Sleep: Rated R for Language


Fuck, fuck, fucking fuck.

**Anyone who thinks it’s abhorrent that a mother of two should cuss like a sailor has not been a mother of two. Or, if they have, then I just don’t know what. There are a few things in life that require cussing like nothing else: carpentry, car mechanics, sewing (for me anyway), computers, and topping my own personal list– having kids. Particularly having two kids. And don’t think I don’t see the irony in the fact that the word most called to mind is what brought the little buggers/angels into this world in the first place.**

Let me illuminate the situation. Although I was in bed for a total of seven and a half hours last night, the devil’s in the details. My longest sleep stretch was an hour and a half. Otherwise, the Babe pretty much woke me up once/hour, until 4:52 when he woke me for good. I spent another half hour trying to coerce him back into sleep, and then got up (in a typically mama-style restrained rage) at 5:25.


Now he’s asleep again, and I suppose I should go back to bed, but his first nap of the day is usually only 30 or 40 minutes, so I suspect it would be an excersize in complete fucking frustration. A person can only spend so long in bed not sleeping before they want to strangle someone.

Why? Why me? I thought sleep deprivation was for mamas who slept their babies in cribs? It did get this way toward the end of the Toddler’s bed sharing/night nursing days, but at four months it seems like I remember getting sleep in three hour increments… Nothing to write home about, but acceptable.

Maybe it’s just worse the second time around because I’m no longer blessed with the naive idea that it will get better as he gets older. I mean, okay, eventually it will get better. But first it will (probably) get worse. I know I’m doing it all wrong. I know I’m training him to need to nurse every little time he wakes up in the night. I saw that I had done that with the Toddler and vowed not to let that develop this time around. But here I did it again already, and I don’t know how I could have managed to do it right. The desire/need to sleep is like a goddamned rip tide.

I have tried a few nights sleeping him in his crib, because it seems he sleeps a bit better in there. I swaddle (what a sweet sounding word for a straght-jacket) him most times when I try to lay him down nowadays, and it does seem to help a ton. Anyway, his first sleep cycle is usually in the crib, from 8 to midnight. Ish. The nights when I tried at that point nursing him back to sleep and laying him back down had mixed success. He slept in longer increments, but since I had to wake so much more fully, and some of the times it took quite awhile to get him back into the crib, it balanced out to a similar baggy-eyed morning. At least this has the possibility of getting better though…? Unless that’s just more naivety.

Ooops, and now I hear the Toddler waking up I think. An hour and a half too early. Fuck.

8 thoughts on “Sleep: Rated R for Language

  1. Keep on cursing. The thing is, tho, it’s a habit you never outgrow. I still have my filthy mouth. But don’t think you’re “doing it wrong.” Every baby is different about everything, including sleep. My first one rarely slept, period; the second one slept for FIVE full hours between feedings. The luck of the draw.

    I wrote a little aphorism today: Women do what they have to; men just do what they must.” Curse, if it’s what you have to do.

  2. Sending you hugs and good sleep vibes from the tipi: darkness and cozy in the trees overlooking the ocean, where a person sleeps and dreams like no other. If you can’t actually sleep, maybe the image will help?
    Your candor is a thing of beauty Meadow! Life is ridiculous and cursing is one of the few true outlets we have. Thanks for being willing to put it out there. You rock.

    1. oh man, i used to sleep like a rock at the tipi. till at least 10 every day, often 11. wow, don’t remotely remember the last time i slept till 10 lately…. not in the last 2 and a half years. not since july 9, 2007.
      thanks fer the cove-y vibe.

  3. Ah CJ, I can totally sympathise. My first, now 3, was the baby you had last night for Two Full Years. I slept never longer than 2hours at a time at night, and by 2 yrs old he stopped sleeping during the day. Now he’s 3 and he still climbs in to bed with me by midnight, and it’s like sleeping next to a 17kg cat, pawing at me, nuzzling into me and generally stealing all of the king sized bed. I did the same as you, and figured that all those who said I was making a rod for my back could get fucked, it was my back and I’d do as I pleased!

    Now, my daughter sleeps in her own room, in her crib and the first stretch at night is 6pm til 3am on a usual night. I figure it is just payback for being so patient with the first. Of course though, this time I am being more strict, like only feeding her if she wakes twice after soothing back to sleep, and as of next week when she wakes for a bottle she’ll be given water so as to train her further to sleep even longer again.

    It’s not the best way, and I don’t think it matters what a mama does, her judgement is never finished. But meanwhile we do what we have to – including swear like a sailor on shore leave – to get through what can seem like the longest day since God’s first born.

    Can’t wait to see your next posts lady, you’re great. Now, go get some rest. Or a Massive MuthaFuckin Coffee.

  4. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh….. I’m feeling ill for you. I have three (5,3,1) of the little blighters (did I say that? I meant angels), and I’m sure I would be a shining example of the loving earth mother if only they would let me (excuse me) fucking sleep! I have done everything from the cot in his own room (baby 1), to cot by our bed (baby 2) and co-sleeping (baby three) and I still get up to the lot of them! I once had visions of a tribe of littlins running around me. NOw I have visions of fending off mental illness. Thanks for sharing. It does make it better to hear other GREAT mothers talk about the crappy reality of it all. Cheerio from Down Under.

  5. *stifled laughter*

    you make you feel SOOOO much better… I thought I was the only one who suffered from stifled mama rage (well.. not the only one…but)

    I’ve had those moments.. actually.. *sigh* what have I gotten myself into.. my second babe is going to drive me nuts, just like the first, huh?

    Although.. I will say (even though I don’t do it as often as I should), I noticed, at least with my one, that the more I get into that fucking rage mode of “I FUCKING NEED SLEEP”.. the less sleep I get… *cough*

    Hope you got some rest *hugs*

  6. I can totally relate. my oldest had a feeding tube for two years so I was up constantly with that thing beeping and spilling. my youngest has mspi and woke/fed/screamed every hour for the first ten months of his life. at almost two, he still gets up two or three times each night. lack of sleep can fuck you up so badly. my decision making skills are so clouded from exhaustion still. I’m grouchy most of the time and it doesn’t help my bipolar disorder either.

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