Monday, March 7, 2011

Manic Mondays

Sleep Deprivation

This last week had its up and downs for sure.

The biggest thing for me has been overcoming the sleep deprivation.

I like to sleep!

Need at least 8 hours of the stuff. (With no interruptions please and thank you)

I probably haven't had a good amount of restful, uninterrupted sleep since...hmmmmm..honestly I don't know when. There was so much happening in the last few months before we brought Ade home (not to mention the entire past year) that sleep was a precious commodity for me.

The days before we left for Ethiopia were busy getting last minute preparations ready. Honestly you would think after all the time we spent waiting we would be ready. But you would be wrong.

By the time we got into the car to go to the airport I was exhausted and emotional....cried all the way to the airport and through the security line-up. When we got to Toronto we thought we had lots of time between connections but soon found out in order to get our Visa for Dubai we had much running around and question asking to do. We weren't even sure until about 10 minutes before we boarded our flights we would be able to enter Dubai..so this left me in a restless state for the next 13 hours on the flight.

Then we landed in Ethiopia and the adrenaline took over....you are finally there. In the country where your son lives...hours from meeting the little boy whose photo you have been looking at for the last 18 months.

Right, without getting into Ethiopia (because that is a different post) sleep was not something that was going to come now for sure.

Every night going to sleep you think, what do I do if something happens to him in the night? I better check to make sure he is breathing? Was that noise he just made him choking? And so the sleep deprivation sets in deeper.

Coming home the jet lag is a killer. I know this of jet lag. Have experienced it many times but until you experience it with a kidlet it is something else. I mean if I have to sit up all night because I am on a different time zone so be it. Doing that whilst chasing a toddler is not so fun. We turned our time around fairly quickly...he did not.

So sleep deprivation had its hooks into me like Freddy Kruger's claws in someone in one of those horror flicks.

The first couple of weeks home I fought through the sleep deprivation because "This is what a mom does!" I was always on edge about putting him down for his nap because "Will he go down o.k.? Will he sleep for 2 hours?" "Will I be able to get the much needed house work done?"

The nights were even worse because he was still going down with a bottle at the time because of his schedule from the foster home and getting up 2 or 3 times a night to look for the bottle or to have a diaper change.

Then it was trying to plan a day full of activities to keep a toddler busy. This is not easy because he has quadruple the energy I do and in actual fact the one getting played out was me.

Then I got a cold....a bad cold that kept me up all night coughing.

Add this to the ever-growing debt in my sleep bank.

Finally, my body just said enough!

I can't take anymore...you have been redlining for too long. I will stop you. I will shut you down.

I can do it...just watch me.

My getting sick...it was the tip of the iceberg....like the first hit the Titanic took...it was just the beginning of the sinking.

13 comments:

Brendan and Mary said...

Oh sleep, how I miss thee!!! I hear you on this one, my friend and I function fairly well on five hours of sleep. The body can only take so much...I got a nasty flu when we came home too. Lovin' Manic Mondays...

Dancin' Momma said...

OMG the sleep issue, it is my biggest struggle still to this day. My mom told me that I will not feel well rested again until the kids move out. And I think she might be right. Loving the honesty :)

Shannon said...

Sleep deprivation is (for me) the most challenging part of parenting! I also really struggle when i get less than 8 hours a night. Hope you will soon be able to find a routine that works for you so that you can function. :) best parenting advice ever given to me: "It's amazing what you can do when you don't have a choice. " :)

boltupright said...

Sleep deprivation is hands down the worst thing when you first get home. I'll take temper tantrums over no sleep, thank you. The only thing that saved me was cartoons - he would watch, I would nap. I threw out all my preconceived ideas about how much TV was acceptable and refused to feel guilty about it.

Sharla said...

Sleep deprivation just compounds everything emotionally, physically, and mentally. I hope you are able to find a way to catch up here and there.

CinnamonOpus said...

What boltupright said.

Sleep? What means this "sleep"?

Carolyn said...

I agree with everyone on this one. It has been one of the hardest adjustments for me since Leul came home. As you know he gets up about 5-5:30 am and some days I can barely keep my eyes open! I now take my coffee through IV!

Carolyn

wholetthishappen said...

What Cinn said. Sleep? Who am I kidding, between the occasional Ativan, melatonin, ear plugs and an amazing husband I do get pretty good sleep. Just not lately. Sigh...

Keep the posts coming. Love them. Such freedom in writing it out and a bonus is having other mom's say 'Me Too!'

Katie said...

The lack of sleep is definitely one of the hardest parts about parenting. The only suggestion I have is to try not to worry about housework/chores, and instead rest when Ade is napping. For a long long time I napped with Owen in the afternoon because it was the only way I felt sane the rest of the day. Also it was a nice bonding opportunity to snuggle up in bed together in the middle of the afternoon (and you don't worry so much about checking on their breathing when they are right next to you!)

Hang in there!!!!

The Gaboury's said...

Hmmmmmmmmm........ Sleep.... I love my sleep, so that was also hard for us, but it will come back. I held Abi till he fell asleep for the first month or so because he was so scared to go to sleep. It seems like so much was a blur,the kids woke up around 4am for the first week, or so and so scared. We got home on a Saturday and my husband went back to work on Monday, that was butal for everyone.

P.s.Thanks for the comment on my blog.
Debbie.

Coleene said...

sleep deprivation is for me by far the most challenging part of parenting.
Forget about the house work and just sleep when Ade sleeps!! When he goes down for a nap - you take a nap too!!!
The house work will wait!!
I remember those first nights in Ethiopia when we would doze off and wake suddenly to check on Kaleb to see if he was still breathing!!!
I also remember the long flight home with my daughter and she did not sleep so I did not sleep.
I have been parenting now for 5 1/2 years and sleep deprivation continues to be a challenge!!
It gets easier when they start sleeping through the night but they don't understand "sleeping in on the weekend"
All my friends that have grown children tell me wait til they are teenagers and want to sleep all the time!! But by then you are so programmed to function with less sleep you can't sleep in anymore!!

Claudia said...

I was the same - ALREADY sleep deprived before we actually got to Ethiopia. DISASTER. Oh, how I do feel for you. Sending you an 'I get it!'

downes said...

Everything is better with adequate sleep. Not perfect, but better! You will sleep again, maybe never a solid, sound 8 hours that you need, but maybe enough to get you through and take the edge off!

Many have experienced what you are going through and kudos to you for talking about it publicly!

Maybe a book one day?