I had an ‘ah ha’ moment in a psychologist appointment recently. Not immediately, it is one of those thoughts that has been eating away, burrowing under the skin and demanding to be worked out. It was a passing comment about Mr 4’s sleep that I agreed with and didn’t give another thought to until a few days later.
For those who are new here, Mr 4 isn’t a big fan of sleep. He fights it with a passion and fails to see it for the awesomesauce activity that it is. It is one of my biggest stress contributors. I thought it was simply because I wasn’t getting enough sleep. Sleep is one of the most important factors in maintaining good mental health and I am not getting nearly enough of it. It seems though that Mr 4’s sleep dodging has a completely different effect too.
I’m missing out on the much desired ‘me time’. It may sound selfish, but frankly I don’t care. A mum needs downtime to recharge, to be able to face the new day of challenges that having a child brings. If there is no recharge, I am constantly running on empty, trying to draw on emotional resources that simply aren’t there.
If I want to have alone time, I have to stay awake longer than Mr 4, who usually doesn’t go to sleep until after midnight. I spend most of the time that I do have to myself while he is at daycare catching up on sleep. Sometimes saying no to catch ups with friends to claim precious hours. I am losing myself to this.
I just want to be left alone. I just want 5 minutes to myself where I am not thinking about how tired I am, or catching up on sleep. I just want this to be better.
We hardly go anywhere anymore because I am tired. I don’t have the patience to deal with a head strong 4 year old in in public. I feel judged, seeing eyes staring at me where they probably don’t exist. My insecurities are amplified and I feel like a deer caught in headlights.
I feel stuck in this cycle. I let him sleep in to try and catch up on much needed sleep, daunted by the thought of having to try and entertain a tired 4 year old when my fuse is already at it’s end. He usually plays quietly in his room until he drifts off, but it’s not quite the same..I can’t switch off.
I’m wallowing, banging my head against a wall hoping things will just change. I keep going to bed and telling myself that tomorrow will be different, tomorrow will be the day that things will change but everyday I wake up feeling like shit. I know this needs work, I *know* what I need to do, but I’m in this hole and I’m tired.
Linking up with Jess for IBOT
Being tired does that. Sleep is your best friend. But gee he’s a bastard if you aren’t getting any.
Hope you get some quality zzzzz’s soon!
I am not Leanne without sleep … I am Leanderthol …. it’s not pretty.
Leanderthol made me giggle a little bit. I definitely get agro when there is no sleep in the house.
It’s not selfish, it’s normal (and necessary).
As for the judgemental eyes, for every pair judging, there’s a pair says’poor thing, that’s tough’ as they’ve been there themselves…
Hang in there, get help when you can (to sleep).
Thanks Lydia xx
Oh honey, wallow away! I have sooo been there (if I’m honest, I’m still just a little bit there right now), I live for the hours in the evening when the kids are in bed and I get quiet time. I sometimes even forbid the husband to speak during this time. It’s that important.
I hope things turn a corner for you soon xx
Paul gets annoyed when I switch off after Mr 4 finally goes to bed but I have had someone talking at me all day..I just need some quiet time!
Wow I would go absolutely nuts if my 4 year was regularly going to bed at midnight. I NEED that evening downtime! You poor things you must be exhausted, so must he! Is there a reason he doesn’t sleep? Can you tackle it somehow to get him into a sleep routine? I hope you can work it out! Hugs xx
We’ve been seeing a psychologist and there doesn’t seem to be any major issues that are preventing him from sleeping. He just doesn’t seem to like it.
Sleep is so important for my emotional well being too. I am barely able to string sentences together when I’m tired which makes me want to stay home. I hope the sleep improves in the near future for you all. We are in the process of dropping Dora’s day sleep (NOOO!!!!) because she will be up til 9-10pm if she has a decent sleep during the day. No day sleep = a tired grumpy preschooler from about 5pm – 7pm. It’s so hard! Thinking of you sister!
