Listening and Trusting

When my daughter turned one I thought our sleep issues were  behind us.  She slept through the night on her birthday and continued to do so for a few days following.  Then some time in the last few weeks things began to fall apart again.  She started waking once, then twice and is often up for hours in the night.

My son was a horrible sleeper too, but only for the first few months of his life. He slept through consistently from 10 months on, but my daughter is different.  She’s extremely attached to me and soooo inconsistent.  What works one day doesn’t work the next.

I think the hardest part in this whole sleep thing is not so much the exhaustion (and that shit is brutal) but the constant questioning.  Constantly trying and wondering: What am I doing wrong?  I’m always thinking of ways to ‘fix’ it and that in itself is exhausting.

Yesterday I picked up a book I haven’t looked at in a while – Healthy Sleep Habits Healthy Child – and became convinced that I needed to do something (again) about our situation.  I decided I needed to just let her cry.

And so last night I did just that.  And she cried.  And she cried.  And she cried.  After half an hour I was so agitated.  My stomach was in knots and I could feel the stress seeping out of  my pores.  After an hour I started to feel sick.  And angry.  And annoyed.  And sad.  I questioned my decision but didn’t want to go in and “teach” her to cry for an hour.  After 1.5 hours I couldn’t stand it any longer and I went in and nursed her to sleep.

Now, just so you don’t think I’m  totally heartless, she wasn’t scream crying the whole time.  It was a lot of protest crying and it was kind of on and off.

Today is another day and I don’t want to do that again tonight.  But I don’t know what to do.  And so I meditated on it, because at the end of the day, no matter what the books say, I need to do what feels right for me.  And last night did not feel anything close to right.

After I put her down for her nap I sat on my bedroom floor.  I closed my eyes and took five deep breaths.  I then posed the question: How can I get my baby to sleep better at night?

And I listened. And this is what I heard:

Go to her.

Comfort her.

This phase may be extremely difficult but it will not last.  She will eventually sleep through.

I will not be breastfeeding her forever.  For not much longer in fact, so relax into these final late night nursings.

She is my last baby.

And she is growing so fast.

I opened my eyes and felt my eyes well up.

Yes, I’m tired.  I’m also confused and conflicted.  The books tell me that I am not helping her by nursing her in the night.  Her paediatrician suggested sleep training.  My husband wants me to let her cry.

But my heart tells me otherwise.  And as a mother I trust that more than anything else.

At least I’m trying to.






A Little Birthday Tradition for my Kids

My baby girl turned one yesterday!!!!  We had a such a great day and I only had one, ok maybe two, emotional moments.

Ahhhh one years old.

Longest and yet shortest year ever.

Also, she slept through the night last night.  After a few weeks (months?) of pure torturous sleep, we all finally slept.  Yes, I slept too.

So all I need to do is throw a party, change her sheets, run the humidifier in her room, and let her take only one nap – every day.

For real though, we are now on a one nap schedule.  Hopefully this fixes all of our sleep problems.

And so yes ,she’s one now and we had such a perfect day celebrating her.  The house was full with family (so many cousins) and friends.  She devoured her cake. Oh man, that girl went. to. town.  Made me a proud mamma haha.

Before I went to bed I wrote her a letter, as I’ve done for my son on his birthdays.  I wrote to tell her how much she is loved and how truly amazing she is.  I also wrote her things like where her dad works, what our days look like, what her favourite foods are and things like that.  On her 18th birthday I’ll give her the box of letters.  I hope it gives her some insight into what she was like at each age growing up, what our (me and my husband and our family in general) lives were like and most of all, how much she is loved.

That girl is so loved.

Happy birthday sweet baby girl.

Losing my Mind and Sleep Log Day Three

Has it only been three days?  Time does a funny thing when you are severely sleep deprived.  Did you hear about our night last night?  If not, check it out, it was a fun one.

I’ve kind of been losing my mind lately.  OK, not kind of and I have been for a little while.  All joking aside, all is not well.  I know it’s partially, if not entirely, due to two things:

  1. Our sleep situation.
  2. Winter in Canada.

Yesterday was an especially trying day. My husband called in sick so that he could help me out (so grateful for that) so I decided to go write my drivers license test.  My license expired some time ago and it’s been on my to do list for ever and my husband gives me such a hard time about not having it that I thought, kind of as a favour to him, that I would just go do it.

Have I mentioned how sleep deprived I am?

Writing the test was SUCH A BAD IDEA.  Not only was I extremely tired, but I hadn’t studied.  I flipped through the manual while waiting and none of it was sinking in.  It was like I was looking at it through a foggy window.

