This too shall pass… this too shall pass… this too shall pass…
1:00am – The dummy falls out of our newest Illiterate Infants mouth as she finally succumbs to sleep. There’s no tears with this one, no screaming with pain, just 2 hours after a feed of the dark eyes peering at me through the dim light thrown from the TV.
I tap a few more times for good measure… thud… thud… thud… on the tightly stretched wrap. I get up from the couch, move her gently into the basinet, set my alarm and fall into bed. I mentally hand the controls over to Mrs II who will look after the overnight shift.
4:00am – Miss 2.5 (aka ver1.0) wakes crying. This is new. She used to sleep straight through but I suspect the new addition and a slight cold have contributed to her waking at 4am for the 5th morning this week. I stumble into her room, find “mummy teddy” and put her blanket on, then put Miss 2.5’s on.
tap… tap… tap… and we’re peaceful again. I ask is she’s alright. “Yes daddy. Love you”. I can hear her blowing me a kiss. Early morning forgiven. I stumble back to bed and listen for ver2.0 – she’s still asleep – all good.
5:30am – I can here her straining against the wrap. No tears yet just little baby “arrrrgh”, “ummmmmph” and the licking of lips as she makes it clear that it’s time for another feed. Mrs II gets up and handles it – I look at the red light on my clock and do the mental maths to calculate how many minutes sleep I have left until the alarm goes off. I’m working locally today so I get 87 minutes if I fall asleep now. Make that 86 minutes…
6:30am – I hear something little straining against a wrap again. I start to rollover towards Mrs II and feel a hand on my should pushing me back. I open my eyes and Miss ver 2.0 is there, centre of the bed as Mrs II tries to settle her again, tap… tap… tap… I get out of bed, turn off the alarm that never had the chance to fire and take Miss ver2.0 out to the lounge room. We sit down together pretty much exactly where we did 5 hours ago and I tap. tap.. tap… tap… No tears as her eyes start to close.
7:00am – I put ver2.0 back to bed and get in the shower. Day started.
8:30am – coffee
10:30am – coffee
3:00pm – tappity, tappity, tappity as I work. I’m in a zone which I know will quickly disappear. It’s hard to focus on anything for too long when you’ve had 4 hours sleep… again. The phone buzzes with the “please tell me you’re home early tonight” message. Mrs II is at home with both of them, both of them crying. I prepare for M*A*S*H* when I get in.
4:00pm – Home early. There’s tears in one set of eyes, a manic look in an others and an angry look in the last. I take the manic looking eyes to the park to run of some steam. The teary eyes stay and try to cheer up the angry eyes.
7:30pm – Miss 2.5 in bed, blows a kiss… “love you Mummy, love you Daddy”
8:30pm – Miss ver2.0 feeds, grumbles, feeds, grumbles tries to sleep, fails… tap… tap… tap…
10:30pm …tap… tap… tap… time for another feed. Still no sleep. Feeds, grumbles, feeds, grumbles tries to sleep, fails… tap… tap… tap…
12:30am – Exhaustion wins. I put her down in the crib and set the alarm. 6am this time. 329 minutes sleep if I fall asleep right now… 328… 327… 326…
How was your first two weeks?
For those of you at the Digital Parents conference this week – have an awesome time… and be gentle on those Tackle Nappy Boys and Reservoir Dad – they’re a sensitive lot.
Sharing my Tuesday with Jess at essentiallyjess.com. Because she’s lovely.
You have captured those first two week perfectly. Well, as far the newborn part goes, I haven’t had the joy of including ver1.0 in the scenario yet!
I hope ver2.0 figures out the sleeping and night/day cycles for you soon, those first few weeks certainly are tough, but as you say at the beginning, this too shall pass. Not that it’s much comfort in the present!
Wish you were coming to DPCON too!
Cheers kylez. Wish I was going as well – but it’s a good trade.
Oh, how did I miss this exciting news! Congratulations and this too shall pass. x
There is light at the end of the tunnel. Hoping you all get some sleep soon. x
Hang in there Kev, it gets better! 🙂
You’ve got this Kev.. you’ve got this! You are doing just fine on little sleep, it can only get better.
Cheers Soph – always nice to have your positive perspective!
