How do I sleep this early

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Welcome to The Breastfeeding Cafe Carnival! This post was written as part of The Breastfeeding Cafe's Carnival. For more info on the Breastfeeding Cafe, go to www.breastfeedingcafe.wordpress.com. For more info on the Carnival or if you want to participate, contact Claire at clindstrom2 {at} gmail {dot} com. Today's post is about nighttime parenting and nursing. Please read the other blogs in today's carnival listed below and check back for more posts July 18th through the 31st!


Nighttime parenting and nursing. What does this look like for me? Right now, this looks like sleep from before it gets dark to after it gets light.

One of the things I am convinced that I will never get used to is the sleep schedule with kids. Before having kids, I still slept like a teenager. I would stay up late at night and sleep in even later in the morning. But, kids won't let you do this. On those rare mornings when the kids sleep until 8 AM, I feel like I have wasted half the day. And staying up late is no longer an option. After they get in bed, I'm too tired to do anything other than (clean the house, do the dishes, iron my clothes for the morning, do the laundry, get some food ready for leftovers for the kids, and) go to bed.

Luckily, even though my kids are on this really strange sleep-at-night schedule, they like sleep as much as I do. My kids are sleepers. I put them in bed and, barring teething or illness, they sleep until morning. Both of them started doing this pretty early. Orion was slower than Isis, but both of us enjoyed the breastfeeding, so we would wake up at night to breastfeed. Despite loving the breastfeeding, we both got used to doing without it in the middle of the night for the sake of sleep.

So, night nursing happens right before bed and first thing in the morning instead of in the middle of the night. We both find this to be a great compromise.

In the first few weeks, with both of my kids, I would nurse while sitting with them on the couch. With Orion, it was because we weren't coordinated enough to nurse in bed for quite a while. With Isis, it was so we didn't wake up daddy. With Isis, I would just sit on the couch and zone out, but with Orion, I would watch TV. I have to say that it changed my relationship with TV completely.

I used to hate TV. Now, due to spending time in front of the TV doing something fun like nursing the baby, I have found that TV isn't the horrible thing I thought it was. Good thing too. Now, I can watch something while ironing. I have found that I can iron enough clothes for the week in one hour long show.

Nighttime parenting has it's downs for sure. I like sleep and waking in the middle of the night to someone crying is a bit traumatic for all of us. But, nighttime parenting has its ups. The kids are so busy during the day. They want to run and play and eat and read. But, in the middle of the night, whether they are hurting or sick, what they want is to snuggle. Those middle of the night times are a snuggling paradise. I worry about the illness. I feel horrible for the teether. But, the snuggling brings me closer to my kids every time.

Nighttime parenting is all about cuddling for me. I have a cuddle routine with both of my kids before bed. Then, in the middle of the night we cuddle. Then, waking in the morning, the first thing they get is a cuddle. Cuddling and nursing go together. Nighttime is the time for nursing and cuddling. As my kids get older, I really hope to hang on to the cuddling for as long as possible.

 


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Category: Motherhood
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