I'm a mom of three kids and I'm writing this post while sitting next to my 8 year old daughter. Actually, I am laying n her bed, in her room.
It's 9pm and she is still awake. She came to me about ten times to tell me thatshe can't sleep and that she's thirsty. She also came to give me a hug. And then to tell me that she loved me. And even to plan our day tomorrow while complaining about the cat. All the while as I was sitting on the rug in my son’s room next to his bed, because he, too, needs my presence as he’s falling
Some days I feel like I'm going insane and other days I'm telling myself that this is all temporary and that I'm totally going to miss it one day.
While I’m not exactly sure I'll miss this part, I can definitely tell you this:
After Shalev, my nine-year-old, was born, I was in heaven. A little weirded out at first by the whole situation now having this little baby next to me, yes. A little confused about my role in his life or his in mine, absolutely. But he was such an easy baby and I really enjoyed sleeping with him next to me.
It felt incredible. It felt like flying into a fluffy cloud.
I had a miscarriage before I got pregnant with Shalev so the pregnancy and everything that followed was such a gift.
I wanted to be a mom so badly that I didn't care about sleepless nights or achy nipples. I was really into having a baby. And even though he was an easy-going baby, he still woke up at least twice every night.
Then I got pregnant again with Zoe, my now 8-year-old, when Shalev was only 7 months old - and it wasn't as fun as my first pregnancy.
I didn't get sick or anything like that, but I was always very tired – especially with an infant to take care of day and night.
And then she arrived. All I can tell you is, what a difference in character (it’s amazing how different your kids are from one another)!
The first eight weeks of Zoe’s life, she only cried and screamed. I remember myself bouncing on the yoga ball day and night. She was wrapped close to me and we would bounce. Hours and hours of bouncing. Sleep didn't exist. After 8 weeks, it started to get better. Shalev was still pretty easy (I think by then he slept through the night) and Zoe was stuck to my
breast. It was the only thing that worked.
Third time’s a charm?
I got pregnant again when Zoe was nine months old. And I had Segev, now six-years-old, at my home about 41 weeks later.
Then life really shifted, making round two feel like a walk in
Segev was not the easiest of babies. He didn't sleep that well and I also had an almost three years old and an 18-month-old to entertain so Segev didn't really have much of a consistent schedule.
Long, restful sleep was something I accepted as part of my past, and learned to accept short bursts of sleep where I could get it. For two and a half years I slept with Segev and it worked well for him, but after nearly three years, I was ready to sleep
I figured I paid my dues – now it was time to rest.
Well, it took two and a half more years until I got good sleep. Even today, Segev wakes up some nights and still calls for me. But, he's my baby and will always will be, so I am always there for his needs. And now that Zoe is finally sleeping, I'm happy I
am next to her because she's obviously feeling safer and more comfortable to fall asleep with me by her side.
My bedtime routine is a little crazy, but it's okay, it is what
it needs to be
I get to do some work while sitting or lying next to my babies. They feel safe and loved and I feel good and productive.
You probably thought I was going to give you methods on how to get your baby or your kids to sleep, but I don't have any of them. I simply advise to do what works for you and try to enjoy it.
I still have to remind myself not to lose it when things get really intense and everybody wants me at the same time or comes to find me for another hug (for the tenth time), or begs for another chapter of the book.
But, really, do what works. And remember that sleeping like a baby means getting up several times throughout the night!
Feel free to share your bedtime routine, what works for you and what gives you or your kiddos comfort