I am utterly convinced sleep deprivation is a form of torture. In fact, I am living proof. Walking, talking (although not very well or coherently) proof that lack of sleep is no fun. For anyone. Particularly the mumma who has to work and function like a grown up.
This single mother gig is not always all sunshine and rainbows. Sometimes it’s really difficult. Like last night for example. My happy little Love Bug went to sleep at her new slightly later bed time. This later bed time is fabulous for me, because I now get to spend more time with her during her waking hours during the week. She self settled like a dream and off to sleep she went.
Until I got into bed that is. To be fair, she gave me enough time to sink into a very nice sleep before she started to scream. And by scream, I don’t mean cry loudly.
I mean SCREAM.
AT. THE. TOP. OF. HER. TORTURED. LITTLE. LUNGS.
And she didn’t stop. For THREE hours.
I tried every trick in the Mumma book to try to rid her of whatever it was that was making her so distressed.
Quiet talking. Gentle pats. Nappy change. Maybe it’s her teeth? No temperature but her top gum feels sharp and bumpy. Some Panadol. Cuddles. Singing. Walking around the house. Teething ointment on her top gum. Increased screaming (how was that even possible?). More snuggles. Kisses too. Loads of them on her forehead, cheeks and temples. Which she normally dissolves into.
Holding her tight and patting her rhythmically and with a little pressure like I used to when she was tiny. This seemed to work.
For about 30 seconds. Then it was on again. A feed. Another change of nappy. Hang on, didn’t I change her nappy an hour ago?
Hmmm … maybe it is her tummy. What did she eat today? One little thing that she’s never had before. That must be it. Poor love. So I try tummy rubs. Firm pressure, circular motion.
As if by magic, she stops screaming. I stop rubbing her tummy and within 10 seconds she’s screaming again. So I rub her back and her tummy. I lay her down beside me and snuggle in. I fall asleep rubbing her tummy. Only for long enough to realise that it’s quiet. I open my eyes, give her an extra big cuddle and gently put her back in her bed.
Sleep my baby, sleep. Otherwise Mumma is at risk of losing her marbles!
What’s that noise? The alarm! Really? Are you serious right now?
I can not wait until bed time tonight. Only about 15 hours until then …