Night Growler

“Night Growler”–that would be me.

For the last five nights, Julianna has been getting us up 4-5 times a night. This is especially irksome to me because Nicholas began sleeping through the night—genuinely sleeping through, till 5 or 6 a.m.—only about a week before his roommate decided to become a nocturnal being. So, for the past week, I’ve been up with Christian, who got deathly ill; with Alex, who wanted to be put back in bed after using the bathroom; but mostly with the inhabitants of the northwest bedroom. Julianna howls because she’s thirsty. She howls because her diaper is wet. She howls, mostly, because she woke up and wants everyone else to be as miserable as she is.

And she succeeds, because she wakes Nicholas up. Who then wails and has to be nursed back to sleep.

I’ve gotten so mad, the last two nights, that this morning when I went out to run at 7:05 a.m., I wanted to go into the room and scream in her ear, and then walk out, just so she’d know how it felt to be rudely yanked from your already insufficient rest.

During the day, she tries hard to make up for it by being unbelievably cute…peeking around banisters, getting up into standing from a bear crawl and walking toward you, asking for hugs, giggling…

It works with Daddy.

It’s beginning to wear thin on me.

The hardest part of all is that I really don’t know how much she’s able to understand. She’s nearly 2 ½—she’s only shy by about 6 weeks—but she’s so far behind in so many areas that I can’t even pinpoint her developmental age. Is she capable of understanding me when I say, “That’s it. No more. Go to sleep. I’m not coming back in again”? And complicating the trouble is that I desperately want her roommate to stay asleep, so how can I just walk out and let her cry? He’s pretty good about sleeping through the first round of bad behavior, but after 15 or 20 minutes, he wakes up. Grr!

I thought if I gave her plenty of fluids before bed, she wouldn’t get thirsty…but then she gets drenched and has to be changed. I thought maybe she was teething—she’s still got  two gaps on the lower gum—so I gave her ibuprofen before bed, but she woke up anyway.

When we chose to have another baby so soon after our developmentally delayed child, I knew there would be challenges, particularly in the baby stage. I could list a bunch of them ahead of time. This one, however, I didn’t anticipate.

Well, I cling to this thread of hope. She threw up this morning, so maybe she’s been waking up because she was ramping up into the stomach bug that took out all the men in the family. This makes me the only holdout. Just watch, I’ll get it Monday when Christian has to go back to work.

I’m a regular cheery-oh today, aren’t I?