Saturday, March 12, 2016

This Too Shall Pass: Thoughts on Sleeping (FINALLY)

If you’ve followed this blog for very long, you know that a common thread in the tapestry of our story has been sleep…or the lack thereof. 

Our story goes something like this:

Eli is born.

Eli is fussy, but sleeps all night with the exception of one feeding.

Eli finally sleeps through the night at 10 weeks.

Eli has no sleep problems...dun, dun, duh!!!

Mommy feels like a Rock Star.

Mommy starts new job when Eli is six months old.

Eli stops sleeping well.

Eli gets series of constant ear infections.

Eli stops sleeping all together.

Mommy tries every bit of parenting advice that she can find…nothing works.

Mommy gets depressed and doctor suggests co-sleeping.

Mommy does not like this and comes up with another plan.

Eli gets full-size bed instead.

Mommy goes to his room when he wakes up, sleeps, and goes back to her bed.

This works, so Mommy and Daddy have another baby.

Ellie is a decent sleeper, but not awesome.

Ellie and Eli gang up on Mommy and Daddy and both start getting up at all hours of the night.

Eli eventually starts sleeping.

Ellie does not.

Mommy nearly looses her mind, but doesn’t sleep train because it never worked with Eli.

Ellie finally starts sleeping.

Mommy feels like a new person!

So, obviously this is the nutshell version of what happened.  Between each line were tangled webs of depression brought on by sleep deprivation, failed attempts to sleep train,  doubts and fears about my mothering ability, desperate trips to specialists, and a slew of well-meaning but often offensive parenting advice.

We’ve finally turned a corner, and as I stand on the other side of total sleep deprivation, a few thoughts hit me.

          1. This is why there will only be two “Little Watsons.” 

2    2. This was not my fault.  Well, at least Eli’s sleeping.  We tried everything, and  I mean everything.  I could have done more for Ellie, but ya’ll, I didn’t have it in me to even try.

3     3. This too shall pass.”  Oh, how many times my grandmothers uttered those words.  They knew and they tried to tell me, but I was too exhausted to listen.
      4. Thank You Jesus!!!

Thank you for the rest that you have poured into our home. 

Thank you for hearing our cries. 

Thank you for forgiving the ugly words I muttered in my haze of desperation. 

Thank you for making sure that babies were born with the inability to preserve memories. 


Thank you for sustaining us through the nearly seven years of exhaustion that we endured.

Thank you for friends and family who watched the kids so that we could sleep. 

Thank you for a forgiving husband.

Thank you for a job with hours that allowed me to nap in the early days. 

Thank you for the kind words of wisdom so many shared with me along the way.

Thank you for bringing me to the other side.

My prayer is that this experience will allow me to encourage and pour into young moms who are exhausted and overwhelmed.  I’ve been there.  I understand.  You expected to be tired with a newborn, but three years, the exhaustion is too much. 

I get you.  And you know what?  THIS TOO SHALL PASS!!!

I promise.  One day you will stand on the other side, and you share your own battle scars with a rookie.  Welcome to the club we call motherhood, and don't forget that "This Too Shall Pass."

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