So I am completely BUMMED OUT because the coffee addiction seems to have been a huge factor in all the sleepless nights. First of all, I was drinking it all day, into the late afternoon sometimes, so it made getting to sleep at bedtime difficult. But worst of all (and I officially let go of the guilt about this NOW) it was making it hard for Peter to sleep...it sucks when your mom is right all the time...
I am now engaging in new adventures in SLEEP. Bedtime prep for momma begins right after the boys go down. Sometimes I skip the night chores altogether. Greg and I are taking shifts at night when he's home so that each of us gets at least six hours uninterrupted. Peter is finally sleeping in longer stretches, and no more nursing at night. No more nursing during the day, either, come to that. Just morning when he wakes up (and its actually morning, not still the middle of the night) and at bedtime.
My house is a little messier, but my eyes look brighter. I haven't been able to get a post out this last week because I've been focusing on my health, and I am enjoying my kids on a level that I haven't since last summer. One week ago I was begging my doctor for anti-depressants. Today I don't think I need them, and its because I have been getting some real sleep.
I learned over the last two weeks that applying perfectionism to motherhood is dangerous and destructive. That I have to serve myself before I can serve others. Being sleep deprived caused me to do some wacky things- like lose the boys' antibiotics for 24 hours that they were taking for ear infections. I literally LOST THE BOTTLES. What killed me was I knew I had deliberately put them somewhere 'convenient' so that I would remember to give it to them in the morning. GAH! Finally found them in the dirty laundry basket. sheesh.
Some of the things I noticed about my kids these last two weeks....
Benjamin is now deliberately doing things to see where his boundaries are. He also deliberately does things to engage me in his playtime. Like repeatedly pushing his matchbox cars under the carseat of the baby we take care of a few days a week, while the baby is in it and sleeping peacefully. The cars would get stuck and Ben would scream because he couldn't get them, therefore getting my immediate attention as I did NOT want the little thing to wake up! He loves it when I get down on the floor with him and even if I just watch him play, he's happy. He's making this new face when he gets excited, an almost inhibited expression of joy that he seems reluctant to let others see. Its strange to me that he feels the need to hide.
Peter loves to play with wires. That's not really new, but now instead of just coming across them and being excited to shake them in his baby hands, he sees them from across the room and makes a beeline. He is now playing with the plug to the nebulizer we have for Mr. B. And I am letting him. Please don't call social services.
I also noticed that my relationship with Peter is so different than my relationship with Benjamin. I am profoundly in love with both boys, but its so interesting the way you love a second child-the way you love them just as much as your first baby, and a little different, too, because its a love especially designed between the two of you, like no other love in the world. There isn't one-size-fits-all love here.
ps. and by the way. We started putting on Cars 2 in Espanol to assuage guilt that Ben's watching it twice a day. Just another parenting tip from yours truly.