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My name is Clea and I am a sleep addict.

Sleep is all I can think about. I find myself staring out the window and daydreaming about actually dreaming. I talk about sleep like it’s the only thing that matters and I can never, ever get enough.

Sleeping is like cycling up a big hill to me – falling asleep is the long, slow trip to the peak while I try to mentally untangle myself. It takes forever, but once I hit the figurative summit and start to descend– whoosh, it’s all over and there’s a toddler patting my face to wake me up before the birds have even begun to sing.

My son Rafferty is eighteen months old now and I’m afraid that with this one I pulled the short straw. The kid does. Not. Sleep.

Even as a tiny baby we struggled to find a regular naptime, with me trying self settling, co-sleeping, whatever the internet suggested.

I’d tell myself after another long night with as many ups and downs as Kim Kardashian’s love life that I’d have a nap while he was kipping that afternoon, but the cruel irony was always that he’d always fall asleep in the car, the one place where I definitely had to be awake.

Now, multiple day naps are long gone, and Raff is so go-go-go that it’s hard to get him down for more than an hour in the afternoons, if at all. It’s not that he’s tired and cranky – he powers through without stopping. I watch for signs like tantrums and eye rubbing but the tears only come when I scoop him up and attempt to get him to lie still.

No day nap is a whole new world of crazy.

I depended on that time out so I could actually fold some laundry or do one of the many things that he doesn’t like me to do – like washing the dishes, cleaning the bathroom, or you know – eating something.

The whole bedtime routine concept is a cruel joke too. I try the dinner, bath, bed, story thing in an attempt to get him to wind down, I mention that bed time is coming, we have a quiet cuddle and then he wriggles out of my arms and starts running in circles around the living room, laughing hysterically while I watch catatonically from the couch.

Rafferty is thriving, gorgeous, delightful. I am haggard and graying, confused and moaning softly as I travel. I am officially a zombie (one from an old school horror movie, not the fast moving ones who chase Brad Pitt and Will Smith).

Here come one of my terrible mother confessions – the other week Raff was unwell – not sick enough to have us worried but he was lethargic and weary. It was wonderful – oh my God he slept till after 7am. I actually woke up before him two mornings in a row. I felt the life coming back into my eyes and the fog lifted from my brain. This was what normal feels like! I’d forgotten.

So what to do? In between all the thinking about sleep I am planning my revenge. I can’t wait till Raff is 16. I am going to creep into his room before dawn and stick my fingers in his nose. I will say “How do you like it?”

Does sleep rule your life?

  • By the time your son is 16 you might be annoyed by him playing loud music you don’t like or being on the computer half the night, laughing at jokes, chatting on facebook or facetime or whatever and it beeping when I new message appears. The same applies to an iPhone or similar. Once your son sleeps all night, and later when he is older enjoy the peace – unless he snores or talks in his sleep.

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  • I don’t get enough sleep for it to rule my life. I’m so used to it now, I’ve forgotten what a full uninterrupted nights sleep feels like

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  • Hahah love your last threat. I am exhausted by the end of the day that I instantly fall asleep but I am not generally tired during the day. But then I don’t have to wake up in the middle of the night anymore thankfully!

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  • My eldest is 21 and my youngest is 3 so I haven’t had a good nights sleep for as long as I can remember.
    One day it will happen, lol, maybe in another 5 to 10 years…

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  • I don’t sleep well – I either lay awake thinking with eyes open or I spend the night in an awful sleep/wake/sleep/wake cycle that leaves me more tires than I begin. I would say that just the THOUGHT of sleep – real peaceful uninterrupted sleep – rules my life.

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  • Love my sleep but seems that the children & hubby don’t agree. They are the first to fall asleep at night yet I’m the one getting up during the night and making sure everyone is good and covered, but Im the first they wake… arghh! sleep where are you???

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  • I love my sleeep! I either get too much or not enough

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  • I love my sleep, but usually average 6 hours a night. I laughed about you sneaking into his room when he’s 16 and sticking your fingers up his nose to see if he liked it.

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  • I love nothing more than going into my 14 and 15 year old rooms on a Saturday or Sunday morning shouting come on it’s wake up time lol just as they did to me.
    Thanks for sharing :)

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  • I also daydream about sleep.

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  • I have been there… I am still there with my youngest, in fact.

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  • I really love your witty writing style. I know it’s a serious issue and I myself just want a decent nights sleep, rather than a light sleep, but I love the part where you confess what you would love to do when Raffety is a 16 year old wanting to sleep all the time lol. I have a little confession. I got sick of my son poking me in the arm and saying “mummy,mummy, ” in a very repetitive way after I had answered his question and he was trying to get his own way. I turned around and repetitively poked him back saying his name ( he is 8 going on 9 now) and he didn’t like it one bit. I still get the “Muuum” thing we all get, but he pokes my arm a bit less these days lol.

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  • routine for my kids was the answer,i love my sleep,but after having kids even now they are teenagers i still wake at night never sleeping straight through,there is some great websites you can look at to help

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  • I only get 6 hours a night but it is a deep sleep so i feel full of energy the next day.


    • Me too, sometimes even 5 hours a night, but it’s a good sleep and always feel refreshed the next day.

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  • Great read, I wish I slept that much!!

    Reply

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