Good luck Kev. We never got those “first two weeks”. DD came home at 22 days. The one thing I can say is having her early and her being in special care meant she came home on a routine. Which wasn’t a bad thing.
We had friends in a similar position – a tough way to get into a routine. Thanks for popping in
Yes you’ve captured it perfectly. Isn’t sleep deprivation hell. I hope you got your coffee machine
Hi Karen – failed on the coffee machine – can only hope 😉
Oh man you’ve brought back some memories! It’s a wonder we’re able to accomplish anything on that little sleep. Lucky they are so absolutely delicious otherwise we would go completely insane wouldn’t we? Here’s hoping you and Mrs II manage to get some good sleep soon xx
Yup. I get ya. You’ll be ok. Just hang in there.
You’ve brought it all back to me! Grace started waking in the night after Cerys was born – I think that having a new baby and the noise from me pottering around doing the night feeds unsettled her, sure your big girl will get used to it.
Please tell Mrs II that it does get better. Balancing the needs of a toddler and a baby is really tough, especially in the early days. I thought I would lose my mind (maybe I did a bit) but we all survived. Here are the things that worked for me: using a sling so that Cerys could sleep when we were out at the park (I did this every day from day 3 – I even leant to carry G on my hip while C was in the sling – don’t recommend it though!). Activities like baking are great to do at home while baby sleeps, but really engaging for the toddler and… you get cake! TV is a godsend. I remember feeling bad that G was watching lots of TV, but its just a phase… and it works when you’ve got to get stuff done.
I know you didn’t ask for tips, so hope you don’t mind the unsolicited advice – I just really felt for Mrs II when I read this.
These are great tips – cheers Catherine. We’ve been talking about a few of these things already and discussing the how much TC is being watched – very timely
These are great tips Catherine, I am writing them down for when my time comes! I’ve been investigating baby carriers as I figure it’s he only way ill be able to deal with two at once!
Our V1.0 didn’t have any sleep problems but he did turns into the worlds biggest whinger when his new sister came home! Visiting from the IBOT Linky….
I’m a bit late to the party – but a huge congratulations to you and the rest of the II family!
My first two weeks usually involve somewhere between 2-4 hours of non-consecutive sleep a night because of feeding problems. But we all get through in the end. You’re right, this too shall pass… and then you’ll be missing the (daytime) sleepy baby phase 😉
I don’t remember the first 2 weeks. Actually, it’s coming back to me. I was so excited to be in hospital because I could have a break from my 16 month old! Ha! Unfortunately, my 16 month old was terribly sick the week the baby came home. Anyway, eventually it gets easier, then harder, then easier again. Remember to take lots of photos… I didn’t take nearly as many for my 2nd and I regret it x
I know Mrs II is really aware of the photo thing. It’s harder when you don’t have as much free time to just sit and ogle your newborn.
This is such a reality check for me, as we are expecting V2.0 soon. Those early weeks are so hard, and with an active toddler to boot! Hope you get some more sleep soon!
Oh Kevin. My kids are 13 and 9 but I STILL remember the first few months. Like it was yesterday. I feel your exhaustion. It will get better though! Honestly it will …. probably … maybe …
Hang in there!
Leanne @ Deep Fried Fruit
Oh Kev – I remember those days and i feel for you – and Mrs II – ugh. Hang in there man – just take one day at a time. You’ve done it before you can do it again 🙂
My #1 girl is two in a few days, and my #2 girl is 20 weeks. I feel your sleep deprivation! It gets better, though 4mo brings new challenges. Thankfully #2 enjoys sleeping a lot more than #1 did. We found that reassuring #1 that if she heard #2 crying in the night to tell herself ‘it’s ok, Mummy and Daddy are looking after her’ and go back go sleep seemed to work. Tell your lovely wife that ABC2 is your friend, and the washing can sod off. 🙂
Just when I thought I really wanted a baby… Jokes. I still want one, but not looking forward to the first few months as much! Hope baby 2.0 is sleeping at longer intervals now!
Hi Kevin. Those early weeks sure are difficult. But to be honest, Eve is now 6 months, and I can barely remember them. It changes so quickly – life is so busy. I think for me the predominant experiences were pain (sympathies to Mrs II) and the grief I felt about the change in relationship with my older girl. Hope it all gets easier soon, and you come out of the haze.