Wednesday, October 28, 2009

To sleep, perchance to (have a bad) dream

I've always maintained that the sleep deprivation is one of the hardest parts of parenthood. I personally need a lot of sleep. I soldiered through the nighttime feedings, napping during the day (sleep when the baby sleeps, dontchaknow) and generally living like a zombie. Until that fateful nine-month checkup, when I asked Boo's pediatrician about middle-of-the-night feedings.

She looked at me like I was nuts. "Do you need to eat in the middle of the night?" she asked.

"Umm, no," I replied.

"And neither does he," she said. She recommended the always-controversial Ferber method. We did it, it sucked, but it worked. My son now goes down at about 9 and is up around 7.

And then we entered the age of night terrors.

I'll be sound asleep and I hear the whimpering. Then it turns into screaming. Do we go in? Do we wait it out? Going in there often leads to picking him up. Which is freaky, because he's sound asleep and still screaming like he's on fire.

I used to have (and still do, to an extent) night fears. So I sympathize with my son, I really do. It's just that I can't do much for him when he's having one of his episodes. And as it turns out, feeling helpless is even worse than sleep deprivation when you're a mom.

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