Wednesday, October 11, 2006
a journal entry online (basically that's what this is!)
Someone said something to me yesterday that has me thinking. "You are a brave woman to have your kids this close together." I never thought of it that way. In fact, I used to hate comments like that. Instead of being brave, I just figured I was selfish. Pregnancy takes toll on the body but so far I have had great success bouncing back to normal in many ways. My reasoning for having them so close was kind of selfish. My husband and I wanted to get it done! Since I have never completely been out of the baby phase, it's never a shocker when a newborn comes along. I'm still in my mode, I'm still rockin' along! Well last night at 3am when my twenty-one month old woke up screaming at the top of her lungs for the fourth night in two weeks, I decided that I am BRAVE. The night time hours have not been pleasant lately and I only have about three months left before our baby boy, Ezekiel will be born. This should be the time I am getting sleep, not losing it! Right? Not only has my daughter been cutting teeth and suffering the pain in the middle of the night but my son, who will be four in January, is also waking up in the middle of the night. We have tried everything to get him to stay in his room all night long but no matter what, I always wake up to a little boy on the couch. At this point I am just glad he is getting on the couch instead of coming to our room. But last night, he came to our room because Ava Beth woke him up! Sleep around my house has been hard to find lately and I am starting to get grumpy.

When a married couple has their first baby, they really are clueless. They have no idea how a newborn will change every single aspect of their home. The sex life, social life, the day to day everything will change. (No I am not saying SEX is a part of day to day living!) At least NOT with a newborn around! Something I know now is that you have to communicate your expectations to your spouse BEFORE the baby gets here. Figure it out now! Jeremy and I never talked about it and most new parents don't. So much energy is being put into the up coming birth of the baby that you never stop to say, "Hey, let's talk about when the baby wakes up in the middle of the night." The husband works, the wife stays home, does this give him free nights during the week or does he see that staying at home is a job too and you need rest just as much? That's a loaded question! If this is the first, you can obviously sleep while baby sleeps but if this is the second or third or fourth, sleep will be rare unless you time it just right! Jeremy and I have already had the conversation about baby Zeke. I will get up in the night since I am going to attempt breast feeding again but if I choose to go to formula (something that I won't hesitate to do! We are all moms, just some breastfeed and some don't.), he will do it on the weekends (at least one night of the weekend). That's what we did with Ava Beth and it worked so the plan is in place for the third child!

(FYI- I will not publish any comments regarding your feelings on breastfeeding so don't even go there! This is not what this post is about. Here is a clear, set, defined boundary for you to respect.)

The biggest conflict in our home comes from lack of sleep. Some of the worst arguments between me and Jeremy have happened during those months of sleepless nights. So far I have been VERY blessed and my babies have gotten on a schedule before or right at the three month mark. In our house the three month mark is something we celebrate! There is a book I am an avid fan of that shows you exactly how to get your newborn on a schedule and for us, it works! This is why Mommy and Daddy's eyes are a little brighter and things start to get back to normal at twelve weeks!

But, Jeremy and I need prayer! His job is physically demanding and he needs sleep. Unless we sleep in different rooms, which will never happen, he will always be woken up by the baby. Last night Ava Beth's cry woke him up too because it was in the monitor. She also woke Josiah up last night. This got me thinking about Ezekiel and when he wakes up in the middle of the night. Jeremy will wake up, loose sleep and possibly have to tend to one of the other kids. Juggling two is nothing! Juggling one is EASY! But juggling three? WOW. How is this going to work? Once again, I am a rookie! Three kids, yes I am a brave woman.

Ava Beth turns two on December 22nd, Josiah turns four on January 7th and this baby will be born sometime around January 22nd unless he sends me in to labor sooner! So YES! I am a brave woman! I know there are those women out there that have them even closer together than I have and they seem fine to me. They are survivors! It will be an adjustment, it will be a challenge and we will loose sleep. The loss of sleep is inevitable but I am praying that things will not take too much of a toll on my relationship with Jeremy.

I talk to a family member this week that does not have children. She talks about her marriage a lot and how wonderful it is. I believe her. I see that it is wonderful when I am around them. They desire to have a children but so far it has happened yet. I am not sure if she would ever share this with me but I wonder how much she longs to step over on the other side and experience all that I have. But at the same time I wonder if she realizes how much her relationship with her husband will change. I am not saying that it has to be a bad thing, your marriage doesn't have to suffer a severe blow. However, the marriage will change. They have never had to beg their husband or have their husband beg them to a change the diaper at 3am in the morning! They have never had sleep constantly taken away! They have never had to experience their sex life being totally transformed! There are LOTS of things they have not discussed and fussed and fighted over. But, it will happen. A baby changes everything!

