Why, you may ask? It seems that we are smack in the middle (at least I hope it's the middle) of the dreaded 4 Month Wakeful/Sleep Regression/Whatever the f&@$ you want to call it. At the beginning of December we got quite spoiled with Elliot gracing us with long stretches of sleep - as long as almost 11 hours for a week straight. To say that we were thrilled would be an understatement. We were giddy and all "Hey, we got this parent to two kid thing!".
Well, apparently the parenting powers-that-be did not appreciate our cockiness and decided to throw a lovely wrench in the works.
The week before Christmas he started regressing. Instead of 11 hours he was down to 6, then 5, then 4... Last night he slept three hours and then was shouting from his crib. Unfortunately I didn't get to sleep until he had already bee sleeping for two of those hours, so I was less than thrilled about the wakeup. I nursed him and got him back down only to be woken up a couple hours later by more shouting. This time J went and got him settled. Two hours later, five minutes before my alarm was set to go off (5:45 AM) he was up again. I went and nursed him again and then brought him up to lounge in his seat in the bathroom while I attempted to get ready for work and make myself look slightly less exhausted.
Very chipper for the 5 o'clock hour.
I added up all the time that he slept last night and it was less than nine hours total. I know as a 4.5 month old that he needs more sleep than that. You would think he would be making up for it during the day with more/longer naps, but that hasn't been the case. All weekend the longest nap he took was an hour with most of them in the 40-45 minute range. The same was true last week when he was home with me for the holidays. The only day/night that was different was last Thursday when he had his 4 month appointment and shots which (thankfully) knocked him out. It's kind of sad that I was actually looking forward to those shots because I was hoping they would knock him out like that.
This is all new to us. Andrew never went through this. I remember when he was this age and reading about all the other moms going through this wakeful period. I couldn't relate because that period came and went with not even a blip on the radar. I thought it couldn't possibly be as bad as people were describing. Umm, yeah - any mom who went through this before please feel free to say "I told you so!".
We're back to the newborn exhaustion now, only it's worse. When he was (not) sleeping like this in the beginning at least I was on maternity leave and could just lay around and snuggle with him during the day (plus he napped a lot during the day). Now I am at work - sitting at my desk with burning eyes and a searing headache from lack of sleep.
I know I won't get much sympathy from people. I know there are plenty of parents out there that deal with sleep issues continually and not just during this lovely period. I sure as hell will not be complaining about any of this on facebook because the last thing I need is some soapbox speech from my sister, telling me that I should enjoy that extra time I get to spend with him. So that's why I'll complain here... and hope that the end is near and that soon we will at least be back to 6 hour stretches at night. It has to happen eventually, right???