If you have a sleepless infant, stop reading now. Seriously. This isn’t going to be encouraging for you.
She’s 3. Except for a few brief weeks when she was 3 months old, she has been a notoriously horrible sleeper. She was 2 before she started sleeping through the night at all. She was 3 before she was doing it with any sort of consistency, and by “consistency” I mean a few nights a week – not all of them.
You know what is consistent? A few things.
- Sunday nights. She is going to wake up at least twice on Sunday night. Is it because the weekend has a different routine than the weekdays? Is it because she’s had 2 days with me and she knows we go back to Grandmother’s/work on Monday? Probably both things.
- Exhaustion. The more tired she is, the worse she sleeps. It takes longer to get her to sleep and she wakes up over and over, usually with nightmares about things in her bed. It is very hard to break this cycle, and it leads to whining (which feels like it sucks the life force right out of me every time I hear that grating voice).
- Milestones. Her milestones, seen and unseen, have always been a source of nightwaking and now it seems that Luke’s milestones are also a source of nightwaking – for her. I can mark on the calendar when she’s going to have a rough couple of weeks of sleep – December and June, her birthday and half-birthday months. Sometimes, we even get some quarterly disturbance in March and October, though, blessedly, these phases have lessened as she’s gotten older.
- Change. Vacation, the start of school, new sibling, new cousin, rearranging of furniture – all of these things disrupt her sleep. When we rearranged her bedroom to fit more furniture in there for Luke, her sleep was disturbed for a week.
- Illness. This one is obvious and expected, but still, consistent.
Why am I writing this? I don’t know.