I'm laying on the sofa, it's 4:21am. I've been awake since about 3am, awake around 1 or 2am, again earlier at about 10 or 11pm.
This fidgeting babe lies sleeping in my arms. "Sleep regression," I'm told. Every minute or two he jumps, his arms fling, he half-wakes, startled. I hold him closer, he relaxes and drifts back to dream land. That is not a typical result: usually he will cry, loud, piercing, irritating, roaring, awful distress. The only way to stop is by picking him up. Nothing else works. It never guarantees he will fall back to sleep again, but at least the horrid crying stops.
I really need to pee: having a coffee half an hour ago, out of rebellion and stubbornness, was, in fact, a really stupid idea.
I learned today, that when someone puts an official, studied, title to what you're experiencing, it can bring unbridled resentment. Fierce, bitter, resentment. Somehow that title, a simple word, makes you feel like your exhaustion is 'ok.' Normal. Nothing. Nill. Your lack of sleep for the last 6 weeks isn't anything to worry about. Naming your struggle makes the conversation end. It makes your cry for any help, for sympathy, get shut down. "Your suffering is not important because almost everyone goes through the same thing." Period.
I really have to pee, I have to risk waking him.
I laid him gently in his crib, tucked in, not too tight if that makes him wake, but maybe a little tight so he feels comforted so maybe it won't wake him, but maybe bring the covers not too far over his shoulders because he might get too hot and maybe wake because of that, and put a little cloth over his legs so he has a little more warmth there in case it's coldness that's waking him. Who knows what is waking him. Cover all your bases.
He is still asleep in his crib 10 minutes later. Maybe I can try for sleep now... He's going to wake as soon as I fall asleep.
Almost 5 am. Morning. I don't want to go to bed, I'm going to try sleep on the couch.
I couldn't sleep on the couch. I could feel every muscle in my upper body slowly tighten like elastic. I got back into bed. I don't know how long it took for our 7.5 month old to wake and sceam again. But he did. I am thankful that my husband picked him up this time. Thankful that it's a Sunday morning, not a weekday where he would already be at work, or left home for work.
I decided I didn't want to go to church. I was going to throw a tantrum if I needed to. I had it planned. "No. I'm not going to church today."
Eventually I woke up from my half-sleep doze, and found my husband and our Little right next to me. Little: wide awake. I sit up and feed him. Angry. How much sleep? Not even one straight hour?
I'm not going to church today. My decision still remains. I tell the household in my internal conversation. I'm festering inside. I have breakfast, listen as my husband gets himself and the boys ready for church. I get dressed too, eyebrows, mascara, bare minimum. I take a little longer brushing my hair. Defiant.
Exhausted. I know it's not just me, my husband is tired, too.
We went to church. I didn't throw my tantrum. It would have been a goodie (my imaginary tantrum), I would have won, it went down perfectly in my head.
It turns out I really needed to go to church today.
If you get the chance, do listen to this anointed message through Facebook.
Thank you, Lord! You are rest for the weary.