Thursday, October 11, 2012

Problems in the Bedroom ???

Since my children were old enough to sleep through the night, I have had a pretty fantastic experience. Maya has just always been the type of kid who asked to go to nap if we forgot to put her down. She never cries at bedtime, and has always rolled over and went back to sleep if she woke up in the night. Aidan is the same way. We plop into bed, he smiles, waves and closes his eyes. We don't hear from him again until around 8 AM the next morning.  Now, I have always kind of taken pride in the fact that my kids were great sleepers. I know that it is not necessarily a reflection on me, but I always seem to use my children's successes as a benchmark for my success. Now that I think about it, that's pretty narcissistic but hey-I'm being honest here. But if I am going to take credit for the last three years of great sleeping habits, then I guess it's only fair that the last month has left me feeling like an epic fail in that area.

Maya won't sleep.

My little girl, who has never had ONE issue with sleeping is now a complete mess when it comes to bedtime. She will go to bed, but gets frantic as soon as I tuck her in. Begging me not to leave her, clinging to my neck, crying until she is out of breath and a complete disaster. I sit with her, pat her, talk to her, she is perfectly happy, calm, nearly asleep...but the moment I get up to leave her room it starts again. It is exhausting and emotionally horrific to go through. Last night we did this 12 times before she finally stayed in her bed.

I have gone through every school of thought on how to handle this. I have tried ignoring her, but honestly I can't. I have struggled with sleeping most of my life and I remember how desperately I needed to so my mother on those scary nights. I have tried comforting her with as much patience as a mom can muster at 3 in the morning when she has been in her daughter's bedroom 12 times in a row. I bought her a new night light, added some white noise, prayed for hours on no avail. Each time she wakes up in the night, it starts over. It destroys me.

I am not getting sleep. She is not getting sleep. We are walking disasters. But even more than that I think it bothers me that I feel so lost on what to do for her. I have reached the moment I feared most of becoming a parent. The moment when there doesn't seem to be a right answer. No quick fix on google, no product that solves it, no book that can explain it away. I feel like I have been exposed as the completely clueless adolescent that I am on the inside. I am not a super mom, I am not even a grown up. No, honestly, I want to lie in my bed and cry just like she does on these nights. She has found the chink in my armor. She now sees that not all things are in my control.

For the first time I can not calm her fears or solve her problem. I am failing her, and it hurts like crazy.


  1. Awww, sweet baby. She just needs that extra security right now for whatever reason. Put in the bed with you? Whatever gets the most people the most sleep is the best answer in my book!

  2. thanks Marny! I agree but I am scared if we start that we will never get her back in her bed lol

  3. Maybe this will sound "out there," but have you considered spiritual warfare? She is at a very sensitive age... maybe speak to a pastor?

  4. Nancy-not too "out there" for me :) I would be more inclined to think she was dealing with that if she were waking up scared-she is not scared and never claims to be. She just wants me to be close to her. That's what she repeats, over and over.

  5. Grace was a forever sleeper with me. She is 6 and still falls asleep with me and then I move her to her own bed. She can fall asleep on her own and has no problem sleeping alone in her own bed but who doesn't want someone to cuddle with?? I am glad that you have decided to cherish this time that she wants to be right next to her mama :) That won't last forever!