Friday, December 26, 2008

DAY 12418

Or: The first day of my 35th year.

My answer to the question "What do you want for your birthday this year?" was an easy one.


I have everything I want.*

Sacha has decided on a name for me. It's been coming about for the last 2 weeks or so.

So when ge woke up at 4:45 this morning, and with a little wimper said "Ehhhoooo-mehhh"**, I pretty much felt on top of the world.

*I mean, other than a full night's sleep or a day off, but neither of those are a viable option at the moment.
** Say it out loud... it kinda sounds like mommy!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008


I wish you all the best this holiday season. I am thankful for all that I have, including this wonderful community.
I feel like I am the luckiest woman alive to have The C and my Sacha in my life.
Here we are celebrating Sacha's first Chanukah, The C's 11th and my 33rd.

Lighting the candles

Sacha playing with his present from Mommy and Papa

Sacha enjoying Mommy and Papa's presents

Sunday, December 21, 2008


Whenever I don't blog for long stretches I find it so hard to click that post button. There is always so much to say, and well, the longer I wait to write... You know how it is.

I am putting a top to it this moment. My husband is home with me, on his first day off in 68 days (working 90 hour weeks), our holiday menu is planned and shopped-for, Sacha is taking his afternoon nap, the snow is falling and the world looks beautiful. And I have a second to write.

All in all everything is spectacularly good. Every day, several times a day, I stop and take a moment to appreciate how blessed I am. Yes, I was so so fortunate to be able to conceive and carry my baby to term and have an uneventful labour. But this child that resulted? He is truly and completely amazing. Just writing that brings tears to my eyes. There really are no words to explain this feeling. My heart overflows when I look at him. I never knew it was possible to love one being so much. I wish there was some way to thank the universe for this opportunity to be with and be a mommy to my Sacha.

Ok, right. That was a little tangent. Not sure where it came from because I actually signed on to write about the one thing that is so not awesome right now. (Nobody's perfect, right?)


Sleep. Or, shall I say, lack there of.

Allow me to take a moment to review. When Sacha was 3 weeks old he went down to sleep at about 9pm, and slept until 6 or 7am with one wake up for a feeding. We counted ourselves supremely lucky for this occurrence. We were even fortunate to have a few sleep-through-the-nights. At 4 months Sacha's napping started to get wonky. It seemed to me that he was up too much during the day, but his nights were still fine. At 5 months we went to Portugal for 2 weeks, so with the 5 hour time change all hell broke loose. Sleep was crazy through 10 days of those 2 weeks until Sacha adjusted, and about the same when we got home. We introduced solids around 6 months and i think this allowed us (finally!) to establish a good eating/nursing/napping routine. Until this time Sacha was going down at 7:30pm, still waking up his once in the night to nurse, and sleeping until at least 6am.

Perhaps it was a few weeks later that the nighttime sleep started to get crazy.

At first Sacha would cry about an hour after he went down. The C would go in a rock him gently and he would be back to sleep within a minute or so. This happened only every few nights so we didn't let it bother us.

Just before Sacha hit 8 months (I remember because the first real bad night was The C's birthday), he started waking up multiple times in the night. Anywhere from his usual once for feeding, plus the once about an hour after we put him down, and add to that maybe 1-2 more occasions. At first it wasn't hard- he settled right away (especially if I gave in a nursed him).

Then about 3 weeks ago things started to escalate. Sacha was sick, and so along with the multiple times in the night, Sacha started waking up for good at 5am. We thought it would all work itself out when he got better (which took about 2 weeks). But he's been well now for about a week, and it's only gotten worse.

And by worse I mean: Baby-waking-up-maybe-five-times-a-night-screaming-like-his-hand-has-been-chopped-off-and-refusing-to-settle-sometimes-even-for-more-than-two-hours-at-a-time.

Now I know. Beggars can't be choosers. Sacha really is most awesome in all other ways. So obviously something has to be an issue. But this?? It's just insane. We are not getting any sleep. And we are beside ourselves about what to do to help our little guy.

So, of course, I'm putting this out there so that you guys can help. Before you start in on the advice (which I want! which I anxiously await!), let me tell you what I have found concerning this sleep issue.

