Sleepless nights and school-less mornings.

Willow was a great sleeper until a few months ago. She would go to bed at 7:30pm and would wake at 6am. That was ample sleep for her and enough sleep for us as parents, we couldn’t fault her when it came to sleeping.
I cut out day napping relatively early on, I realised she didn’t need to nap when it would often be more of a struggle to relax her and get her off than it was to let her continue playing.
It certainly went in my favour because she went to bed tired, slept and then woke the following morning fresh as a daisy.

Back in the summer of 2014 Willow became tall enough to open her own bedroom door and with the alteration of her cot into a toddler bed she had free roam.
It’s not unknown that during the summer the nights are brighter for longer and the mornings are brighter earlier. Willow wasn’t keen on this at all, she has always had a dark room. When the nights were brighter and the mornings sunnier, Willow naturally thought that it wasn’t bedtime.
At our normal bedtime hour Willow would be frustrated because she wanted to continue playing and the light in her room was obnoxious, we have a south facing house and both our windows for our bedrooms face that way, the sun beats down on our house from dawn until dusk, we can’t escape it. We tried to install a blind In Willows bedroom but it still let in more light than we wanted, it was still to light for her to sleep. Back when the nights were lighter, Willow got into the habit of waking very early, 4am most days. Since then we have seen a dramatic change in her sleeping routine, she wakes up at least twice a night now and is more often awake for the day by 6:30am
During the night, she comes into our room and tries to get into bed with us, we take her back to bed and cuddle her in again but she will wake again in another couple of hours.
Between KaboodleDad and I, we’re up and down most nights, but I’ve realised that she has her daddy up a lot more than she gets me up. Dads side of the bed is closest to the door and more often than not he is Willows first port of call. Sometimes dad would’ve taken her back to bed and an hour later she will come back into our room and avoid going to him, instead she will come to me and I will repeat what her dad has already done.

We both feel tired, but I dread to think how tired my Kaboodle man is, he works hard each day and these sleepless nights are not helping him. I sometimes don’t wake at all and get told in the morning about how Willow woke him more than once, I feel bad. If the shoe were on the other foot and it were me Willow was waking, it wouldn’t be fun, but I have an advantage, I’m free to sit around all day if I feel exhausted, he doesn’t have that option.

Last night, and every other night this week Willow has been relentless, she has woken up during the night many times, often not going back to sleep for over an hour.
I get the impression that Willow wants to sleep in our bed with us, to which we won’t oblige, meaning were up and down most of the night.

Willow had to have the day off playgroup the other day because we over slept, the responsibility for this lies with me but with us all being awake throughout the night, an accident like that was bound to happen.

Last night willow came into our room and woke me at 1am, we were both so tired that we cuddled her in, 2am she woke up her dad again so he took her back to bed. At 5am she woke up frantic, crying out loud and started running around in a panic. I think it was the wind. I jumped out of bed to get her and kaboodle dad, who was downstairs getting himself ready for work, came running up to see what was happening. I cuddled her into bed with me and calmed her down but she was wide awake, who can blame her?
We went downstairs, took pillows and blankets with us and cuddled up on the sofa. I had hoped Willow would’ve gone back to sleep but I am yet to see that happening.
Yet again today I have kept Willow off school, she is tired, it’s written all over her face. I can’t expect her to go to school when she is exhausted, but she won’t give in.

I don’t know exactly what I can do about her waking up, aside from the odd moment here or there, We take Willow straight back to bed, We’re not soft when it comes to her behaviour, we like to try and keep her understanding that us parents rule the roost, not her.
I do feel lost though, as much as we play the back and fourth game with her, it’s not working.

We’ve been thinking about what could be the cause of it, we wonder if she’s waking for a drink, maybe she’s waking because she needs the toilet? she never asks to go to the toilet, maybe she’s waking because of that but doesn’t realise that’s what it is? Maybe it’s her night lights, maybe she stirs but the light wakes her?
I really don’t know what it could be. I don’t know what I can do to help the situation.
I’ve tried putting her to bed later, the same thing happens. I can’t stop her from getting out of bed and coming into us. I really feel at a loss.

Have your children ever done this? What did you do to help?

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