I’m not sure what makes a baby a good sleeper or a bad sleeper. Before having a baby I think I imagined that it had a lot to do with the parents, the environment, the routine, and other controllable factors that Mikey and I would certainly be able to manipulate in our favor. I was sure that our baby would be a sleeping champ. I love sleep. Mike loves sleep. Why woudn’t a baby with our genetic material not love sleep as well?
But now here we are, 6 months in, with a baby who quite clearly does not have any fondness for sleep. In fact, I think she resents it (and us, for making her do it). Despite our well-planned routine, which we fear to stray from so much that we are trapped in the house from 6pm on, Natalie just won’t play along. I think it is a reflection of her personality, which, so far, has proven to be independent, curious, stubborn, and active to the point of exhausting us just watching her go go go. All of that desire to be on the move–seeing, doing, touching, tasting, exploring–is in direct opposition to her need for sleep. Sleeping means she cannot play. Sleeping means no talking, rolling, kicking, punching, or creeping. It means she is not being read to or held close. Sleep gets in the way of seeing every item in the house and putting it in her mouth. Sleep is quite literally the last thing she would ever choose to do on her own.
So here we are. Sleepless. And running out of sanity. I hear other moms saying how lucky they are to have babies that sleep through the night and part of me is all, “Amazing! Tell me your secret!” and another jealous part of me is like, “Thanks for rubbing it in. Now shut it, please.” And I swear I am a nice person! But the sleeplessness does crazy things to my ability to feel anything but resentment towards those fortunate parents of babies who sleep.
Don’t get me wrong, I would not trade my happy, healthy, adventurous, endlessly fascinating and fascinated baby for any other baby on the planet. But a 6 hour stretch of sleep every now and then? Would be nice.
Here’s hoping that we’re getting closer to that point with each passing day. Thanks for listening to (er, reading) today’s rant. I promise a happier post soon!