i honestly don't believe in jinxes or fate or murphy's law or what have you. but i have to say that my dear son has pushed me to the brink of believing these things! tristan has had what i call "Sleep Issues" for the past (and only) 3 months of his life, which is really just a nice way of saying "why the @#$*) won't he @(*&^! go to *&#$@ sleep???!!!"
for awhile after his two month no-napping nightmare, i actually had him on a very nice routine. well, i and my mother did, as she helped out A LOT when she visited last month. for about 2 weeks he was consistantly napping for 2 hours three times a day and sleeping through the night for at least 8 hours. things were heavenly. the sun shone so cheery and bright, the birds sang lovely songs out my window and i had never laid eyes on anything sweeter or more angelic than my dear baby boy, sleeping soundly in his crib.
i should have known not to say anything to anyone about this. in fact, i kept quiet about it for quite awhile, but then april 1st came along and he was 3 months old and i decided to record my happiness in his baby journal. i wrote (and i quote word for word): "tristan has been napping very well during the day and sleeping all through the night for quite some time now. i believe that the hard part is behind us...things are so much easier now!"
you'd think that would have been enough, right? oh no, i was absolutely gleeful, so the same day in the nursery at church, while the other moms were lamenting at how their children rarely took naps, i cleared my throat and announced with much pride that my son takes three 2 hour naps a day...blah ...blah...blah....blah. oh, i was proud. i was so proud that, while watching those "bringing home the baby" shows, i would think to myself "uh oh, they're in trouble. if i were them, i'd know exactly what to do to get the baby to go to sleep" after all, i thought, it was SO SIMPLE!!!
well, the very next day was a monday. it was a monday i hope i never forget. i fell hard off of my little prideful throne as everything i had taught my son about sleep was violently chucked out the window. tristan decided that he no longer wanted to sleep angelicly in his crib. he decided that he'd rather cry. and cry he did. he cried for 2 days. josh and i eventually just drove him around in the car to attempt to lull him into sleep, but it was no use. nothing we did could silence him. eventually he'd fall into a fitfull sleep, only to awaken 30 minutes later grumpy and over-tired. i even tried reverse-jinxing it by putting him in his crib and saying aloud "hmmm...he probably will be up in a few minutes" but that sure didn't work!
tristan cried a whole lot, but i think i may have cried more. i felt that everything i had worked so hard towards in finally getting him on a routine had completely gone to waste. i felt that this would be the new normal and that i was doomed to months and months of sleep deprivation and earplug wearing. in the midst of my angst, i really felt so all alone. i emailed a few friends to ask for advice, but mostly i just wanted the comfort of knowing that others had gone through this and survived.
a few days later, things started to get a bit better. i can't say that tristan is back onto the heavenly routine of three 2 hour naps because that just isn't true. some days he'll decide to sleep for only 30-45 minutes at a time. other days he'll sleep for 2 1/2 hours at a time. what i have learned is that i can't expect him to fit perfectly into the little box of a routine that i've created for him. i've learned that those post-partum hormones are still alive and well inside of me. i've learned that i DON'T know a thing about babies and have no right to be proud of what works with mine. i've learned that every day is an adventure and that doesn't have to be a bad thing. but the most important lesson i've learned is: when my baby is doing great and sleeping 12 hours at night, trust me, i won't be telling ANYONE!