the baby he once was, he's now stubborn and determined and I will most certainly cave before him to whisk him up for a cuddle, quite often it's all he wants is for me to stand and rock him back to sleep, though it's a habit I certainly don't want to fall into because at the moment he does actually go down really well at bedtime without any support. I don't really have a solution for my problem, there isn't anything we've not tried, he isn't waking for milk, he's not teething - I've ran out of excuses to make for him. He's just Patrick and I guess Patrick doesn't like to sleep all night?

1 comment

  1. Just found your blog today!
    This post is af though it is written by me but in the future. I completely sympathise with you because I have an 11 month old who is a terrible sleeper at night. Pre 6 months it was every 3 hours which was fine but post 6 months, it can be hourly, half hourly, lucky if we get 2 or 3 hours! I’ve just had to accept she will sleep when she is able to whenever that may be !

    Soffy // themumaffairs.blogspot.com