Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Confession #22: Sleep WILL come

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Lianas first nap. Oct 5, 2010

When my daughter was born on October 5th 2010 (13 days after her due date), I was overwhelmed with joy, relief, and fatigue. The first night she slept 6 hours straight through, for which I was grateful. Little did I know that I wouldn’t enjoy that kind of sleep for the next 18 months.
Liana is a wonderful little girl. I have watched her grow from a smart, inquisitive infant to a smart inquisitive toddler who loves music, cheese, books and her parents. I would quickly say that God has blessed us with a wonderfully easy child, sleeping aside. Her ability to adapt well to change has allowed us to fly with her to Washington state, Hawaii and the Dominican Republic. She picked up on nursing perfectly, for which I was so excited. She started rolling over, sitting up, crawling, etc. way earlier than I had anticipated. As parents, my husband and I couldn’t be happier with the child that God brought us. Even with lack of sleep.

One year later, Liana still loved to nap on me. Oct 2011
It’s not like she was a vampire sleeper. From the moment we took her home from the hospital she knew that day was for playing and night was for sleeping. The only problem is that come midnight, 3 am and sometimes 5am, she would wake up and only fall back asleep if nursed or held. At first this, of course, wasn’t a problem at all. It was the story of most newborns. I wasn’t worried, overwhelmed, or concerned. I was just enjoying my baby. After 3 months, and no sleeping through the night, I was still not concerned. Months passed and the lack of sleep started taking its toll on me.

I should mention that since the day she was born I have been taking classes online trying to work on my BA (which I will finish in two months. WOOT WOOT).  Sometimes I find myself staying up way passed my “bedtime” trying to get homework done. Combine that with getting up three or four times a night and waking up around 6am, it can really start taking a toll on even the strongest of people (of which I am not one).  

So with that said, her first birthday came around and I found myself doing Google searches, checking out library books, and asking friends how to get my, otherwise perfect, daughter to soothe herself back to sleep. I tried many different things and nothing seemed to really work. I tried letting her cry it out; that was miserable for the whole family. We tried having my husband go in to her room in the middle of the night; that was miserable for the whole family. The list goes on. We figured until I am done with school, we really can’t do anything that will potentially make this situation worse for weeks on end. So we have just been living with interrupted sleep.

Liana can sleep anywhere.
Here she is sleeping on Jhonn
while visiting the Dominican Republic.
And then it happened. Last Saturday was a really busy one for me. I was getting picked up at 6am to go to Pleasanton for a Summit meeting for my MOPS group. Afterward, the ladies I traveled with went out to eat. By the time we got home is was nearly 4pm. My husband and daughter we off taking advantage of the sun by hiking. With the house all to myself I cleaned up a little and got ready for work. My first day back at work since coming back from the Dominican Republic. My family came home right as I was leaving for work. And by the time I got home from my shift, Liana was already fast asleep. It felt weird not seeing her for a whole day, but I knew it was only one day out of many. That night I fell asleep the moment my head hit the pillow (if not sooner).  At 3:45 am I woke up and realized I hadn’t heard Liana all night. So I went in to check on her. She was snoring soundly.  I went back to bed and woke up again at 5:30am. She was still snoring soundly. At 6:10am Liana came dancing into our room and was very excited to see my face. And I hers, even though I was still tired. She crawled into bed with us and slept another 40 minutes or so. I couldn’t believe it. My 18-month-old finally slept through the whole night! Does this mean I need to leave in order for my daughter to sleep? Man, I hope not.

Daddy reading her a book before bed
So that’s our story. Will it happen again? I am only praying it does. Let us hope that this is the start to a wonderful relationship between my daughter and sleep. Now if only I could learn to sleep through the night too….

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