Thursday, March 29, 2012

RAW confessions

SLEEP ... it is what this child of ours does so well ... now her brother on the other  hand ....

I have been trying to write a blog post for seriously 2 weeks now ... other things seem to get in the way ... life just happens.  I look at the blog as a time that I can sit down and journal.  It is quite therapeutic for me, and maybe, just maybe, it helps someone out there in blogger world.

The month of February into the first few weeks of March were extremely hard for us.  Jackson's sleep was worse than it had been the previous month, I was exhausted, my patience level was nil, and I wasn't enjoying life.  I have learned sleep deprivation can literally sap the love of life right out of a person.  A mom can handle it for those first few months, but when it keeps dragging on for 6 or more months, it begins to really ware on you.

Two weeks ago, after Jackson's dedication, I felt like I really hit rock bottom.  I was an emotional mess due mostly to lack of sleep!  (Thank you son!)  I broke down that Sunday afternoon and felt like my life was determined by Jackson's sleep or lack there of.  The tears just kept coming!  (Crying is so exhausting!)  I went to bed every night not knowing what time I would be getting up, thus I always tried to hit the sack early (I am talking 8:30-9:15pm).  Nap times never seemed to be synchronized any more, so I couldn't count on a personal nap!  I wasn't able to spend quality time with Nate because I was in such deep need for sleep.  Obviously without quality time put into your marriage, your marriage feels the weight and stress of your current situation.  The thing was I knew Jackson could sleep longer stretches because he had showed it many times in the past. (Heck, the kid was sleeping better during months 3 and 4 than he was at 6 months!) I think that was the most frustrating part.  His sleep was getting worse instead of better! :(  Also, I could never count on a good nap from him.  I would literally spend 30 minutes trying to get him to sleep and he would wake up 30-45 minutes later.  All of this being said, that Sunday afternoon I KNEW something had to change or I was going to go insane!!  I know lack of sleep doesn't bother many people, but I am a 8-9hr/night kind of girl.  If I don't have that much sleep, I am very cranky and honestly don't do very well.  All of this being said, you can understand why 6 months of poor, broken sleep literally BROKE me!

My parents took Sophia for 4 days and I knew I had to tackle this huge problem!!  I spent a lot of time in prayer on Sunday night and throughout the next week.  I realize now those 4 days without Sophia were a breath of fresh air.  I could concentrate 100% on Jackson and give him every ounce of energy I had.  I was able to make headway with his sleeping, specifically his naps, which then began to help at night.  We had to (a) break him of the swaddle (b) teach him to go to sleep on his own for every nap/bed (c) teach him to go back to sleep after wake up's (d) disassociate nursing and sleep.  The first week was a lot of work, but I (through God's grace) began to see results faster than I anticipated.  Naps seemed to get more consistent, scheduled, and "easier" all around after a week.  We have had a few good nights of sleep in a row this week, so maybe, just maybe, we are on the right track!

I am so thankful for my parents and in-laws who came to the rescue in a very critical time!!  They were all so giving of their time and energy helping out!

After going through that really difficult time, I felt the presence of God like no other!  It was truly amazing!  I know what Paul meant by this verse in 2 Cor 12:9 "And He has said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness." Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me."   I had to rely on God's grace to get me through.  I couldn't solve this problem in the power of my own strength!  Looking back, I also learned that God truly does care about the "small things" in life.  The past few nights have been wonderful and I feel like a new person.  I hope we are on our way to a better place, but if we regress, I pray that I will remember His mercies are new EVERY morning and that His grace is sufficient!  

I know sleep is the beginning of the parent struggles we will have with Jackson, but what an amazing lesson in trust, faith, and obedience to get us refocused and remember God will be the one to guide us in raising our children!  Goodness knows we NEED His help!

I hope you will seek the peace and guidance of a very powerful God in your daily struggles!  It is the only thing that can give you true comfort in the midst of chaos!

Isn't it hard to believe an adorable lil guy with that beautiful
 smile could cause such joy and grief at the same time?
Have you ever had any times during life where you began to understand Paul's message that God's grace is sufficient?

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