So much has happened in the last few months, I’m going to try to break it down into a few update posts. We’ve had our summer holiday, which went far too fast, and now K is back at work for the new year. T has grown so much in the last while, and there is a lot that has happened in his world so there’s a lot to share. I will start with a sleep update though, which is definitely a big one for all of us.
Although he was sleeping through pretty well from about 6-8 weeks old, we are unfortunately being paid back for that now. For the last year or so he has been known to wake anytime from 4am onwards, have some milk and go back to sleep until 6-7.30 (the later he wakes initially, the later he will doze after his milk). Anytime that he is sick or teething, he can wake anytime from midnight onwards – sometimes several times a night. The main problem is that this kid is such a slow teether. He is just now, at 22mths, working on his incisors. There are two peeking through now, and these have only just come through in the last week. He is so far behind other kids his age, and while it’s not a competition it does have a huge impact on his sleep and behaviour that we are so over.
The other issue with nighttime sleep is that he has nightmares, sometimes night terrors, and has developed a fear of the dark. Often when he wakes at night, I will rub his back a little then just sit in the chair while he stays in his cot and drifts back to sleep. When he’s had a nightmare, he is very clingy and takes a while to calm down. At these times he needs lots of snuggles and reassurance, and while it is a sweet time with such an active boy it can seem like forever in the dead of night. One such time about 2 weeks ago after he’d gone back to sleep in my arms he suddenly started mumbling and thrashing about. Within a few seconds he had his hand at my neck grabbing and pinching it so hard yet still staying asleep. He opened his eyes but he wasn’t awake, just a vacant stare, then slipped straight back into the same thing. There are times when there is a lot of thrashing about in his cot and we can hear him mumbling so it’s not an uncommon occurance but was quite freaky to have happening in my arms. I’ve asked him about it, and all he can say is “oh no, not nice, not nice” which pretty much sums it up! After a really bad run of nights, where he was waking up several times absolutely beside himself and refusing to be put back down, we tried using a night light in his room. This has made the world of difference, he still wakes in the night and we hear him stir but he is getting much better at resettling himself and going back to sleep. It is incredible how suddenly this fear has come on, for most of the summer he had been staying awake til late not being able to fall asleep until his room was completely dark and now that’s the worst thing. Not that there was any doubt about the fear of the dark, but it was confirmed when we forgot to take the nightlight with us to K’s parents and Sprocket woke up in the middle of the night. After being reassured and settled, I turned off the bedside light only to have him asking for “light please Mama, please Mama”.
So we’ve all been experiencing a bit of sleep deprivation, and gone are the days that we could bring him into our bed for some early morning snuggles and sleep. He gets so close to falling back asleep, and so do we, then it’s like he flips a switch and it’s all on. Jumping, opening the windows behind our bed, pulling our eyelids open, pretend snoring in our ears…it’s funny if you’re not exhausted lol.
We are at the point where although we’re wrecks after a sleepless night, when we do finally get a full nights sleep through to 6am (like we finally have this week – yay) our bodies don’t know how to process it and we still feel hungover!
To make matters more interesting, his daytime naps are becoming rarer and rarer. We moved his lunchtime up a little to make sure he wasn’t getting overtired and that does seem to have helped, but more often than not he doesn’t go to sleep at naptime anymore. Thankfully he is quite happy to have some quiet time in his cot, and by quiet time I mean chatting, yelling and bouncing up and down, for about an hour or so before he gets upset. Some days I am really struggling with this, especially when I have been up and down numerous times in the night, to both Sprocket and the dog, and really look forward to nap time myself. A few of his friends are doing the same thing too so it may be related to our hot summer or simply an age thing. We’re not giving up on naptime yet but I can see it transforming to quiet time sooner rather than later.
Speaking of his friends, the first of his friends has just turned 2 and we went to her party on the weekend which was a lot of fun. Even though his is still nearly two months away, his friends now have birthdays every two weeks until his – time is flying so fast. I know his 2 year old molars are a long way away still, but I’m really hoping that he at least has all his incisors by then and we can all get a bit of a break from the teething monster. And sleep, we definitely want sleep.