Sunday, May 16, 2010

E: Energy

This is a part of my ABC's of (my) Parenting series

Sleep is the number one topic of discussion among new parents. Whenever people see me, there is no doubt that the famous question "Is he sleeping through the night yet?" will soon follow. And then, when they hear my "no," it's automatically time to start spewing out advice. That's another issue altogether, though. While I realize that I have a super easy and content baby, sleep has been the one thing that we've had our issues with. He's not a great sleeper. There have been more times than not that I would actually label him a BAD sleeper. We were doing okay until 3.5 months- only waking up once per night after we got out of the newborn phase (and even that wasn't horrible; he was going about 4 hours stretches). Then- the 4 month wakeful. We have not escaped. During/after the wakeful, we've started encountering teething. We've also been hitting major developmental milestones: scooting, army crawling, sitting, getting on all fours, rocking, and (currently) trying to crawl. All of these things have left an exhausted mommy and daddy. We've done the 6+ wakings a night. We haven't done the 0 all night yet, but I know we'll get there eventually. We've been following "No Cry Sleep Solution" and have definitely been seeing some progress. When he gets up (no matter how many times that may be), he's back asleep in 30 minutes max. Usually it's 15-20 minutes. That's with absolutely no struggle, as well. He also goes down with no problem for bedtime. Last night- he only got up once. Absolutely amazing.

So, with all of this interrupted sleep, it's no doubt that you become exhausted. This is the aspect of parenting that I am so glad that I don't have to do it alone. Jony can take over in the mornings and let me have a few hours of consecutive sleep so that I can make it through the day. It's truly amazing how I can function on 6 or so hours of sleep (again- not consecutive) when I used to demand about 10. The important thing is to know your limits and stay within them. I've stopped worrying about cleaning during nap time and now take that time to just relax. That's made a world of difference.

Lack of energy is just one of those rites of passages in Parenthood. It gives us all something to relate to each other! Eventually, sleep will come. In the meantime, it's good that Jeffrey's adorable so that I can muster up the energy to get a good game of peek-a-boo in.

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