Is there anything that is quite as all-consuming to you, yet boring to everyone else, as baby sleep? I feel like these days I am living and dying by the number of hours of sleep I get every night, and while the number might objectively seem not that bad (I don’t even want to SAY what sleep is or isn’t like in our house at any given time, because this issue is fraught with social landmines like almost no other, especially when you bring sleep training into it) I am finding it a bit difficult to cope. Frankly, I lack the grace and aplomb of the woman who wrote this blog post, which showed up repeatedly in my Facebook newsfeed last week and includes this idyllic description of getting up in the night with a baby:
So for now, I find beauty in the peaceful 4 a.m. feedings in our cozy little nursery. We are perched above the naked oak trees in our own lavender nest. We watch the silent snow fall and a bunny scampering across its perfect white canvas. It’s just me and my little baby, the neighborhood is dark and still. We alone are up to watch the pale moon rise and the shadows dance along the nursery wall. She and I are the only ones to hear the barn owl hooting in the distance. We snuggle together under a blanket and I rock her back to sleep.
I … uh. Well. I don’t want to say too much about this, because I know there are many women (including many dear friends of mine, based on the number of times I saw it shared last week) out there who found this quite profound and meaningful. I personally find it hard to be inspired by this sort of thing. I wonder often if these posts, which are becoming more and more common, do more harm than good. If you’re more inclined to slump miserably in the rocking chair, daydreaming of the giant cup of coffee you’ll be making immediately upon rising in the morning, than to scan the perfect snowy landscape for owls and bunnies while feeling blessed and privileged and grateful for the opportunity to be awake in the middle of the night … it can leave you feeling a little deflated. A lot of the moms who write online seem to be in a competition to see who can enjoy the crappy parts of parenting the most, and it feels a little disengenuous to me. I think it’s okay to call a spade a spade, when the spade is “seventeen loads of laundry a day” and what you’re calling it is “boring and repetitive”. Or maybe they really do enjoy doing laundry. I suppose anything is possible. It takes all kinds etc. Different strokes for different folks etc.
Although there is a total dearth of fuzzy scampering animals in our neighbourhood in the wee small hours of the morning (WHERE ARE OUR BUNNIES? seriously, this is the first opportunity I’ve had in AGES to use the word “scampering”) what I DID see on Saturday as I glanced out the window was the house across the street — the one that hosted loud parties most weekend nights last summer — completely dark and silent. This led me to contemplate two possible scenarios, in the event that history repeats itself once the weather gets warm enough to comfortably (although inexplicably) hang out in one’s garage (you have a whole house! a big one! why are you in the garage?) drinking beer with your buddies:
1) Storming across the street early on a Saturday morning after being kept up late into the night by the thumping bass coming out of the open garage doors, and repeatedly ringing the doorbell until such a time as they received the message or my personal safety was threatened, whichever came first, OR
2) Storming across the street early on a Saturday morning after being kept up late into the night by the thumping bass coming out of the open garage doors, and holding a boombox playing Peter Gabriel’s “In Your Eyes” above my head, until such a time as I had entertained myself sufficiently to dull the frustration of the night before
Nighttime feedings! The perfect time to formulate elaborate revenge fantasies! Cherish every moment!