Monday, November 18, 2013

On Sleeping…Or Not

This past Friday I spent a lovely day at my friend Meg's house. However, sometime around dinner Lila started telling me over and over again that she was really cold. Lila is never cold. People used to give me funny looks when I would bring her places in the fall/winter without a coat as a toddler. The girl radiates heat. I used to incessantly take her temperature when she was really little because I would snuggle with her and be sure she had a fever. Therefore, for her to be cold for more than five minutes is odd. And then she didn't eat one of her favorite dinners of chicken nuggets and sweet potato fries, and I knew something was up.

Meg took her temperature, and being that she had a slight fever we headed home after dinner.

I am not a rush to the doctor type of parent, and Seth is even less inclined to take himself or our children to the doctor for anything. She had no other symptoms for most of the weekend and her fever never really got worse. She was just sort of dragging and grumpy with a low grade fever.

I suppose this is the kind of sick you want your kid to get. We have been very lucky in the realm of sicknesses in our house. Since Lila's baby days of me taking her temperature all the time (which I finally stopped doing around age two) I can count on one hand how many times I have used the thermometer. My kids never puke. I mean really never. There have been some bouts with coughing, lots of snot and sneezing, and a few terrible diaper incidents. That's about it. We are grateful.

I believe that in parenting one good fortune is often matched with a not so good fortune.

My kids aren't great sleepers. It happens. Seth and I do shockingly well on minimal sleep because our bodies seem trained for it now. That and we are heavily caffeinated people. Lila slept great as a baby, but she stopped napping not long after Evie was born. Evie has always had an aversion to sleep. So one might say we haven't slept well in two and half years.

Again, our kids rarely get really sick. We are grateful.

The thing is, when they do get sick the sleeping portion of life takes a rapid and intense downward spiral.

Here is a rundown of our night last night:

*SIDE NOTE - To add insult to injury Seth and I stay up entirely too late. We are working on it.

11:30 pm - Lila wakes up to go to the bathroom and we go to bed.

11:45 pm - 12:15 am - Lila randomly calls out in her sleep. This is that time during feeling bad where you can't get to the good sleep so you toss and turn and hate life.

12:15 am - Seth says that if Lila keeps randomly waking up he will go sleep in her bed and she can sleep with me. If all three of us sleep in the bed no one gets much sleep because Lila sleeps like all of these combined…

12:30 am - Lila walks into our room just as Seth has fallen asleep. I am still wide awake from the previous garbled frustrations emanating from Lila's room. She climbs in the bed in between us but refuses to get under the blankets. Do you know how hard it is to get comfortable under blankets when the person in the middle is on top of them???

12:45 am - I am not going to sleep. No one is. Seth gets up to go to Lila's room, but I stop him. He begins to protest that he's fine with sleeping in her tiny twin bed. However, I have spent the past thirty minutes not sleeping trying to figure out the best solution for everyone to get more sleep. This has become a science for me. It's like a challenge to see how I can configure things so that we all win. I give him this quick summary of how things are going down:

"You and Lila sleep in our bed, and I will sleep in Lila's bed. That way, when Evie wakes up at 5 am (per her usual) I can go grab her before she wakes you guys up (he starts to attempt to disagree with me but I keep talking). If I sleep in here with Lila and you don't wake up to Evie yelling for someone at 5am (per his usual) then Lila will wake up at 5am when I go get Evie and all will be MISERABLE."

With that I grab my pillow and head to Lila's room.

Do you want to know what happened? Lila woke Seth up a few times during the night but not for long. Evie let everyone sleep until SEVEN AM. I also believe that when one kid is having a tough time the other one subconsciously knows it and either helps or hurts the situation immensely. Lila and Seth woke up at almost 8am and Lila was late for school. But that doesn't matter. PEOPLE GOT SLEEP.

Sometimes the stars align. When this happens you thank the Heavens for small favors. OR, you pat yourself on the back for mastering the sleep science that is your family.


  1. Jana, your post really made me smile - maybe you didn't smile at the moment itself but it's a pretty good sketch of how life is going at your place. I can tell you honestly that my son wasn't a very good sleeper when he was a baby and got sick a few times as well. Because of my first son being such a cry baby, I refused to get pregnant a second time - ever. But then I got that itch again and guess what... I'm pregnant with our second baby boy now. :-)
    When I compare the movement in my belly - our son Jules was much more energetic than this baby. We're very curious to see what kind of little person and character we'll be having in April. ;-)
    I hope you're getting more sleep soon though! Hugs, Inge x

  2. one of my favorite infographics ever. We lucked out with an awesome sleeper (makes me nervous to have another) but when she is sick she wants to be held, upright while she sleeps. So I end up sleeping propped up with a tiny person wrapped around me. It works, but I don't always feel rested in the morning - and I don't know how will make it when she gets bigger.


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