October 3, 2008

Post-PK Sleep

Sleep has never been the same since PK's birth. It is sacred and precious. Getting even a bit of sleep is a wonderful thing. Before PK was born, I was a zombie after 5 hours of sleep. Nowadays, I feel refreshed after 5 hours of sleep! I have to admit though, that the first time that PK slept for more than 2 or 3 hours scared the living daylights out of us. My pre-natal Yoga instructor said that babies sleeping for more than 3 hours can cause SIDS. I don't really know how true that is, but if it is, it's a scary thought. She said that if the baby doesn't wake to feed every 2 or 3 hours, then you should wake the baby. Ha! Easier said than done!

The first time that PK slept for more than 3 hours, we tried to wake her up, but to no avail. We tried changing her diaper to see if that would wake her up, since at that time, she used to wail during diaper changes. She woke up a bit, but lasted about 10 seconds at the breast (this was back when I was breast-feeding exclusively). After that, we learned to just let her sleep when she wanted to. When she's hungry, she lets us know. Nowadays, we're more than happy to let PK sleep for more than 3 hours at a time at night. Not that we sleep all that well when she sleeps that long. We spend more time worrying about her than we do sleeping.

I think that that's why sometimes late at night when PK is sound asleep in the crib in her room, both the hubby and I seem to experience these nighttime hallucinations where we think that PK is still in bed with us after a feeding and that we've somehow either dropped her or suffocated her. The crazy thing is that these hallucinations are so REAL! I often find myself cradling a corner of our duvet, CONVINCED that PK is there in my arms, and completely distraught when my eyes stop playing ticks on me and relay the fact that PK was never there to begin with.

Sometimes I'm not entirely convinced that that PK isn't in bed with us, so I end up going to her room just to make sure that she's where she's supposed to be (i.e. not in bed with me) and that she's still breathing.

The funny thing is that both the hubby and I experience these hallucinations, but not usually at the same time. This is good, because we need one of us to be sane enough to explain to the other that PK is not being smothered by one of us in bed and that she's perfectly safe in her crib in her own room.

Now that she's getting older and we have a nighttime feeding routine established, these hallucinations are becoming more infequent, thank goodness. It probably helps that the hubby takes the 3(-ish)am feeding and I take the 6(-ish feeding, since it allows us to get more sleep and therefore feel more refreshed and have fewer hallucinations.

Speaking of sleep, I'm totally starting to doze off. I'm lucky if this post makes any sense at all, so I think this is my cue for exit.

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