Saturday, December 21, 2013

A Satisfactory End to a Frustrating Day

Today was a humdinger of a day. I say that in a First World Problems sense, of course. There aren't many days that go by that I don't remember how small my issues are. I mean, if being awakened in the middle of a sleep cycle by my child yelling at me from the other bedroom - because she woke frightened that we'd left her alone, as she often does - is the biggest annoyance of my day, then I'll probably be fine*. Sleep wake inertia, while inconvenient, is not the end of the world. But still, by the end of the working hours of this day, after Zinashi whined due to loose tooth distress the entire day and Elvie was a clingy Baby Godzilla (prompting the question, "Would it be worse to have a broken nose or a chipped tooth?"), plus we had run three errands, I was pretty unraveled. I looked like this:

Not pretty, I know. But I am fortunate to have a husband that comes home at night ready to take care of the kids if I need to get out, and so he did, and I did, and by the miracle of Thai iced tea and time alone at Target, I came home ready to get things done. The presents, until tonight still in their Amazon boxes in an unruly pile on the stairs, have all been wrapped.


*I am spectacularly unsympathetic when awakened abruptly, and I know this is unfair to Zinashi, especially when she's scared. I'm trying to be better, but it's hard to get my Good Parenting Cap on in moments when I probably couldn't tell you my own name if you asked. I want to do better at being kind to Zinashi when she wakes me, and not after I've had to spend a few moments composing myself. I have no idea how to make this happen, though, as my response is largely gut level, and my gut says, "Woman, you need a lot more sleep than you're getting." So maybe the answer is getting more sleep consistently? Tips are welcome; I would really like to improve in this area.


  1. No tips, only sympathy. I've been awake since about 3am ish my time and it's now just gone 9. Between my 2 they just kept me awake. One would wake, then settle, then the other would. I'm not going to be very good at this parenting thing today.

  2. I used to be involuntary demoness in the mornings too. And sometimes still can. But I realized if I stop snacking on sugary stuff before bed (which ... really... isn't that the ENTIRE PURPOSE of having hidden chocolate in the house!??!) it helped. Maybe its a food thing. Or not enough food at dinner thing? I don't know.Just thought I'd share and see if that leaves you any hints .Good luck!

  3. I know lots of folks trying to get kids to feel secure in their own rooms have had luck with the stuffed animals that make an interesting light pattern when hugged (I know there's a ladybug and I think a turtle may be involved?). It seems to make things a little less alone/scary for kids, so maybe that might be a thought for Zinashi. I also suspect you're right and you're not getting enough sleep - I know it's hard between Jarod's work schedule and the holidays and two young kids, but if that needs to be a priority so you can take care of yourself and take care of Zinashi, then you probably ought to make it one - set a bedtime for yourself and maybe even try to get a nap if you can. I suspect a few things may go undone, but perpetual exhaustion isn't really an answer either.

  4. The only tip I can offer is just that it's just hard to be woken up in the middle of the night--dealing with persistent traumatic nightmares is just hard, period. There might be ways to get you back to sleep quicker though. You probably already do this, but I'd suggest talking about the nightmares in the morning with Zinashi, normalizing her experience ("this is a normal part of healing from your experience, it's a way your brain is healing"), and asking her what helps most when she wakes from a nightmare that you're not there. Then maybe the next time she wakes you up with one, you can immediately do what she suggested, and that might make her feel listened to, and calm her quicker, and you can go back to bed faster.

  5. When this happens to me, I always try to resolve the issue as quickly as possible so we can all get back to sleep. This used to result in me leaving soiled diapers in the crib, if I even remembered to change the diaper. Now, it causes me to do things that utterly piss off my 2 year old, such as give her a kiss but no hug - how can I be so cruel? All of which ticks of the hubby who then has to get up and assist me with assisting the kiddos. Sigh. But there's no way to introduce logic into that state of being - can't post reminders and mantras don't come to mind.


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