Friday, February 28, 2014

Sleep deprivation is torture

Have you ever watched a movie where there was a terrorist involved, and the way they would break them down was to not let them sleep? Well I have had that for the last 2 years.  My child has not let me have a decent sleep schedule in 2 years! There have always been stretches when, for 3 nights she has slept like an angel and woken up all cuddly and well-rested, but those are, like I said, not the usual.
I have tried everything:
 - nightlight
- no nightlight
- rocking her
- sleeping in her bed
- sleeping on her floor
- big girl bed
- changed her diet
- letting her sleep half naked
- letting her stay up
- putting her to bed early
- feeding her at night
- giving her a bath
- giving her books in bed
- letting her cry it out
- going to the chiropractor to make sure she didn't have a pinched nerve
- taking her to the doctor to make sure she wasn't sick
- I did the ferber method
- co-sleep
- I have bought about 4 books and read thousands of comments, stories and tips on the Internet about what to do when your child won't sleep.

I have pushed this child around town in the middle of the night for hours, while she was wide awake looking at the stars; I have driven her around so she would fall asleep in the car, only to have her still be awake and clearly enjoying herself.  She has played Polly Pocket and watched Barbie at 3am because nothing else has helped.  At least then I could doze off on the couch.
And after all that and losing my mind several times, and crying because, after 3 days with very little sleep you eventually cry, I have come to realise that what my mother always threatened me with has finally come to pass:  I have a child just like me

I never slept well and I always wanted to be naked.  I was hypersensitive to everything too loud, too quiet, itchy tags in clothes or seams in socks, underwear and everything else that had a seam. I didn't want to be alone and always cried when you left me. I would cry when my mom went to work, when my sister combed my hair, if I didn't get my way or if I had just woken up.  Forget about washing my hair!  You would have thought somebody was trying to kill me.
It sounds to me like I had serious mental issues, but I grew out of it eventually.  I was just a huge pain in the ass and needed to be smacked, but my parents didn't smack me and I won't smack Mia, either.

There are days when I yell at Mia because I am so frustrated that she is tired and cranky and whines all day.  There also days when I just sit on the toilet to gather myself so I don't yell at her, or worse, smack her butt.
I have gotten right in her face and told her that I can't take it anymore and she just cries harder and tries to hug me. Yeah, like that doesn't melt your heart.  I keep telling myself that it's all a phase and that she will eventually grow out of it and I am just going to have to deal . . .  but it's hard.

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