So this test, not so common sense.  It asked things like ‘how close to a fire hydrant can you legally park’ and ‘how many demerit points can you accrue before your license is suspended’.  I was sitting there mumbling to myself ‘I don’t fucking know’.

Needless to say, I failed.

But the good thing is you can do it over, right away.  So hells yea I was doing it over, I made it all the way out there I was getting this done.

Second time around I was presented with a new variety of ‘I don’t fucking know’ questions.

I failed again.

Guys, I cried.  I’m that fucking tired that I cried.  I have never, and I mean ever, in my life failed a test.  It’s not that I’m a nerd (ok maybe a little) but I ALWAYS show up prepared.

Or I used to.

I am so off balance. I feel so far from the person that I used to be.  My husband thinks it’s a good thing I failed, kind of like a wake up call.  I need to take care of myself.  I need to tend to my needs and find my footing again.

I also really need to get my fucking license.


I’m writing this at 2:30pm and my daughter is babbling in her crib, not sleeping.  At least she’s not crying.  So here we are, day 3:


6:30 up for the day – she would have slept longer but her brother woke up the whole house with his screaming, I think the poor guy had a night terror
9:15-10:40 morning nap.  Cried for 10 minutes, babbled fora bit more then fell asleep.
2:10 laid her down for a nap, cried a little but mostly babbled
7:30 pm asleep. She started scream crying while in my arms before I even laid her down. Once in her crib she cried for 5 minutes then fell asleep
11:10 pm woke up and cried out on and off for 20 minutes, was hoping she’d get back to sleep on her own..but nope, I went in at 11:30 and laid her back down at 11:45
(I then tossed and turned for quite a while…)
5:40 work up, tried to get her back to sleep but she was not having it so we officially started our day at 6 am


  • Total sleep = 12.5 hours
  • nursed her 4 or 5 times
  • went outside this afternoon after lunch <- kind of a big deal ’round here
  • ate a big dinner and had a nice bath but she was emotional at the end of the day (she tried to stick her finger in a socket and my husband gave her a very stern ‘no’ and she lost it, never recovered)
  • really only one wake up and a quick one, so not bad all things considered
  • I realize she’s going through some pretty bad separation anxiety right now, that and perhaps in the middle of Leap 8 of the Wonder Weeks – I didn’t follow this with my son, but she seems to be right on track with that whole thing, displaying all of the behaviours listed…perhaps this means there’s a natural end in sight coming in the next week or two?

Acceptance and Surrender

I read something yesterday that really resonated with me.  It went:

“Acceptance is surrendering to what is: our circumstances, our feelings, our problems, our financial status, our work, our health, our relationships with other people, the delay of our dreams….What happens when we accept our circumstances? Well, first of all, we relax.  Next we change our vibration, our energy pattern, and the rate of our heartbeat.  Once again we’re able to tap into the boundless positive energy of the universe.  Acceptance also illuminates reality so that we’re better able to see the next step.”

It’s from the book Simple Abundance and this message really could not have come at a better time.

Yes, I’m talking once again about my baby girl’s sleep.  But more than that really.  It’s about this season of my life.  This time in my life as a mother, a wife, a woman.

What if I just accepted that she’s a bad sleeper right now?  That she’s going through a phase that will eventually end.  What if I surrender to trying to fix it and just hold her.  Just bring her to bed with me as I did the last two nights.  Sure, I lose some sleep and yes, the lack of sleep is making me a little crazy, but perhaps it’s more my perception of the problem, my desire to control the situation that’s making me crazy.

Is it the lack of sleep that’s making me angry/emotional/impatient or is it the way I’m handling the situation?  Perhaps if I just accept and surrender to what is I will, like she says, relax and make it through this rough patch.

This is me talking myself out of letting her cry by the way.

I am going to try this though.  To accept, surrender, and find the positive in comforting her when she cries at night.   I’m going to accept that she’s not on a consistent napping schedule and let go of any expectations…as long as she’s happy.

That’s not to say I’m not going to keep trying to find ways to help her sleep.  And so I’m continuing the sleep log in the hopes of uncovering a pattern.


7 am – up for the day
9:40 – 10:55 napped. nursed to sleep for her nap, no crying
6:30 laid her in her crib awake, cried right away
6:40 alseep
2:20 she woke. I went in and nursed her and laid her back down at 2:50 – and then everything fell apart.  She cried an I only let her cry for 10 minutes (in the name of ‘acceptance and surrender’) and I brought her into bed with. k She flopped around and smacked my face and gave me kisses and at 3:45 I put her back into her crib. She cried until 4:30 when I went in and brought her into bed again.  She fell asleep at 5.  THAT’S TWO AND A HALF HOURS OF AWAKE TIME IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT.  Not cool.
6:30 am We are both startled awake by a screaming 3 year old.  Yes, my screaming 3 year old.  Just can’t catch a break here.