When Mr 4 first started dropping his day sleep it was a shock to the system too! I think maybe the 5-7 is just horrid all round for kids, no idea why!
I feel your pain lovely, and there is nothing wrong at all with wanting some you time while your children sleep. In fact I think it is imperative to our sanity to get such moments. Sending lots of fairy wishes and butterfly kisses your way. I have a nearly 13 year old who also believes that sleep is for the week so wise answers I can not give you
Thanks Rhianna, it’s frustrating when we don’t have the answers we need isn’t it xx
I think getting either some later in the night wind down time or some early morning “ME’ time is imperative. I don’t know how your son is coping at day-care with so little sleep either. I hope you can sort his sleep out, so you can give yourself the break you need, when you are not too tired to enjoy it.
I honestly have no idea how he copes either. He is on the go from the moment he wakes up.
Oh Tegan, I hear you. We have one who doesn’t believe sleep is necessary, and although he goes to bed much earlier than your little boy, some nights the constant fighting to make him sleep wears me out. I think we all need a ‘knock off’ time and when kids won’t sleep and let that happen for us, it’s more than a little frustrating.
Hope you can work out a way to get him to sleep earlier, and get some time to yourself as well. xxx
I’ve found that some nights I just have to step back and not stress because it doesn’t help the situation. No amount of yelling or getting frustrated will change that.
Gosh this is tough! No sleep is the enemy of humanity, not just mothers. Not falling asleep till after midnight? I’d be delirious if my boys were up that late. Does he get tired and cranky during the day? I hope that you find a balance and a solution to this problem soon, is there any close to you who can offer a night’s sleep over so you can get a break for just one night? might make the world of difference, sending happy sleeping thoughts to you and your little man xx
The frustrating/good thing is that he doesn’t seem to be tired. I do wonder though if it has been going on for so long (nearly 3 years) that I’m just used to the behaviour.
Oh man, I feel for you. Sleep deprivation is a form of torture.
Please don’t feel that it is selfish to want some me time. It is not only beneficial for you, but for Mr 4 as well. Remember you need to look after yourself first to be any bit of help to others.
I hope you can somehow get this sleeping thing sorted. It can’t be healthy for either of you.
I do worry about the long term effects it is having on Mr 4. I’m worried too about how he is going to adjust to school year as well.
Lack of sleep is indeed torture as is not having any time to yourself when you don’t have to worry about your child. Down time is crucial to help us function correctly. I really hope something changes soon lovely, it’s been going on for way too long 🙁 xx
Part of me is just hoping for that magic wand but I know that it’s going to take a lot of work from all of us to get things running smoothly.
oh hun that doesn’t sound awful at ALL! I LOVE the time I have after N goes to bed! I wish he’d sleep in so I could have a morning coffee in peace as well! I am lucky I get quite a lot of “me time” and I know without it I’d be up the creek without a paddle. I hope you get some answers soon, and some time for yourself. x Aroha (for #teamIBOT)
Thanks Aroha. We’re slowly working through things to try but have yet to hit on a solution that works.
Tegan, I wrote about lack of sleep on Monday, and it is without doubt torture!! I hope you’re able to get this sorted soon, it can easily take over your whole life. Thinking of you xx
Yep it is so easy to take over your life, and some much of our physical and mental health suffers when we don’t get enough sleep.
I really hope that you find a way to make it work soon. Regardless of my kids sleeping patterns, I find myself racing around all day on my ‘child free’ days, trying to get things done that I just couldn’t be bothered to with them and I feel like crap on those days. I really feel for you and wish there was a way I could help. You are often in my thoughts though, so please take some comfort in that.
I started to find I was trying to get too much done on those days too and so I made the commitment to myself to leave at least one of the days to only things that I want to do.
You poor love! To be honest it sounds like you are doing brilliantly considering how completely freaking horrendous it is when you’re not getting enough sleep. Pat yourself on the back for just getting through the day! Seriously, I mean that! Sending big hugs, Jen
Thank you for your kind words Jen xx
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