Thursday, December 11, 2008
Chronicle of a sleep deprived mother
This post has been inspired by Heather at ChezWhat? I was relieved to read her blog as I identify with missing my mind a lot lately too. You see, raising 3 young kids who have not been as fond of sleeping as I am, has taken its toll on my proper brain function. Lets begin with my first born, a daughter, A. When A was born 5 years ago, like a lot of first time moms, I was stressed beyond reason. Breastfeeding was not going well a lot and I started to express my milk using a pump. Every 3 hours. For 40 minutes a session. I will not comment on what this torture did to the shape of my breasts as I was so determined to feed my baby the best that long term effects of anything but her health mattered least. The first time I had to supplement her formula was when she was 3 months of age and I almost cried. You see, I believe I was hypnotized by all the baby books I've read that emphasized the importance of breastfeeding and I felt like I was a horrible mother to be feeding her her formula. I have to say that I got part of my life back after I started supplementing. Though I continued to pump for another three months, Abby had a pretty good feeding schedule and I was able to get some sleep. When she was about 2.5 years of age, and I was sleeping through the night most days I got pregnant with N. Numerous trips to the bathroom during pregnancy turned out to be nothing compared to the sleep deprivation that was to come with N's birth. Not only did this kid wake up every three hours to eat until he was about 2 years old, he is our early bird, our human alarm clock. He would wake up at 5 a.m. wanting someone to play with him. I got pregnant with T when N was 13 months old. That pregnancy year between attending to my bathroom needs and N's feeding I woke up on average 7 times a night. When T, our little 11 pounder was born, for the first time in months I slept for a stretch of 6 hours the first three days or so. I would wake up all rejuvenated ready to take on a new day. I am not sure what exactly happened since that time for T's sleeping patterns have been so very sporadic. He is eight months old now and I find myself waking up every 2 hours to feed him. Is that normal, people? Yes, sleep and brain deprived I am. Now, what am I to do, dear nonexistent readers? How can I get my brain cells to function properly again? I mean I am forgetting basic things and I often find myself searching for simple words and I often stop during the middle of the sentence scrambling for words needed to finish it. I am terrified to return to the adult world and engage in adult conversations and problem solving for adults are not as forgiving of the dumb as little kids are. For now, they think I am the best and the smartest thing alive in their little planet.