Sleep Training 

We all know it has to be done. But who would ever in their right mind want to do it! It’s soul destroying. It’s hard. It’s heart breaking. It’s time consuming. But you gotta do it if you ever want to sleep again. It’s better for your child and it’s better for everyone’s general health!

I tried ALL the different ways. Believe me, I’ve had 3 boys who all at some stage were early risers, terrible napper’s and did not know how to go to sleep by themselves. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t their fault. It was mine. I gave them bad habits, I didn’t really know it at the time, but I did. And trying to fix it was awful.

This is what I have tried at some stage over the past few years..

  • Pick up/put down method. (Never worked for me. Made them more hysterical)
  • Just put them down and leave the room (only ever worked on Ollie temporarily)
  • Cry it out. (I have never really done this. I did try a few times but just didn’t have the heart for it)
  • Walk in/settle/walk out (once settled you walk out and wait for 5 mins. If you have to go back in, when you come out you wait 10 mins, next time wait for 15 mins. You get the idea..Never worked for me)
  • Gradual retreat  (only thing that worked for me! It’s the longest method but very effective) HORAY!

James my first born started waking early at 5 months old. At 5am. Every morning! Tried all the above training methods but in the end, it was the gradual retreat thing I had to do. Where you put him down to go to sleep and step away but stay in the room. After every 3 days or so your step back would be closer to the door. Until a million years later you are eventually out the door. Now it did work to be fair. But it was exhausting. And I was pregnant!

Caelan my second born ended up the same but I have no recollection of how I fixed it! That will tell you how tired I most certainly was. There is only 16 months between them! He wasn’t as bad a sleeper as James as I recall. I was adamant I wouldn’t make the same mistakes with him as I did on james. (Lets take a moment to laugh at that!)

And now Ollie. He’s 9 months old and I really feel it’s only now we are getting somewhere. Again I’ve done all the above but it was the gradual thing I’ve ended up doing and it seems to be working. Slowly. His wake ups are better. He can settle himself without me and his naps are better. We still have bad days but that’s life isn’t it? 

My one bit of advice for anyone who is pregnant or maybe on their first baby is this..now this is solid gold info here…go write it down if you have to..I wish I did this from the VERY BEGINNING! And it’s very simple…just put the baby down for all naps and bedtime DROWSY BUT AWAKE. 

For the love of God, just do that and baby won’t know any difference and will always happily go to sleep like that! Don’t do what I did. Probably what a lot of you did too! (I know I’m not alone on this!) And save yourself the heartache, the tears and the sleep deprivison.

Anyone who is doing sleep training at the moment, I wish you the very best! Keep with it. Have patience. Persevere and you will be so happy when you come out the end of it. And so will your baby!!

Fingers crossed. 

Love 

Melissa 

Warrior Woman Mammy

6am wake ups. I can’t cope! 

I know I’m not alone on this. I know there are many, many parents in the same boat. But 6am? I mean in all fairness! Gimme 7am and I’ll be happy with that, but I just can’t function if I’m up at 6am. 

The first night he went in to his own room he slept til 7 so I know he can do it! I’ve tried everything now at this stage. He doesn’t go to bed until 8pm so I’m not putting him to bed too early. And I can’t put him to bed any later than that, but to be honest it wouldn’t make any difference as he’d still wake up the same time. I’m baffled! 

Now I refuse to start the day at 6. I won’t go down the stairs with him till 8 at the earliest. I even feed him in his room and put him back down and pray he will go back to sleep. Sometimes he does but mostly he won’t.  He’s a machine! I’m sure it’s something he will grow out of but it’s an absolute killer.

It sets the tone for the whole day. You just know its going to be a long one. Mammy is tired but still has to look after 3 boys. There could be school runs, play dates, shopping , cooking and cleaning to do. Plus you have to entertain them, to feed them, mind them and ya know, just generally keep them alive. This can be tricky when you are tired!
But we are women! We are warriors! We are mammys! And we do it. I know it won’t be forever. I do..I do..I know that. But when you are in that moment you just want to cry. I suppose I’m lucky in a sense that it’s 6am and not any earlier he’s waking. But the clocks are going back soon…what then??

Ok we will worry about that when the time comes! For now I’ve just gotta grin and bear it. I will figure it out. I have to! And when I do I will let you all know. And then we will all be refreshed and live happily ever after! 

Who am I kidding! Well look we can dream can’t we!! Hugs to all you other tired momma’s. We are doing our best and that’s all that matters.

Love 

Melissa 

Roomie’s no more

9 months! That’s how long we have shared a room. And it’s been a long 9 months. With sickness and teething it’s been one thing after another. But I didn’t care. I wanted him with me, to be close to me, he will be my last child after all, so I will never have this time back.

