We’re now 6 months into “Project Sleep” and how to actually get some. I was expecting to lose sleep when my daughter was born, of course, babies never sleep. But no one can prepare you for the life you’re going to lead when you are awake all night every night for an extended period of time and the sleep deprivation you build up. This is a log of the life we’ve lived since August 2015. Mums, you’re not alone!
Ok, so I was awake for 48 hours and hadn’t eaten or drank in what seemed like forever, then they hand you this bundle of “joy” and let you get on with it. They cry, poop and require almost constant attention 24/7 and you haven’t even had chance to catch up on the missed sleep from the labour. It’s not that bad though, I rode high on adrenaline for a week and found myself bouncing around the house doing the cleaning and hopping out of bed at 3am to do the 5th feed of the night and I didn’t even mind. Here is my birth story for a bit more background.
The adrenaline starts to wear off, but it’s ok, we had 2 weeks of paternity leave and some annual leave at my husbands disposal to help out with all the leg work. Naps in the day were easily shared between us but the colic from 9pm to 2am left us both exhausted and at the end of our tether. Still didn’t feel that tired though, in fact, we look quite spritely. A problem shared is a problem halved. Here is another view of month 1 – easier said than done!
Month 2, 3 and 4
This is were s**t gets real. My husband is back at work, the colic continues along with the 2-3 hourly feeds day and night. I seem to operate on around about 2 hours sleep a night and, honestly, have no idea how I even left the house. Coffee was my best friend and I ended up going to bed at 8.15 every evening to try to get some sleep before the onslaught continued. I never spent any time with my husband as we were either battling the baby-beast or trying to sleep. I didn’t seem to watch any TV from August until December, it would be no use trying to place me in the land of the living, because truthfully, I was just existing.
So now we were at Christmas time, things started to turn in our favour. Our daughter would, mostly, go down to bed in the evening leaving us with enough time to have a small chat and maybe even eat some food. I still ended up in bed by 8.30-9.00 as nights still consisted of 2, 4 and 6am wake ups and feeds. Our little one could now roll over, which then brought on the trouble of her waking up on her tummy and screaming the house down until we turned her back again… and repeat the whole night long.
We now have regained some resemblance of a life. Our daughter would hopefully go to bed between 6.30-8.00 with some fuss but then we were able to watch TV and eat in relative peace. We decided to put her in her own room, and that changed our lives. She slept better without us disturbing her and we slept better because we didn’t wake up for every snuffle. Our previous routine was that we would sleep in the spare room with her until 3 when we swapped beds and the other took over the shift. Not waking up at 3 was a massive game changer and we felt less like zombies and more like people again, look at our rested faces!
Mums in the depths of sleep deprivation, please know that all parents have been there. I would go as far as to say I don’t really remember anything from August until December as at the time I was in an exhausted haze. I remember the delirium of trying to work out if what happened was a) real and b) whether it happened today or yesterday. Everything blended into one. I didn’t wear make up for months; I didn’t eat lunch, brush my hair and sometimes not even my teeth as I couldn’t operate on any more than 10%.
It’s not better yet, it’s just not as bad as before. Waking up at 6 is a treat not to be underestimated!
If you fancy leaving comment, please do, they always make my day!