There is one universal topic that brings easy conversation amongst all parents of young children; sleep. Are they a good sleeper? How many sleeps are they having during the day? I know in my Mother’s Group it is a hot topic of conversation, we are constantly comparing our children’s sleeping habits or lack there of.
Right now, in our house, we are in the transition stage of daytime napping. As far as I am concerned Leo has always been a great sleeper. Yes, we have had weeks were I wondered if I would ever function like a normal person again, but those days are gone and we are now well and truly in an established routine. Our nights, for the most part, are peaceful and easy, our days, on the other hand, are beginning to change. We are in a stage of transition. My darling toddler now believes he is a big boy who no longer needs a sleep during the day, which his pregnant mother is not appreciating one bit.
I am getting soft in my pregnancy and Leo knows it. I have lost my hard mummy edge. Where I used to happily let Leo yell out for at least fifteen minutes before I would go and get him for another book, I am now struggling to push it out to five minutes. When it is just he and I at home, he knows that this is the time to push it and see how much he can get away with, fighting the urge to sleep all for the sake of a crazy afternoon with Mum. I blame my pregnancy because I know that is what has happened. I have become pregnant and I am suddenly aware that the days and moments where it is just the two of us are disappearing, so, as a result he gets away with more. When there are suddenly limited days left as a two rather than three why wouldn’t I want more time spent with him awake? Oh that’s right, because he is still only a one year old and he still NEEDS a sleep!
When sleep doesn’t happen, the afternoon is chaotic and, needless to say, exhausting for all parties involved. The house looks like three bombs have gone off and by dinner time there is a very whingy, very puffy faced child trying his best to cling to my legs as I attempt to cook something. Some days are absolute mayhem, I hate to say, that I even count the hours until either Duncan gets home or I can lock him in his high chair and sit down peacefully for ten minutes myself.
Then there are the days where sleep doesn’t happen in the cot but it does happen on me. Those are the moments that as a mum you absolutely cherish. Every time I get Leo up when he protests this is what I am hoping for, another quiet moment just he and I before there is someone else to take care of as well.
I do realise that at some point in the next 18 weeks I will have to regain my tough edge. Ignore the tears and the pleas for ‘one more’ and get back to where we were prior to my soppy pregnant mum state. At some point I will be too big to have him comfortably sleep on me, I will be too tired to be the first one to go running when he yells out.
There were many things in pregnancy that I was ready for. I had thought about how I would feel about Leo becoming one of two rather than a one of just one, never did I imagine that my second pregnancy would change the way I mother the child that came from my first in the way that it has.