I covet sleep. Had you told me when I was a 19-year-old college student that I would be getting up at 5 a.m. to be at work at 7 a.m., (while going to bed at midnight) I would have told you that you were absolutely out of your mind. But alas, this is my reality. I’ve actually learned to live on very little sleep. Until it catches up with me. Then watch out—I’m a cranky mom (and wife, daughter, co-worker, etc., etc.). The good news is that I have a fabulous husband who knows when I’ve hit the wall and tells me to lay down. If I’m not trying to be a martyr/hero, I usually take him up on it.
Here’s what I know (because I’ve read about it). We need sleep—and lots of it.
The National Sleep Foundation (you know it’s important if there’s a foundation about it, right?) says that adults need eight hours of sleep a night.
Eight hours of sleep.
Can I get an amen?
When I look back at my old posts, I can see exactly when the sleep deprivation began.
With this guy...
My precious little silly, rambunctious Eli.
Chris and I joke that we think we’ll be able to consistently sleep through the night in 2015. It’s good to have a goal.
Over the past four years we’ve gone through colic, night terrors and just plain old not wanting to sleep. We’ve prayed, read books, talked to his pediatrician, researched blogs and websites, but in the end, I think it’s just going to have to get better on its own. Don’t get me wrong, we’ve learned some tactics that definitely help, but I think he’s just a bad sleeper. He’s getting better, though—most nights we just have to get up with him 1-2 times. We can actually see the light at the end of the tunnel. This morning at about 4 a.m. he walked into our bedroom and whispered “mommy, tan I tet in your bed?” This is a HUGE improvement from lying in his bed screaming several times a night. And the night terrors are few and far between. They typically only happen when he’s had a very, very active day with no nap. For Eli, naps are good/over-stimulation is not.
Now that Eli is beginning to sleep better, I’m challenging myself to go to sleep earlier. Bedtime for C & E is designed to be at 8:30, but somehow it always turns into 9... 9:30... And then I feel like I’m missing out on life if I just fall asleep when I finally get in bed at 10/10:30 (though I’m usually so tired that I totally could). So I spend the next 2-3 hours talking to Chris, watching my DVR’d shows, reading blogs, catching up on Facebook and Twitter, etc. Obviously I love sleep, so I’m not sure why I choose media over it... but I do.
The experts say that apathy, slowed speech, flattened emotional responses, impaired memory and the inability to multitask or be novel are signs of sleep deprivation. If you spoke with me today, that’s exactly what you would find.
Starting tonight I’m shooting for 7 hours of uninterrupted sleep at least 5 times a week. That means drinking a little of this (sleepytime tea is my fave),
then going to sleep by 10:00 without turning on the TV, laptop or iPhone. I’ll let you know how it goes.