Friday, July 10, 2009

cold turkey--a couple of days in my life

josh snapped few pics of some of the things i've got growing outside. love my bachelor buttons, but i'm bummed that only one plant made it. next year i'm going to skip the zinnias and do more african daisies. my cosmos are now as tall as the fence and i love how they've taken over a corner of the backyard! we've also got a LOT of tomatoes growing back there, soon to become ripe.

samuel is 5 weeks old today and just began smiling at me 2 days ago! people have asked if he has slept through the night yet, which is the last thing on my mind. no, he isn't sleeping through the night, which is fine by me as long as he goes right back to sleep after he eats, which he usually does. tristan didn't begin regularly sleeping through the night until he was 9 months old, and though i certainly hope that samuel won't follow in his brother's footsteps, i can't allow myself to expect it. tristan has actually had a lot of rough nights lately, sometimes waking up when samuel does, sometimes crying because of a bad dream. this morning he woke up at 3am for the day!! (lucky for me he was spending the night at gran & grandpa's house, but more on that later)

when you've been spoiled by having your dear husband around for the past 4 weeks, day in and day out, i've found it to be quite a shock to the system when he is gone for 2 whole days straight. josh's aunt "hired" him to paint her house for a couple of days and because she lives a 2 hour drive away, it made more sense for him to spend the night there instead of wasting gas by driving home and back. i knew it would be hard, but i really didn't let myself think about it too much. at first i said "no" to my in-law's offer of taking tristan for the night, but later realized how crazy i was, so i changed my mind.

it has been quite challenging. tristan is obviously not used to having only one parent around either, and yesterday began with a bang: samuel demanding his breakfast at 5am, and tristan waking up only minutes later. all tristan wanted to do was sit on my lap while i nursed the baby, and since that wasn't possible, many tears ensued, making it impossible for samuel to fall back asleep as i had hoped. it didn't take me long to enlist the help of the TV to babysit for me, while i got breakfast going in between frequently re-inserting samuel's pacifier.

i did manage to take the kids to the park, where tristan mostly sulked because i hadn't brought any sand toys, and then it was time for the best part of the day: nap time!! since tristan has been napping for about 2 hours nearly every day, i told myself that the first hour would be spent in cleaning up the mountain of dirty dishes in the kitchen. the second hour would be time for me to relax and hopefully nap a little bit. i had just finished up in the kitchen and samuel had finally just fallen asleep (a feat that is no longer easily accomplished) guessed it....tristan woke up after only one hour! he was cranky, disobedient, tired and weepy for the rest of the afternoon and i was so ready to hand him off to gran when she picked him up before dinner.

samuel, though still not a "fussy" baby, is no longer drifting off to sleep wherever he happens to find himself. this wouldn't be as much of an issue for me if i was able to put him down for a nap in his own room, away from the noise of his brother, but we don't have an air conditioning unit in his room and it is just too hot for him to sleep up there during the day. yesterday i pulled samuel's bassinet into tristan's room for two of his naps with the ac on and he napped great! but soon he'll grow out of his bassinet and then we're sort of stuck. he seems to get distracted by light and noise now, so falling asleep on the couch like he used to is becoming more difficult. i've spent a lot of time re-swaddling him, re-inserting the pacifier and shhhhing and patting like crazy. and then chances are once he's finally asleep, tristan will come bursting into the room doing his dinosaur imitation at which sam's eyes fly open, causing me to start all over again. if i just let him be, hoping he'll drift off on his own (which i've had to do many times) he does get quite cranky and fussy.

last night i fell asleep, exhausted at 9:30pm. it was a heavenly night. how did i used to think that having 1 child was difficult (i know it really WAS difficult, but it seemed quite simple last night) the baby woke up twice to eat, falling right back asleep each time. i never had to worry about his cries waking tristan up, i never had to keep an ear out for tristan's cries. i slept so soundly. i had to wake samuel up for the day at 7:45 so that we could get ready to go for coffee. i even managed to jump in the shower while samuel sat in his vibrating chair. tristan was brought back home at 9:15 and off we went to meet up with friends.

