Last night was a rough one. Baby Bird is normally a decent sleeper but she seemed to be suffering from some indigestion last night. That meant little sleep for us.
So far in the whole parenting world, Papa Bird and I have been pretty successful managing the sleep deprivation. The “rough nights” are the ones where Baby Bird is obviously uncomfortable and there really is nothing I or anyone can do about it. And so the never ending pattern begins of: pick her up, pat her back, bounce her, rock her, get her to stop crying, then get her sleeping, place her back in her bassinet, wait a sec, still sleeping, crawl under the covers and try to get back to sleep. Meanwhile, just as I’m on the brink of sleep, I hear the rustling of her legs kicking and her arms flailing, then the hyperventilating, then back to square one - crying. I’m usually pretty patient with this cycle, especially as we have been through it a few times now, but last night I struggled a bit. This cycle went on for 4 hours right in the middle of the night. And it didn’t seem to matter what I did, nothing was helping.
Papa Bird, being the deep sleeper that he is, sleeps through absolutely everything. And as much as it sometimes drives me crazy, he has said from day 1, “If you need help with her, just wake me up because I’m not going to wake up on my own.” Easier said then done!
I’m not sure if other moms can relate, but I tell ya, asking for help is the HARDEST thing for me to do. When I psycho-analyzed it, I think what it comes down to for me is my perfectionist mentality that often creates the trouble. I see calming Baby Bird as my task and if I ask for help then I am “failing” the task. I REALLY struggle with this. And even though I recognize it, I still struggle with it.
So what do we do? Well, for starters, I communicate this realization to Papa Bird so that he understands my mental state when he wakes up to me bawling my eyes out at 4 in the morning. This was just the case last night. Papa Bird woke up and right away took Baby Bird and started to try to calm her and get her to sleep. It took a few tries but he was finally able to get her sleeping. He then crawled back into bed and all he said to me was, “I love you. Come here, you need a good cuddle.” He didn’t get upset at me for not waking him up and asking for help. He didn’t make me feel guilty about not being able to settle Baby Bird. He just offered me love and comfort when I was ridiculously sleep deprived and bordering on insanity. That, my friends, is true love.
We got through the night like we always do, but I am going to TRY to make a point of asking Papa Bird for help especially during these moments so I don’t get to this level of exhaustion. AND, the crazy thing is, this morning Papa Bird said to me, “I want you to ask me for my help when you need it because I really loved being able to help last night. I feel like I came through for you and Baby Bird and I even got some extra cuddle time with her this morning.” So if not for me, then I have to try to do it for him.
Summary: Rough nights happen. Ask for help. Communicate. Psycho-analyze. Self-reflect. Try to improve. Team effort.
- Mama Bird
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