Apparently, according to Moxie, there is such thing as a nine month sleep regression. As we are upon nine months, I think this may be us. This regression is linked to major development that is going on right now, for example: crawling, standing, pulling up, cruising. Yup, that's us, alright. Add to these physical milestones some mental ones (which, by the way, completely blow me away, but i will talk about that when I write a nine month post about Sacha), and I think that we have development-induced sleep hell.

So while, YAY, this is all, supposedly, normal, I am totally feeling like: What the fuck can we do about this? Like what? Because, honestly, I can barely take another night of this. I have been driven to tears myself on several occasions. And also, man, the poor kid who spends hours screaming every night.

Alas, before you go dispensing advice/commiseration/hope, here is our sleeping situation. (You know, before someone writes something like: are you co-sleeping?)
  • Sacha sleeps in his own room in a crib. It has been so since he was about 4 weeks old. So his sleeping arrangements have not changed
  • The room is neither too hot nor too cold.
  • I nurse Sacha to sleep at 7:30, give or take. We have never tried to not do this. I am open to suggestions on how to stop doing this, but I think that now is not going to be the time to implement them!
  • I swaddle him (mostly to signal sleepy time), though he does take his arms out. It's an added layer of warmth, and he has never seemed to mind it.
  • When he wakes up he is screaming bloody murder. No amount of patting, back rubbing or shushing will settle him. In fact, it seems like he doesn't seem to realize I've come into the room.
  • So, we have to pick him up. And that doesn't even seem to settle him. Usually after The C tries unsuccessfully to get him to stop crying for half an hour I swoop in and nurse Sacha. Which does settle him for some time.
  • Sometimes the nursing puts him to sleep, sometimes not. If so, then I find that I need to hold him for about an half hour more to prevent him from waking when I place him back in the crib. If nursing doesn't put him to sleep, we have reached a new level of hell because the screaming may start all over again.
  • Yes, he is teething. This is his fourth tooth. I have to tell you that with the previous 3 I didn't even notice they were coming in. Also, it seems like it is taking more than a month for this tooth to come in. I swear I have been saying any day now for that long!
  • No, it's not his diaper or a tag rubbing him or other such thing... we have looked into that.

Here's the most amazing thing, though: Sacha wakes up happy, cooing, playing and rested. He is most cheerful thought the entire day. Most people comment on how much he smiles and that he never cries. You would never know that this is a child that does not sleep at night. So that's great for him. But for us, I feel like we are fighting a loosing battle.

I just don't know what to do for my little baby. His screams pain me so much, but nothing seems to be wrong or fixable. I am also worried that we are in the process of creating bad, unbreakable habits. Eeeks.

And, finally, because you are always such good helpers, I am wondering a few things (and no! I have not asked enough of you already!):

1- Are we (me, Sacha and The C) alone in this? Are any of you experiencing the same thing?
2- Do you think that other people lie about how much their babies sleep?

I didn't ask for holiday gifts from you, so please consider your replies the biggest present you can give me this year. Many many thanks in advance, blogosphere.

Monday, December 08, 2008


1. We were feeling better.

2. And now we're all sick again. Even The C. It's horrible. Obviously not the most horrific thing that can happen to a family. But still.

3. Sacha has had a runny nose and a cough for what will be a week tomorrow. We steam, use saline drops and the dreaded nose bulb. The snot just keeps coming. Sacha has no fever, and is sleeping pretty well (aside from making a habit of getting up at 5am every morning), and is his happy playful self. So, while I am not that worried about him as his behaviours aren't altered, I am concerned that he isn't getting any better. I will call and make doctors' appointments for us both today. (And praise myself all the while for choosing the pediatrician that is in my family doctor's practice.)

4. The little guy turned 8 months. I can't believe how big he is and how much he can do. It is just awesome watching him absorb and learn. This subject, of course, deserves its own post. I hope I will get to it soon. As I type this the pumpkin is playing in my paper recycling bin in my office- his new favorite activity.

5. The nanny is working out wonderfully. It is such a relief. (Though she has been sick too!) I am trying to bring in some work, but with me being sick again it has be a bit hard.

6. I was cleaning up my files on the computer and found my birth story. I wrote it the day after we came home from the hospital, it's in point form, rough around the edges and not complete. Are you guys interested in reading it anyways? Let me know.

7. I am reading your blogs but don't always have the energy to comment. I'm sorry. I am here and support you all, I hope you know that.