I think 4.5 months, for me, is the Wall Phase of infant development. As in, there's only so much sleep deprivation you can take, and then you hit a wall. That was me this past week. Jr. has been going through the so-called "4 month sleep regression" something terrible for the last 3-4 weeks, and it finally started catching up with me. A few days ago I began having that familiar feeling that I remember from when J was little, that I'm-going-to-start-climbing-the-walls-motherhood-is-kind-of-suffocating-me-right-now feeling. You know, the knot in your stomach and heart-racing instant stress you feel when the baby wakes up for the third time in 3 hours. And it's only 2am. The feeling that you want to go downstairs and run out the front door instead of getting up and trudging down the hall to the baby's room. Followed by the old resentment that only moms have boobs and therefore 90% of the middle of the night BS falls on you while hubby lifts his head for a few seconds to inanely tell you "I think the baby's up again" before falling back asleep. Then when you get to the baby's room and said baby starts kicking you in the stomach and pinching your breast and basically jacking around, waking up more instead of getting sleepier, for a few moments you think "Maybe this time you'll just have to cry, buddy" and consider not soothing him back to sleep even though you know he's still a little too young for that.
Of course this is all topped off by the immediate Mom Guilt that you even have such terrible, selfish thoughts. I sometimes wonder if dads have all of this internal turmoil, and something tells me...probably not. Between J and Jr. and work and pumping and what feels like a perpetually messy house and paying bills and stupidly re-starting Weight Watchers in the midst of all this stress, I definitely ran full speed into my Wall. Stick a fork in me, I'm a bit overdone. It's the usual Mommy song-and-dance: I feel like I'm taking care of everyone else, but no one is really taking care of me (including me). This morning I was looking in the mirror examining the horrid bags under my eyes and Oscar the Grouch-like unplucked eyebrows I've been sporting...when I spotted two new long gray hairs right at my hairline. Instead of being upset, I thought, "Yeah, that seems about right." Just in time for my birthday next week, too!
I know, I know, things could be worse. As someone reminded me this week, my kids are healthy and happy and in the grand scheme of things all of this is more annoying than anything else. I'm not going to die from being tired (although there's usually a freakout around 3am where I think that may be exactly what will happen). And Jr. is pretty cute, full-on laughing and "talking" and holding toys and making a valiant effort to roll over every day. I had to remind myself that all of these sleep "problems" are due to his little brain developing, a process I feel so blessed to witness again even though it's exhausting on my end of it.
So I plucked my eyebrows today, straightened my hair for the first time in weeks (and tried to ignore the alarming amount of hair in the drain and hairbrush, kind of forgot about that little postpartum gift, the hair loss), put some makeup on...and then fell asleep on my bed. Yeah, that seems about right.
Practice makes perfect
7 years ago