BUT. I need my room back. My sleep back. My sanity back. It had to happen. You couldn’t swing a cat in the room over the cot and all the baby stuff. I couldn’t even open my wardrobe door fully! I was sick of tip toeing around the room afraid to breath in case he wakes. Cursing the creaky floorboards in one part of the room. Sneaking in to bed and conscious of any tossing and turning I do, even in my sleep!

Oh no, it was time. My husband rearranged furniture and tidied rooms. My 2 other boys are now sharing so Ollie gets his own little room. I was excited and nervous. His sleep hasn’t been amazing so I wondered would it make a difference? Would he even notice he was in another room? And mammy wasn’t there? 

Well he didn’t go down without a fight I can tell ya. He screamed the place down. Frantically looking around. You swear I put him in a cave! After lots of cuddles from me he eventually went to sleep. And slept through the night and didn’t wake until 7am!

You might not think this is a big deal. But it is. To me anyway. He would normally wake about 6 or 6.30! 

And me…I have my room back. So much space now, I forgot how big the room is. I can actually walk around with ease now that all the baby stuff is gone. And I actually had a great nights sleep for the first time in 9 months! Ah we are one step closer to normality! Long may it continue! 

Love

Melissa 

Me time!

Does a mother ever really get this? Like REALLY get this? The free time to herself that she so longs for and so bloody well deserves! I don’t think so.

We can all take an hour off to go get our nails done or get our hair done (if your lucky). Or go shopping or to the cinema. But do you really switch off? Can you forget all the crap that’s been going on, all the dirty washing, and drying that needs to be done. The cooking and cleaning that awaits you when you return? You can? Well I can’t and I’m jealous of you! How do you do it? Tell me, what’s your secret? (Alcohol? Drugs?)

 I want to switch off and I wish I could. But I find it very hard. I just cant do it completely. I switch off to a certain extent obviously but they are always there in the back of my mind. Things I need to do, dinners I have to cook. I leave my husband lists for absolutely everything. He’s well able, don’t get me wrong, but I don’t want him to miss anything. Wow I’m just seeing how neurotic I sound..Maybe I am…a teeny bit!

I do see myself as one of those moms, who feels like a trip to Tesco on my own without the kids, is like a mini holiday! I could spend hours (and €) in there walking/skiping around at a snails pace. Checking out every item. Looking at bargains that i usually am flying past. Soaking up the fredom. Smiling…YES smiling at people. Even chit chatting with the cashier and making jokes! Oh how good it is to laugh! (with a grown up).

This even lasts in the car. I put on the radio, blast the music like I’m 18 again! Then as soon as my key is in the front door..the madness begins again! Only now I’ve a load of shopping to put away and all the stuff I left has piled up and the kids are fighting, and they are hungry! 

You know, of course im gonna take the chance to have that ME time. Anytime I can get it. And no matter what it is and no matter for how long, IT’S MINE! It’s precious. It’s so nice to be alone so you can hear yourself think and just be alone with your thoughts.

Be good to yourselves mammys! Take a break and feel good about it. Don’t feel guilty about it. You need to be refreshed so you can mind your children and give them your best. 

So if you can escape for an hour to get your nails done…or have a glass of wine with a friend…DO IT! Don’t even think twice. In fact RUN! RUN AS FAST AS YOU CAN…

Love

Melissa 

School runs and mammy clicks 

It happens at every school. I imagine it happens all over the world! But it’s something I’ve only noticed just recently.

Groups of women who obviously know each other fairly well, chatting and laughing together. Now there is nothing at all wrong with this. But why do they have to be so clicky? It’s very annoying. 

I suppose it wouldn’t annoy me so much if I was actually part of that click. But I’m not! Why? Beats me!! I do try. I’m friendly and say hi most of the time. But I don’t want to throw myself in to their conversations because that would be just weird. I’d look like a physcho! 

And when they do talk to me, I talk about crap or slip up my words. What the hell is wrong with me? I don’t even want to be in their gang! They seem to be always swapping numbers and I’m sure I’ve heard them talk about a “book club”. I don’t even know their names! Well actually they did probably tell me but I don’t remember!

Maybe it is me..Maybe I’ve been around my children so much that I can’t even hold a proper conversation with another adult (that’s not family!) I need to socialise more. Get mingling. Get those damn phone numbers and join that damn book club! 

Nah. Who am I kidding! I won’t. But I should…You’d never think dropping and collecting the kids from school would be so thrilling!! (Am rolling my eyes here!)

In my own head I’ve decided I’m just too cool for them and I’m out of their league. Anyhoo I’m way too busy to be hanging around gossiping. So let’s just leave it at that shall we.. 

Note to self :: make more of an effort next term!! You know, for them, not me.

Love

Melissa