December 6, 2012

on life, lately...

Yesterday evening I had this big rush of contentment. I love those moments—that natural high that envelops you and makes you feel like at that second everything is perfect.

I've felt on top of things lately, which is a feat. I know I mentioned it previously, but somewhere in the last few months there was a day everything just clicked. All of a sudden I feel comfortable with my new way of life. I feel like there's a routine…one that doesn't leave me guilt-ridden and all angsty when I haven't managed to complete a to-do list or one of my many daily goals. I feel free of so much that had been weighing on me so heavily during my daughter's first year.

I'm sure this may have to do with Eisley sleeping all night long for not one, but two nights in a row this past week. I woke up before the sun each morning and was all like, "Wait, what? I just slept six hours straight and you're telling me I'm not done yet? And this isn't some mean trick? HALLELUJAH!" It's no secret that I birthed a rather dreadful sleeper (also created partly due to habits we have yet to break, as well as our room-sharing situation). But her sleeping all night long is huge, considering it's happened so rarely since she was born. Even if it's just once a week, it's like I finally am allowing myself to have hope.

Call me dramatic if you will, but those of you who have gone months without more than 3 consecutive hours of sleep will totally get it. Of course, I hate that any of us have to get it, because, in a perfect world, all babies would sleep 12 hours straight by time they're 4 weeks old (like my sisters and I did, darn it all). But we don't live in a perfect world, and some of us wander through the first year of motherhood in a slight haze, surviving on coffee and carbs and more coffee and weepy phone calls to mom and encouragement from a husband who desperately wants to fix something he just can't fix.

Which is all to say: The light at the end of the tunnel does exist. I'm catching glimpses, and it is glorious. For the past couple months—even when she isn't sleeping all night long—she is waking only once to eat, then goes right back to sleep afterwards. Although I'd love to get rid of that one feeding, I'm not going to rip my hair out trying to figure it out while still sharing a room with her.

In other news, I'm keeping busy with my current hodgepodge of projects—even crossing a few extra things off my to-do list on days Eisley decides to take a 4 hour afternoon nap. (Although she's never been a good nighttime sleeper, I was blessed with a child who loves her naps, for sure.)

As the end of the year approaches, I'm halfway in crazy-obsessive-resolution-lady mode and halfway in slow-down-and-simplify-everything-in-humanity mode. Although the former is a little bit self-explanatory, here are a few things I am doing to embrace the latter:

  • Organizing incredibly random things. Like my recipe box. And Eisley's outgrown clothes.
  • Reading. And I do mean actively reading, not taking four months to get through one novel. (There was a solid year that I read absolutely no books other than parenting books, and that melted my brain a little bit.) I'm actually re-reading Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House books—which I'm sure some people may find odd, but I'm actually okay with that. Those books calm me.
  • Sudoku before bed every evening. I found one of Jay's old sudoku books (from back when it was such a huge craze) and I've started doing one or two puzzles before bed. My mind is going a mile a minute by the end of the day, and this helps my thoughts slow down before I go to sleep.
  • No Twitter during December. I've wanted to take another break, and this month seems to be the perfect time. Although I will be posting blog links there, and will periodically check for replies and DMs, the main point of my Twitter "break" is to limit my own usage of it. I just don't want to get caught up in all that noise this time of year…it's not good for my heart or mind.
I'm starting to think about the year ahead of me, and all that it will hold. I'm caught between wanting to do it all and wanting to do nothing at all, which is awkward and a little ridiculous. But I'm sure I'll have it all sorted out one of these days.

13 comments :

  1. I always like to take a Twitter break the week of Christmas. Do I need to see what everyone received, like I'm in junior high? UHH, NO.

    Glad your peanut is giving you some sleep, mama. It's like they know when we're finally about to fall off the cliff and then they cut us a break. Babies! :-)

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  2. Loved reading this, Kerri. Like the Little House books, your blog comforts me. : )

    If you want a little encouragement, I read this post this morning - gave me some things to think about.

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  3. About the sleeping, I was reading a book where it says may be we should limit the amount of time our children sleep in the afternoon. That will give them time to get tired during the day and sleep all thru the night.
    I don't know what's like to sleep just 3 hours straight, but I do know what's like to have a 1 year old who wakes up every 2 hours screaming 'mamamamamama' and not wanting to go to sleep. That happened for 2 months. Last night was the first night he slept ... but he took only one nap in the morning. :)
    Hope things get better with the sleeping and you have a great December!

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  4. I so enjoyed this!

    And I echo Ashley—like a little dose of cozy comfort. Glad you're doing such good things to make the end of your year sweet and simple.

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  5. I am sad you are taking a shop break right as I became obsessed with it! :)

    We will miss you in December! Have a lovely break.

    And ugh. Yes. Jack was that kind of a sleeper too. Hang in there! While there are still a few rough nights, I get full nights of sleep more often than I don't. Hope for you!

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  6. Darling Kerri, I adore you so much. this post makes me want to cheer you on and give you lots of hugs, just because. And I want to come over and cook your lil fam a meal, complete with dessert.

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  7. So happy, Kerri, that you're finding yourself in a calmer, more peaceful place these days! Sometimes we have to power through to get to the end of the tunnel.... I am hoping that you'll have a wonderful holiday season and social media break! I think Christmas is just the time to do it :)
    Much love.

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  8. I'm glad your daughter has been learning to sleep through the night! Hopefully she'll keep it up for you. I'm crossing my fingers!
    Glad that your feeling good with things in your life. I hope that continues for you even more, in the new year coming :)

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  9. I love that you do some Sudoku before bed! Being OCD, my mind is constantly whirling and usually with the most dreadful worries and such. One of my favorite relaxation techniques is to close my eye, and use the pure sounds from nature - since we often have the window open a crack - to "be" in a different place. Some times it's in a tent under the stars, on the ocean, or maybe even in a tree house in the jungle. It's a lot of fun and good for both relaxation and imagination! Plus, I have the comfort of visiting other places while being snug and sound in bed with Jen and the heap of kitties. ;)

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  10. Hi Kerry, just saw this post and about cutting out the night feed -just stop. Go to her briefl when she wakes, pat her a little, then return to bed. It'll onl take a few nights and shell stop waking. It's easy actually. If she puts up a fight give her a little bottled water (cooled boiled water in her bottle) and she will get the idea.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you for the advice! We tried cutting out the feed a while ago, but we run into extra difficulty because we're sharing a room with her. She would refuse to sleep and just stand there in her crib, all rage-y. The one feeding didn't bother me too much after a while because it was so quick (thankfully!).

      She was sick this past week, though, and we ended up weaning her (she couldn't nurse because she was so stuffy). Perfect timing, because she is now consistently sleeping through the night. Hurrah!

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  11. Your blog came up as a suggestion in my google reader and I really like it. This particular blog sounds reminds me of my baby. I have a 10 month old who rarely sleeps longer than 3 hours at a time at night. He does go right back to sleep after eating, so it's not nearly as bad as it could be, but I'm very excited for when he does sleep all night!

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