A Cruel Joke

Okay, you guys. Seriously. I am writing this from the edge of insanity.

L has decided that sleep is no longer necessary for her. She has, since right after her first birthday, been good about going to sleep on her own, in her bed, for naps and at bedtime. We lay her down awake, she goes to sleep, ba-da-bing. But for the last three days, she has been standing up in her crib and IMMEDIATELY starting to scream like she is being murdered. And today, it happened at naptime too. BA-DA-BOOM.

I took her to the doctor on Thursday last week because she was acting a little funny. Like, she was extra sleepy and extra clingy and the pediatrician told me that she has a virus (she has a few spots on her throat) but they did a rapid strep test and she was negative (THANK CHEESUS, because we just went through that…) and she hadn’t had a fever. But she had been sleeping fine at that point. Now, this starts. What IS this? Night terrors? The Terrible Twos? WHAT? Last night, after 40 minutes of trying to let her CIO, which I almost never do, I called the after-hours doctor on call and she told me to just let her keep screaming and that she would eventually go to sleep. Which I did. And she did. But I felt terrible. Worn down. Stressed out. Angry. I mean, first of all, who wants to hear their child scream for over an hour? Secondly, SERIOUSLY?! Isn’t that kind of MEAN? But I did it. And I did it again today when she was refusing to nap. And I made it exactly 61 minutes before I gave in so that I could FINALLY put Baby O down for his nap, and I went in and got her. And I told her to lie on the couch and stay there. And she did. She didn’t sleep. But she laid there quietly until I came and sat next to her. And now she is imitating me as I type this.

Have you guys ever experienced anything like this? What did you do? How do I make the shit stop? Because, I mean, I obviously can’t put drugs in her apple juice. Duh.

MB said to me today, “Just be strong. If you get her up now, she will never learn.” But I think he is an idiot. And I think his proximity to the blood curdling screaming may be making this a little easier for him to say.

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7 thoughts on “A Cruel Joke

  1. I hate to say, but mine gave up napping around that age too. I hated giving it up but it made the evening sleeping much better.

    My boys get night terrors and they typically go to sleep for about 2 hours and then wake up with blood curdling screams and are actually running around, but don’t remember any of it in the morning. If you suspect that is happening, you can go and stir them enough that it disrupts their sleep cycle about an hour and a half after they fall asleep.

    Kids are so fun.

  2. I have a three-year-old who still likes to nap in the afternoon and a five-year-old who kicked her afternoon nap at age two (much to her twin brother’s dismay- he still wanted to nap!) Some just like naps, some don’t. I definitely keep “quiet time” in their rooms every afternoon pretty much no matter what (and that includes my six-year-old.) Mama needs her down-time, you feeling me? I run them HARD when they’re awake, too. Literally. Run, bike, walk, hills. And worst case scenario, my sister the pediatrician always said that crying was good exercise… (Gosh, I sound like a terrible mother, don’t I? Ack!) Good luck! (This too shall pass.)

  3. Yup. Jonah too. Blood boiling, screaming till he chokes kind of fights at nap time. I let mine scream it out – I know – it’s harder to hear that (them) than anything in the world, I know. However? Recently I’ve been relenting just a touch. So if after an hour he’s still upset I take him out. He goes around a while talking and walking around. Then I try to put him down again and he’s agreeable. I don’t feel like he thinks he wins… Not so much anymore anyway. I feel like we are compromising? It’s working and at least he still naps – because I need those breaks – but I only have him. One. I do not, I do not know how you do it. I wish I was your neighbour. I would help.
    Have you had any issues with aggression with baby L? This what I’m battling with right now with Jonah. He’s a good sweet boy but sometimes he loses his shit and is prone to scratching and hitting, pulling hair too. I can’t get him to understand it’s not ok … Any thoughts? I hope it’s a stage and just a boy thing. Anyways. As far as nap time? Stay strong. But sometimes letting them out might calm them enough to realise that they need sleep. Sending you mommy juju and support!

  4. My rule of thumb is 3 times. So if Alex starts having trouble sleeping (always been a great sleeper), I will coddle 2 nights in a row. By 3rd night I try something different. This helps so we’re not creating a pattern that she will learn that crying gets her what she wants but we don’t do instant CIO since I know something must be wrong since this is not her norm. Most issues with sleeping last only a few days and then things go back to normal. She’s turning 2 tomorrow and we’ are currently going through a waking up in the middle of the night thing, 2 nights of 2 am wakeups, last night she was back to almost normal (just woke up early). Probably teething again or something – ugg!

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