i knew that tristan had been awake since 3am, but i refused to allow what should have been an early nap to "ruin" my plans for coffee. tristan didn't want to play outside with the other kids; he basically stood next to me the whole time and looked as if he was sleeping with his eyes open. on the drive home, he chatted with me about his new love for davy crockett (or, as he says, "daby cockitt"). i asked him a question and, when i didn't hear a reply, i looked in the rear view mirror to discover that he was fast asleep, only seconds after chatting away. i kept talking to him, trying to rouse him, but it was no use...he was OUT. got home, brought a sleeping samuel inside, still in his car seat. managed to carry a very heavy tristan inside, take off his shoes and actually considered carrying him up the stairs before realizing that it would be impossible with my leg. so i gently woke him up and he immediately burst into tears demanding i carry him upstairs. meanwhile samuel, rudely awoken from his sleep by his crying brother, joined in with tears of his own. i picked up the baby and pulled/dragged tristan up the stairs, hauled him into his bed, read a couple of stories, which weren't easy to hear over samuel's cries, kissed him good night and left the room to get the baby back to sleep. i prayed so fervently that tristan would go to sleep easily, but just as i suspected, he began crying only a few minutes later, begging for his mommy. it seems that when he sleeps in the car, even if it is only for a few minutes, he has such a hard time taking his nap.

i finally got tristan settled, then got samuel asleep on the couch after soothing him for 20 minutes and just now i heard tristan starting to wake up (after only an hour of napping). i think its going to be another very long day. josh will be home tonight, but not before bedtime for the boys. i'd absolutely love to use my sling more, but i've found that wearing it causes my whiplash pain to flare up considerably. yes, i know that there are many of you out there who do this every day and probably think nothing of it, but this is my first time going cold turkey without josh being home and i have to say that so far it sucks.


Sara said...

Oh heidi, you are so funny. I have to tell you though I am so proud of you for going to coffee and not letting tristan decide your schedule! Good job!

Z-Mama said...

I feel for you, Heidi! But it will get better, I promise. Do you think you could switch the boys' rooms and put a fan on Tristan for his nap and that way you have the AC on baby Sam for all his naps?

Kathy said...

As I was reading, I remembered that EVERY time Lando would leave town, Steven's behavior would change for the worse. I would always forget this before Lando left and then remember as Steven's personality morphed once again. It seemed he REALLY needed his daddy. Wow.

It does get better. Steven can go for days, weeks, his whole honeymoon even, without his daddy just fine ;)

Shannon said...

it does suck. it does get better, or it gets easier to deal with it sucking. :)

Love and prayers during this time of adjusting.

I put a baby gate at the bottom of the stairs when Bradley is napping. Reminds everyone to stay away!!!

running wildly said...

Oh hunny, it is hard on your own. You are one brave chicka to do it in the first place. You're a great mama. Don't ever forget that!

Lori said...

Regarding the sling...I know that money doesn't grow on trees and I'm assuming that, like me, it would be difficult to drop 40 bucks on a sling. I'm thankful she gave me mine as a gift. However, if you can find 40 dollars to put toward it, I would HIGHLY recommend it. You can seriously use it for like 2 years and you'd love it. Also, the fabric "breathes" a lot which is wonderful! If you decide to get one and are having any trouble figuring out to wear it properly, I can show you in August.

Jennifer said...

I left you a long message on our other blog.
But Josh is back now and you made it through!
Yup, that's the way it can be sometimes.
Rough patches like that are temporary.
Hope a little rest is around the corner for you.

Ginny said...

I feel your pain all of these years later. When my kids were little Jon worked nights and slept days. Try keeping your boys reasonably quiet so daddy can sleep. Not fun. Hang in there.

Nicole said...

Now that Micah's hitting the two month mark, I find that the days of juggling two are getting a bit easier. I think Micah was right around the 5 week mark when I had that horrible week!! I too have had those thoughts like 'What on earth did I do with my time when I just had one?!'

lifewithwalden said...

I am so sorry. You are right. It does suck. I probably would have dreamt about putting a stamp on Tristan's rump, and mailing him to Canada. =) I totally get the whole sleep deprivation thing, and think I'd have dissolved into tears to deal with it with two children. Just think, when they are teens, they will actually love sleep and can get to sleep on their own! ( So comforting I know. Not. But this is what I try to think to make myself find some sort of humor when my son has kept me up all night long and then decided that the morning isn't for sleeping either.) We are trying the no cry sleep solution, but I'm thinking it would work best if I just mailed Jonathan to the author. There are some moments when I wish they made sleeping meds for babies.