No one told us that once you get your baby sleeping through the night they sometimes decide to stop. As in, Bella has stopped sleeping through the night for a good month now. Some nights are better than others, but recently Bella has also come down with her first case of the sniffles and cough combo. That amounts to her being up beyond the number of fingers on one hand. I always lose count past that and head into straight delirium.
Weekends are the worst, because I'm still trying to learn that weekends just aren't what they used to be. I crave those endless hours of weekend sleep, but Bella knows no different. Take last night for example:
11:00 PM Mike and I crawl in to bed and say our prayers together, which includes a prayer about Bella maybe, just maybe, sleeping through the night. And then we make it extra holy by telling God that it will help us be alert during His church service tomorrow.
1:50 AM The whimpering starts. I flinch. I jump up and replace the pacifier quickly, thinking that maybe she'll forget she wanted to wake up and reenter dream world.
2:30 AM Was that whining in my dreams? Nope. Out of bed. To the crib. Pacifier. Where is it? Hand in a frantic search. Baby squirming. There! Under her head. Okay. Back to bed. Yeah?
2:50 AM Nope! I dramatically head to the crib, as if someone's watching and might possibly feel sorry for me. I give up. I go against what all those crazy professionals in the books are trying to tell me, and I feed her. 15 minutes later, she's out. There! That will keep her until morning. I so have this under control.
5:30 AM Bella, really? This does not count as the morning. Let me try this pacifier trick one more time. How is Mike still sleeping? I fall back in to bed a little louder than normal just so he knows how hard I'm working tonight. He rolls over. Sleeping beauty. Ugh.
5:50 AM This pacifier is worthless. All I can think about is how my life is pure misery. I want out of this vicious cycle. I'm trapped! I pick my baby up in frustration and quickly learn that is not a wise thing to do. The things going through a mother's head at these moments are not likely to translate well to other precious human beings in your life. I'm better off to leave Bella in the crib until I get control of my self. Mike! I'll take my frustration out on him. After all, where's he been this whole night? Who cares if he's trying to finish yet another paper that's due tomorrow. It's dark, I'm tired, and I'm all alone with a baby I have no control over! I feed her in the midst of my fumes. I re-swaddle her, extra tight. She looks up and smiles, like she knows nothing of my horrible, ugly thoughts. I decide I'll wait until morning to erupt my frustration on to Mike.
7:00 AM Mike gets up to work on his paper. Bella doesn't miss a beat and joins him. She's been waiting for this moment all night long.
9:00 AM I stumble out of the bedroom. Mike shoots himself in the foot by asking, "How'd she do last night?" I erupt on him. Poor Mike. He says he wishes I would have woken him up. He'd love to help me despite that silly paper of his. He feels so bad. And he really didn't do one thing wrong. In fact, he served me by letting me sleep in. Bella is still smiling and so happy to see me. Did I mention this is in the middle of her being sick? I'm stuck staring at my sin in the face. All I keep thinking is "He does not treat us as our sins deserve." Then Mike shows me what Bella has been up to this morning:
Lord, thank you for this sweet, scootin' baby girl. For my precious husband who loves me and this baby girl. For a Sunday morning full of new mercies. For the gift of church after a long night. For your Son and his forgiveness when I have chosen impatience, anger, and self righteousness in the wee hours of the morning instead of grasping for your grace. For not treating me as my sins deserve.
“1 Praise the LORD, my soul;
all my inmost being, praise his holy name.
2 Praise the LORD, my soul,
and forget not all his benefits—
3 who forgives all your sins
and heals all your diseases,
4 who redeems your life from the pit
and crowns you with love and compassion…
8 The LORD is compassionate and gracious,
slow to anger, abounding in love.
9 He will not always accuse,
nor will he harbor his anger forever;
10 he does not treat us as our sins deserve
or repay us according to our iniquities.
11 For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his love for those who fear him;
12 as far as the east is from the west,
so far has he removed our transgressions from us.”
It's a good Sunday here in the Mannina household. Hope your's is just as full of His compassion and mercy. And for those of you without scootin' action, I hope Bella via video has that covered, too. :)