Sunday, January 30, 2011

bags under the eyes...

an interesting new sleep pattern for a sweet toddler has caused her poor momma to suffer... :) and, well, if we're being honest, she's suffering, too...as are others...dad, people in public....
oh what a humbling experience parenting can be sometimes... :)

in the last few weeks, K has had a handful of instances where she wakes in the middle of the night and is not going back to sleep.
gone is the time of going in, comforting her, laying her back down, covering her with her blankets, and giving her the trusty paci and watching as she quickly drifts back off to sleep...

now, she does not drift back off to sleep quickly...
for the last two nights (and this is the first consecutive two night occurrence), she's woken around 2 or so in the morning...
when she wakes, she cries and cries...and not a whine or a cry that's normal... she's fearful of something...you can just tell in the intensity of her cry...
when i go in, she's standing in her crib, facing the door...sometimes with her blankets in hand...sometimes not...
she is awake...or she appears to be, at least, but sometimes, i'm not so sure...
of course, i try to calm her...she will usually quiet down, but she refuses to lay back down... she will usually sit down, her back against the rails of her crib...and she will just stare...
i will sit in the glider/rocker and be there to comfort her...if i leave, she will cry and not stop (we've tried)...
two nights ago, she stared for about 20 minutes...i watched her as she would struggle to keep herself upright as not to lay down...she was so tired and her body wanted to lay down but she would not let that happen!
last night, she did lay down, but only because i kept talking to her softly and telling her it was OK and that i was there and nothing was going to happen...
the other night as she became the leaning toddler (hehe), finally, i got up and told her to lay down... she resisted and told me "no....no....no" several times...but she finally gave up and down she went...
i cover her over with her blankets...and she will lay there and softly pet her blankets (she loves the softness of her blankets - always has)...
and she lays there...and lays...and lays....
and she will not fall back to sleep for quite awhile...
two nights ago, after about 40 minutes, i swore she was sleeping (petting her blankets stopped, she wasn't sucking on her paci, not moving or fidgeting, etc.), but when i got up to leave, she looked straight at me... i don't get up loudly either...
thankfully, i'm so tired that, generally, i cat nap in the glider until she's really out, totally... two nights ago, it was 3:30 before i went back to my bed... last night, it was 4...

of course, these wake up instances cause havoc each morning or early afternoon... she will sleep in a little, but in general, she's sleeping around 9 or so total hours each night - and that's interrupted... and for the first few hours upon waking, she's pretty content... but she's a weepy mess after this time... (i'll post some pics about that soon! :)) ...she is clingy... she wants to be held a lot...and she has little patience for playing - especially with puzzles (Lordy! :))... and she would rather watch one of her favorite shows or DVDs sitting next to you - which isn't bad, but honestly, i don't like plopping her in front of the TV for long periods of time...

nap times are marathons - she slept for almost 3.5 hours yesterday for her nap and woke up well past the time i would have let her sleep until (i was napping myself or i would have gotten her up! :))....

all of this has me really puzzled... it doesn't seem to matter if it's me or if it's Ry who goes in to comfort her... and, if i send Ry in, he doesn't remain consistent with what "we" agreed to do when she wakes up...his need for sleep wins out... we do NOT want her to get out of her crib and get used to that being a way to escape from HER own bed. we don't want her thinking it's OK to wake, cry, and then move to our bed, either... and the only time she's slept in our bed is when she's sick and i have to keep one eye opened as she cat naps through the night...
and, while Ry has never brought her to our bed during one of these middle of the night wakings (i've only let him get up with her ONCE and that will be the last time :)), he did take her OUT of her crib and went into the living room and let her lay with him in the recliner for a few hours... that was NOT ok... so, we just let dad sleep to keep the peace... :)

part of me is wondering if she's really a lot more knowledgeable about the "big change" that's about to happen in her life - her new sister will be here soon... is she trying to soak up as much time with her momma, one on one, as possible? does she sense the change that's coming?
is she having dreams that are so bothersome or scary that she cannot get back to sleep?

i'm really not sure, but if it continues, i think i'm going to have to invest in a good concealer... Lordy, the dark circles under my eyes are so unattractive... :)
(then again, maybe K is just preparing me for my upcoming sleepless nights with a newborn??! :))

time will tell, but i will not stop praying for peaceful dreams and for K's ability to settle herself back down and drift off to sleep should she wake in the middle of the night...

until then, maybe i should go enjoy a quick nap? :)

:)

2 comments:

Pumpkin Patch said...

Night terrors? Pierce had them. Would wake up screaming but wasn't really awake. Really weird and a little scary. The nights were on and off for about 2 months before he "outgrew" them.

Marc, Sarah, and Luke said...

Hmmmm....Boy, I wish I could help you out, but I don't know. The only thing I can think of is that, like you said, she's anticipating the change coming (I've had some other parents tell me they think they're toddlers knew when the baby was about to arrive) or she's having nightmares or night terrors....I would say you best be keeping the napping up in the afternoon for yourself.