Bringing up a baby is tiring. There’s no two ways about it, I don’t think I’ve ever been so tired. Teddy is currently in the midst of his fourth developmental leap and my god, don’t we know it. From about 4pm, he is really unsettled and just whinges for no apparent reason, until his bath time. He’ll then fall asleep fine, before waking up not even two hours later for his first feed and then he’s awake every hour after that.
If you follow me on Twitter (Rchi_B) or Instagram (fromrachael_claire), you’ll be able to witness my middle of the night meltdowns and ramblings, wondering you can actually die from lack of sleep. Dramatic I know, but when you’ve been awake for three hours with a crying baby who will only sleep on your chest whilst you’re walking around your pitch-black bedroom, it does cross your mind.
It’s so hard not to feel frustrated and wondering what the fuck is wrong with your child. He’s had his bum changed, he’s been fed & winded. I swear, you can never go wrong when offering your child the boob, so when even that fails. You honestly don’t know what to do next. Boob always works, WHY ISN’T THE BOOB WORKING?! As you look at your baby like they have six heads.
Aaron was working the late last night and I did the bedtime routine alone, which I’ve done many a time before and usually we are fine. However last night, Teddy was completely on one! He wouldn’t feed at all, screaming whenever I tried to latch him on but trying to latch himself on at the same time!
At one point, I honestly thought about packing a bag and walking out. Leaving a note for Aaron, stuck to Teddy’s baby-grow saying “cya in a bit bitches, Mama is off to get some sleep!!”
There is this internal rage you feel as a mother, it’s like nothing else you’ve felt. You’ve done everything you can to soothe them, so when they are still crying right down your ear-hole. You find yourself whispering about what an absolute twat they are, in a sweet voice that is saved just for your baby. All the whilst rubbing their back gently with tears in your eyes.
Of course we all love our children and we’d do anything for them. But there is this huge pressure with being a mother to make out like everything is perfect. Your child is perfect, you have your shit together 100% of the time and your house looks like something out of Ideal Home magazine. Who is to blame for that? Society? Social media? Yourself?
I think they all play a part! Books tell you how your child should be sleeping by a certain age, there is that perfect mother on Instagram whose child sleeps all night and never cries…
I need to stop comparing myself to all the other people out there and what THEIR babies are doing. It’s so easy to fall into the trap of believing everything you see on social media. People post pictures of their seemingly perfect lives with their babies that sleep through for 10 hours at night and never cry. However they never let you in on the ‘behind-the-scenes’. They never tell you about that one ‘off’ night their baby had where they cried for hours and wouldn’t settle.
The lesson there is remembering..don’t believe everything you see online! Side note: Also don’t go browsing through Instagram in the middle of the night when you are feeling at your lowest, because you will contemplate throwing yourself out the window, reading about perfect routines and sleep patterns.
I am learning to enjoy this time. Soon he won’t be snuggling into my chest in the night, seeing his little milk drunk smiles and hearing his giggle at 3am. Before I know it he will be a boy who loves his independence and won’t need his mummy to help him sleep…
To all the mamas whose babies aren’t sleeping and are powering through..I salute you. We have to remember that this will not last forever. I mean, it can’t possibly..right?
To all the mamas whose babies could sleep through a hurricane..screw you.