Sunday, January 9, 2011

Sleepless In Toronto

I'm sure you've all heard the stories about babies keeping you up all night. Well my baby girl has been far from trouble on this front...until two days ago. I'm not sure what sparked the all night marathon, but it wasn't pleasant and it put me in a foul mood the next day.

I received a text from my friend Dan on that fateful night, when reality and truth came raining down on me. Dan just had a baby girl on January 2nd 2011 (Congratulations Dan and Claudie!) and had written the text to me in sleepless desperation because since birth, his little girl has been routinely waking him up every 2 to 3 hours.

He wrote, "Have you been going delirious from lack of sleep yet? Or did you work through it. I found a new shade of purple under my eyes."

To which I replied, "Dude, I've been blessed. She sleeps for about 4 hours between feeding and then goes back to sleep. Some nights are worse than others..."

Now, I can honestly say I ate my words that night, for I received no more than 1 straight hour of sleep until 6am the next morning. It was hard, it was frustrating, and worst of all, it was sleepless.

So Dan, if you're reading this entry, I'll have you know that you're not alone. And although I'm blessed, I can no longer say it is due to any kind of beautiful sleep pattern that my baby has maintained. Sleep is wonderful, but at this point in time, it only occurs in bunches of 3 to 4 hours at best. If you'll notice the date stamp on this post and the picture I posted, you'll see that I wrote this entry way before any babyless person would write a blog entry on a Sunday morning. My head is aching and my eyes are bloodshot.

In conclusion, I'd like to add that despite having slept less than a few hours last night, and the night before, and the night before that, the ruthlessness of it all does come with some benefits...

Having a baby cry and fuss and then cry again is heartbreaking. It's especially heartbreaking when it's 2am and you know how crappy you're going to feel the next day if you don't get the baby to sleep so that you, in turn, can fall asleep.

This is where some of the benefits comes in. Still to this day I can't remember anything much more rewarding than having my crying baby girl curl up on my chest like a cute little bug and slowly quiet down until her whimpers are nothing more than soft breaths complimented by a sleepy stretch and a sigh of relief before she falls asleep.

It's very rewarding to have someone depend on you for comfort, warmth, love, and safety, and to then have the ability to provide all those things to her in matter of minutes and see that what you've been working for and losing sleep over has all come together to give you this one sleepy little babe on your chest. It's amazing, it's unlike anything else, and it makes all my sleepless nights in Toronto seem oh so worth it.

Good luck to all those out there who are kept awake by your crying babies...and remember not to miss out on the little rewards that come with having a baby wake you up in the night looking for comfort, food, and a little love.