Today was one of those days. One of those days where by 4pm you’re really and truly not sure that you’re going to make it to bedtime.
I told you guys how Cullen has started sleeping through the night. It has been all sunshine and roses and less eye makeup for days. And while I’m certainly not complaining, this new sleeping at night thing has changed how Cullen is sleeping during the day, and I still haven’t quite figured it out. You know how babies are – they like to keep us guessing.
For several days he’s been sleeping until 6:30-7am, but this morning he woke up at 5am and seemed a little too awake. My husband and I both (independently) tried soothing him back to sleep for almost an hour. Around 6am, I gave in and fed him, desperate for a bit more sleep myself. At 7am I finally dragged myself out of bed, while Cullen snoozed until an (unheard of) 8am. Amazing!
We were both well rested and happy, but I wasn’t really sure what would happen next. On a typical morning, Cullen would be going down for his morning nap between 8:30 and 9am, but I knew there was no way he’d go back to sleep so quickly. So I watched his cues, fed him breakfast, let him play, and got ready to head out for our afternoon. By 10am it was clear he would not be napping anytime soon, and we had plans to hit the pool with his baby buddies at 11. I thought for sure he’d crash in the car and at least catch a few zzzz’s. He proved me wrong.
We got to the pool and he was still going strong. We played, splashed, ate lunch, splashed some more – still not so much as an eye rub. After changing out of wet swim suits, we headed to a friend’s house to visit her newborn, and I purposely left Cullen strapped into his car seat so he wouldn’t destroy her house. He surprised me by being giggly and playful, and happily sitting there for almost 30 minutes without protest. Who’s child is this?
We hopped back in the car for the long drive home, and I knew he was finally drained and ready to snooze. At this point he was overdue for his second nap of the day – surely he couldn’t skip both of them. Sure enough, he got quiet and did some vacant staring out the windows, but never fully committed to actual sleep. Don’t get me wrong – I have no problem with my baby being awake, as long as he’s happy and rested and acting like a human.
Not long after we got home, things took the inevitable turn for the worse. Cranky, thrashing, crying at every stumble or dropped toy. I put him into his crib to rest but he would have no part in it. He was desperately tired, but had worked himself past the point of sleep and into crazed exhaustion. I spent the next three hours texting my husband, venting on Twitter, and praying for the will to survive until bedtime. I sang, I rocked, I soothed, I prayed.
Somewhere around 6:30pm, I heard my husband’s keys in the door, and I gave myself a mental high five that we had made it. Ten hours without a single break – not even a moment to eat or pee. Today would not be the day that broke me, but man if it didn’t come close. Tomorrow is a new day, and I’m hopeful that it will include at least one nap. We have no plans and nothing on our schedule – I learned my lesson from pushing too hard this afternoon.
How do you survive days like this?
Read more from Emily on her personal blog Daily Garnish, where she creates healthy vegetarian recipes, recaps her latest running adventures, and chronicles life as a new mom to her son and two crazy dogs. You can follow along on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest too!