Ah, teething – torture the whole family can enjoy!
My normally placid, fabulous little self-settler and sleeper (before you roll your eyes at me, yes – I know how lucky I am!) has been replaced with a baby who sleeps in fits and starts, wakes screaming and is inconsolable.
I hold her in my arms, close to me so she can feel my heart beating. This generally soothes her, but the last few nights barely makes a difference.
I walk laps of my small bedroom and try not to yelp in pain – or swear like a wharfie – every damned time I kick my toes on one or other piece of furniture.
I sing to her. Don’t be like that, she usually loves it! I dance with her. I walk laps of the house. I change position. I change rooms. Make sure she’s not too hot. Make sure she’s not too cold. Make sure she’s not wet. Make sure she’s not hungry.
It’s exhausting. Even more so because it’s the middle of the night. Why is everything so much worse then? Screams are louder. Nerves are more frayed. The hours closer to dawn seem to speed towards you like a freight train. And of course, the morning will bring another day.
Another work day. Yep, one of those days I have to kiss my three beautiful creatures goodbye, head out into the world and function. Like a proper grown up. Fabulous.
So it’s a little after 4am. We’ve managed about two hours of broken sleep since 10pm. My attempt to remain calm so she doesn’t pick up on my stress slides right off the cliff.
And it threatens to take my sanity with it.
That’s when the furry night nurse really comes into his own. I know dogs are amazing. Their perception is phenomenal. My two are never far from me – and have a knack for knowing precisely when I need them.
Bear is almost 3. He’s a big goof of a thing. All noise and bravado on the outside, but a marshmallow on the inside.
Except in my times of incredible stress. At the precise moment I think it might be next stop psych ward, do not pass gp, do not collect $200 – there he is. He and Bella have actually been there all along, but right now he’s scooping up my sanity and giving it back to me by holding my gaze, then reaching out to link his paw around my arm.
It’s okay, his big beautiful brown eyes tell me. I’m here. I’m not going anywhere. We’ll get through this. Together.
You can just think of me as your furry night nurse.