Friday, February 5, 2010

The Sleep Files

I've decided, after much thought, that perhaps my post last week about William's lack of naps may have been a bit harsh.

Because here's the thing about William: 99.9% of the time he is the most fantastic sleeper you've ever met.

When we first brought him home from the hospital he woke only once per night to nurse and went right back to sleep. At five weeks old he was sleeping at least ten hours a night plus two or three naps during the day. At three years old he sleeps 11 hours a night and still takes a 3-hour nap -- on most days.

And when he's asleep, he's asleep. You'd have to make some pretty heavy racket to rock him out of his unconscious state.

When he does wake up he's happy to lie in bed for a while keeping warm and just generally being content. I remember when he was a baby there would be some days when I would forget to turn on the baby monitor only to find out later by wandering upstairs that he had been awake in his crib for some time just talking and singing to himself.

He's also fantastic at sleeping when we're away from home. Car, sleeping bag, floor or bed in the basement. He'll grab his shuteye wherever you put him.

But the problem with having a dream of a sleeper is that one generally fails to realize how good they've got it until they've got a child with the complete opposite sleeping habits.


Oh my darling Lucy.

On the rare occasion that William does wake in the middle of the night I race from my bedroom into his thinking that surely the roof must have caved in on top of him because he wakes for no other reason than total disaster.

But when I hear Lucy's cries from the bedroom next to mine I keep my eyes shut tight. I lie perfectly still. I clench my teeth and start chanting in a small whisper, "Please go back to sleep, please go back to sleep, please go back to sleep..."

And sometimes she does (PRAISE THE LORD!) but sometimes she doesn't. And when she doesn't you can count on a two-to-three-hour middle-of-the night party with Lucy girl.

That's where we were last night.

So I'm looking back at my post about naps from last week and I'm thinking, you know what? I'd gladly exchange a missed nap here and there if I could just get back shuteye between the 1:00 a.m. and 4:00 a.m. hours.

So what say you kiddies? Do we have a deal?

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