A great fear of mine as a new parent, and as a newish-parent when number two arrived, was the level of havoc they would reign on my oh-so-precious sleep schedule.
To me, sleep is a reward for a day well lived. It is reprieve from the stressors of life, and it opens up a creative scape of dreams and insights to places and situations I would never imagine. In three words: I love sleep.
I never read a book on sleep training before D was born. I was simply too tired (true story). He trained himself right outside of the womb and within a couple of months was sleeping through the night for 12-15 hours at a time (yes, you read that right). To boot, he would take a morning and afternoon nap, each 90-120 minutes in length.
I returned to work when D turned one, but I am fortunate enough to telecommute, as does the hubs. This combined with the two mega-naps allowed us to keep our sweet little bumpkin out of childcare. Score.
When J was born, things changed. He was nursing like a champ so he wanted to eat every one to two hours. I was tired but determined to exclusively breastfeed, so I toughed it out. He eventually got into a good sleep pattern, and by four months was sleeping through the night.
However, sweet little J does not believe in the necessity of naps. For the first handful of months, the kid would not rest his eyes during daylight hours. I nicknamed him “FOMO” since he obviously has a real fear of missing out.
In the past month, my inner Baby Whisperer has emerged and I got my two sons on the same nap schedule, like a mama-flippin’ boss. They go down after lunch and sleep for 2-3 hours. As I type this, D is going on hour number three and J is hitting the two-hour mark.
Since I have been able to accomplish this feat, the house has been cleaned. Dinner has been made. The outdated and nasty doors to our laundry room cabinets have been primed and sanded.
Life has changed for the better. I wake in the morning rested and I know that I will have time during the day to tackle some of life’s little pleasures (like working and cleaning, yay). I also get to occasionally change my clothes and wear normal person garb by the time my husband returns from work (although today has been a bonified robe day). I have no shame.
It’s crazy what they say about having a baby – he or she will definitely change your lives. The first months of the little person’s existence will be a blur comprised of insomnia, hormones, dirty diapers, and lots of crying (parents and baby included). However, it goes oh-so-fast and before you know it you want to do it again… but I’d better sleep on it.