The Walking Dead
I’m a zombie. Not a flesh eating brain seeking zombie. I’m a Dad-Zombie. A Dadzie if you will. I blame Little Miss Junior and her hatred of all things sleep related. Yesterday was a travel day for me. I had a fairly important client meeting in downtown New York at 11am. Given that I live in Cambridge, that’s quite a commute, but I booked the 6am Acela train out of South Station arriving in Manhattan at 9:40am. In order to shower, shave, suit-up ala Barney Stinson, and make it to South Station for a 6am train, I have to be awake and functional around 4:30am in the morning. My return train is at 3pm getting back to Boston at 6:30… quite the day. Yes, that’s an early long day, but what does this have to do with parenting?
Well I’ve probably complained about LMJ’s aversion to sleep in this space before, but allow me to rant further on this topic. About 2-3 weeks ago LMJ actually started stretching her sleep routine out. Instead of waking every 90 minutes or so (yes, that’s right 90 minutes) she started going several hours at a time without waking up? Praise be! On a few nights she even had only 1 or two wake-ups. We’d do the bath, fresh clothes, bottle, bed routine around 7pm and she was making it to 6am with only 1 or 2 wakeups. This was a drastic improvement to her normal routine of 4-5 wakeups. Anyways, being the wise parents that we are, Red and I decided that it was time to move LMJ into her big sister’s room so we could reclaim our bedroom to ourselves. Fancy that. Novel idea.
Red and I have been taking 2 overnight shifts and trading… I got Monday, Tuesday… you got Wednesday, Thursday… It’s like an old war movie where the guys returning from the front lines have the thousand yard stare and crack jokes about the green troops heading off to do battle. Give em hell new guy! … and don’t forget your burp cloth! Here’s the catch, LMJ has to keep that good sleeping routine, or she will start to wake her big sister up, who by the way is an excellent sleeper in general. This made us a bit reactive to any noise she might make while in the same room with Little Miss. Now Little Miss Junior is a sly one, and somewhere over the first week of sharing a room with LM, she started to realize that any whine would be met with a parental response. Suddenly she’s waking up all night long again, and all our progress is out the window… not to mention that her big sister is now being woken up in the middle of the night.
So what do we do? Ok, big sister can sleep in our bed with the parent who is “on” that night, and LMJ will have to cry through some of her wakeups in the new room until she starts stretching out her sleep again. Yes, we use the cry it out method, it worked great for Little Miss, we believe in it, there it is. So on Sunday night, it’s my shift, and I’ve got a 4:30am wakeup call to prep for my train to NYC. Of course LMJ decides to plant her middle night wakeup for food at 3am… feeding and down again at 3:30am… I’m creeping back into our bed so as not to wake up big sister (Red is sleeping on the office futon as it’s her ‘night off’… ) As I stare at the clock it’s approaching 4am and now I’ve gotta be up in 30 minutes to prep for my trip. No point in sleeping, I’m out of bed at 4:19 and off to the shower/shave ritual.
Little Miss Junior is approaching 8 months old, and she is waging a war of attrition against sleep. I think she hates sheep and the sandman. She scoffs at rock-a-buy baby, and spits in the eye of twinkle twinkle. She is creating an army of parental zombies… starting with Red and myself. Don’t worry though, if you see me shambling dazedly in your direction, just give me a push. I’m likely to fall down and take a nap. My orders came through, I’ve got a furlough from the front lines for another 48 hours. Thank you sarge! I can’t wait to curl up on that office futon without the traumatizing sounds of the baby monitor just a few feet away… oh the baby monitor… ::shudders:: … Give em hell new guy! I mean… good luck Red. Get some sleep if you can.