Worst. Night. Ever.  Well, not ever.  The newborn/6 week phase is pretty bad, but this is just unacceptable.


  • Total sleep = roughly 10 hours
  • change in routine first thing this morning. husband was home and took her right away so no milk at 7 am, but she had just nursed at 5:30. perhaps the change/new stimulus helped with the morning nap?
  • only nursed her 4 times in the day
  • I was out most of the afternoon, she spent this time with her dad
  • didn’t get outside at all today – was freezing rain all day
  • spent more time than usual in her room before bed (went up at 5:45)
  • put her to bed for the night without her sleep sack, fleece pjs only
  • no bath


Sleep Training…Again?

It’s 2:30 am and I am currently listening to my one year old cry.  She’s been awake for over an hour and is refusing to go back to sleep.  I am so fucking tired and sick of this.

I don’t get it.  She falls asleep on her own at the start of the night, most nights she goes down without much fuss, some nights she cries for up to 20 minutes.  This is supposed to stop or at least help the night wakings.  It did with our son.  She just doesn’t get it and I am so done.

I mentioned in my last post that my husband wants to help out more.  I think starting tomorrow he can be the one to do her bedtime routine.  I’ll put our son to bed.  And if she wakes in the night I’ll go to her but not nurse her, just tell her, ‘it’s time to sleep’.  She’s one, she doesn’t need to be fed at night.  And it doesn’t even help anyways.  I nursed her tonight and she cried out a couple of minutes after I laid her down.

I’m so tired.

Last night she was up three times.

Last week she slept through the night two times. So I know she can do it.

She’s not sick. She’s not teething.  I don’t know what’s going on.  Separation anxiety maybe? Whatever it is I need it to stop.  I had no problem going in and giving her a quick nurse and a cuddle, but I just can’t anymore.

I’m sorry baby girl, you have to figure this out.

And please do it soon, I’m so tired it’s making me sick.

While the Baby Naps

Last night was rough.  My seven month old is not only teething – she now has two little buds on the bottom – but she has caught her brothers cold who caught it from daycare.  Yup, five days into daycare and he has a cold.  So yeah, she was up a lot.  As in every two hours.

I’m a little tired today.

But now that her brother is in daycare, I can actually rest while she naps.  Ideally I would sleep, but that doesn’t always happen.

Like she’s napping now.  I put her down at 9:30 and I went right to bed.  I waited for sleep to find me for 45 minutes after which I gave up, went downstairs and made a coffee.

And here I am now, writing this and drinking a coffee when I really would much rather be sleeping.

And she’s awake.  So at least I got to rest.  Perhaps sleep will come this afternoon.


Sleep Training – Day 2

So first off, last night she slept for 9 hours straight which was pretty awesome. Wish I could say I slept as well.  I went to bed feeling very stressed out and I woke every 2 hours.  And then my son was making crazy noises in his room from 4-5.  Then of course just when he fell asleep she woke up. I couldn’t get her back down so I brought her into bed with me and we both slept in till 8.  It was pretty great.

Then she napped from 11 – 12:20 but man did she ever fight that nap.  Took me about 45 minutes to get her down.  And then I couldn’t get her down for an afternoon nap.

Tonight went well.  At 6:00 she was exhausted so I gave her a bath after a very messy avocado and banana dinner and then nursed her in my bed.  We then went into her room for pjs, sleep sack, book, song then bed.  She was very confused – rightly so.  She kept trying to get her body into the nursing position and she was bobbing her head against my chest.  To her nursing = sleep and she was ready to sleep.

I lay her down at around 6:45 wide awake and she cried and cried.  I then went into my sons room where my husband was reading him bedtime stories and cuddled in there for 10 minutes.  I went back in and picked her up (not really supposed to do that but whatever) and bounced her for a little bit.  I put her back down and she again cried and I set my timer for 13 minutes.  I spent that time nervously cleaning the kitchen.  And I poured myself a big glass of wine.  At the 13 minute mark I went to go back in and she was just kind of whimpering (so sad, I know) so I waited outside her door.  When she started up again I went in and again picked her up and bounced her a little.  When I laid her back down this time she didn’t stir so I thought maybe I had bounced her to sleep (oops) but low and behold she started crying again.  This time for maybe 2 minutes and then she was out.

So day two was a total of 25 minutes of crying.  Not so bad really.

I’m going to have to figure out something for her naps.  I think once we sort out this night sleep I’m going to have to tackle her naps.  She just won’t let me lay her down once she’s asleep!