Savor the Sleeplessness

February 21st, 2011

No longer content to merely sleep with me, my wee Bed Bug has decided he prefers to sleep ON me. He’s like a little homing pigeon. He rolls toward me and starts burrowing and head butting until I let him put his head on my arm. Then he usually places a protective hand on the nearest boob, to reassure himself that it’s readily accessible should he need it. Silly creature.

A few weeks ago, after about a month of bed-sharing, I was feeling pretty down on the whole co-sleeping thing. I was still not getting anywhere near enough sleep and was tired of waking up covered in baby puke and/or pee. Josh and I had conversations about whether it might be time to start “sleep training” Buggie (which inevitably involves letting him cry for some period of time).

But then something popped into my head. I can’t remember who first said it to me but it is definitely the most sage bit of wisdom I’ve ever heard concerning parenthood:

The days are long, but the years are short.

If that doesn’t capture the experience, I don’t know what does. With two small children, my days tend to be long and exhausting. I don’t get enough sleep. I don’t get a lot of “me” time. I confess to sometimes counting the seconds until I can put Miss Mouse to bed, and inwardly (and sometimes outwardly) cursing when Buggie wakes up for the fifth time in a single night.

But. But, when I get overwhelmed, I try to remind myself of the above. I only have a very few short years when my babies will be babies. Already Miss Mouse is a young girl — there’s barely any baby left at all. And so I’m trying to savor every moment of Buggie’s infant months. Not that I didn’t try to do that with Miss Mouse, but with your firstborn, you’re always looking forward, so excited about the next milestone — I can’t wait until she’s sitting up/crawling/walking, etc.

With Bug, I know what’s coming next, and while I’m excited for him to get there, I’m in no hurry. I want him to stay a baby as long as possible. And I want to take advantage of every chance I have for a snuggle and a kiss and a nuzzle into his soft head. So I’m back to being okay with sharing my bed with fifteen pounds of baby pudge. He’ll be in his own bed soon enough.

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