Thursday, April 16, 2015

Had it.... Lost it... Found it

The baby (who is 7 months old already!!) doesn't sleep for more than 2 hours at a time. This has been true for his entire (short) life. He once slept for 4 hours. I remember that one night in January. It hasn't happened since.

As if that wasn't tough enough, he's been sick for three days and waking up every 40-60 minutes stuffy and coughing and generally, infantly, pathetic. I'm so beyond tapped out that I may have hallucinated slapping a bee off of my leg yesterday, and even in my dreams (when I have them) I'm trying to fall asleep.

A few nights ago (or hours, who really knows at this point?) I read a blog article about "the one thing that changed parenting for me forever." When I read it I wanted immediately to share it here, if only to have it saved forever. And now I can't find it. And googling, "parenting blog life changed forever" only yields several millions of results.

Anyway, the point of the article was: a woman was struggling with a baby that was very fussy and kept her from doing housework and generally, getting life done. A friend of hers looked at her situation and suggested that she reframe it. Maybe the baby was her primary job, and the work she was doing could come second. (It seems elementary now that I type this out.)

And it's true. When Adam was tiny and had the screaming colic for 5 hours every night I knew and prepared for it. It wasn't a struggle for me because I could prepare for it. I set up snacks for myself, entertainment for myself, put on comfortable clothes and "did colic" every night for 5 hours.

Cut to today.... I looked at my daily schedule and noticed that everything that I do after 3:30pm has been a struggle lately. Clearing the kitchen table from toys... getting dinner ready.... occupying the 5 year old..... carrying around the baby...... And I spent the morning setting up the afternoon. I put dinner on the stove to simmer before 3pm. I had the house ready for playing and snuggling (i.e. vacuumed and straightened) and accepted that anything that wasn't done by 3pm wouldn't get done.

And it didn't. And I felt totally fine with that. By the time I got to 8pm and the bedtime routine, I was the calmest I've been in weeks. And as icing on this idealogue cake.... Adam fell asleep on the floor next to me as I was typing this. So even he is on-board with this plan.


Annie Crow said...

That is brilliant and must be remembered (should we have another child, that is, ahem). I'm so glad you remembered it and are putting it into place!

Ali K. said...

I'm so glad this is working for you! It sounds like a great new mindset.