Today I am going to a counseling appointment. Before I go, I usually have gotten my thoughts together and really prayed about what I want to focus on. I like to make that hour a success and I don't want to talk in circles. But I am exhausted, completely and totally pooped. Maybe that's when God can work best. Maybe that's when I can be totally honest and open about how I am feeling. Jeremy and I had a argument last night or should I say this morning at 3am. It wasn't a good one, it was not one I care to remember. Today I am tired and I am sad about our argument. It kind of grieves me in a way. It's all due to a lack of sleep and since I know that there are many more nights to come when baby Ezekiel gets here of NO SLEEP, I am not feeling brave. I am feeling kind of scared. In a lot of ways, this third baby is just now really hitting me. I have not even started on his nursery. The other two had finished nurseries at this point and I have not even started on his. Honestly, I am too tired. My life is centered around my other two kids and taking care of my home and husband. But soon, it will be about four people instead of three needing me. Every mom feels this way, every single one.

Maybe it's the lack of sleep that is making me so emotional today but I need prayer. So, send a HUGE shout out up to our heavenly Father for this tired Mama! I need energy today. Can you believe I am taking both kids to get my hair done at my mom's salon? Well, I have to. No sitter! A Moms gotta do what a moms gotta do! I would much rather go for a massage or pedicure but that would require a babysitter too! :) I am also having a baby shower this weekend at my house for my future sister-in-law AND I am doing all the food, the cake, everything. I want to, I love doing all of it but I need an extra boost to get it done. Prayer will do it, I know it will!

Pray for my sweet husband too. I am sure he is needing some strength today at UPS! Brown can't do anything for you when brown is tired!

  posted at 10:36 AM
  12 comments



12 Comments:
At 11:13 AM, Anonymous Wendy said...

I know what you mean about lack of sleep and how that can magnify everything and make us quicker w/our words and regret them later. Getting little sleep can be one of the hardest things about being a mom because it effects everything else and those around us.

I will be praying for your appointment today and your energy in general.

You will be great w/3 kids! God will give you the grace you need as you take it a day at a time and lean on Him.

 
At 11:28 AM, Blogger keri said...

we, too, have lots of conflict over lack of sleep...we turn into monsters if we are woken up in the middle of the nite...its such a weak time for everyone, emotionally, you know!? so sorry you haven't had good sleep lately. i guess a few interruptions at a time can only help prepare your body for those every 3 hour feedings that are coming soon!
hope your counseling appt. went well. i'm such a fan of counseling!!

 
At 11:48 AM, Blogger Paula said...

First I have to say, I love you!! God has created a beautiful friendship here.
Second, I wish I was there to cry with you.
Third, you are a wonderful mama. Ezekiel was in God's plans, so He will make away. Yes, there will be sleep lost, but He will be there to comfort you, give you rest when needed and a boost of energy when needed. I will be praying for all.
Fourth, I needed you about a month ago when Colton woke up in the middle of the night. Let me just say at wee hours in the morning Chris and I had a not so nice argument too. Sleep depravation is a VERY WICKED thing. I believe it is straight from hell. Satan can really work on a marriage and family when you are lacking sleep. That is when we need to be on our guard and pray! pray! pray!

 
At 11:51 AM, Blogger Munchkin Land said...

Oh Mandi. You are in my thoughts and prayers. I know too well those fights inspired by lack of sleep. It is hard, hard, hard work to make your marriage a priority when tending to the needs of our offspring. (I may be coming to you for help in the near future...) But I couldn't agree more, communication is so key during those first few months. Even now that Devyn is 23 months old, I still find myself getting upset over something Jon has/has not done but yet, I've never expressed my desire or need to him. It's a good reminder that we can't read each other's minds. Good luck today...

 
At 11:59 AM, Blogger Life full of blessings said...

Hi Amanda,
I hear you on the pooped out thing! Having precious little ones are a lot of work....but as you well know, God's supply of wisdom and strength is NEVER ending :) We must draw from it continually throughout our busy days....
A fellow prego mamma :)
Liz

 
At 1:09 PM, Blogger Stacey said...

Thanks for sharing sister! You ARE a brave woman and I am so proud to know you!
We had our two close together as well (less than a year apart.) We have been desperately trying for #3 for 2 years. Ahhh, the difficulties when God has a plan very different from your own!!!

We have also had similar night time difficulties lately. No teething but both the kids wake up at like 4am and come in our room, in our bed and jump/kick/wrestle us to get a spot on the bed. And then they don't just lie still. They squirm all 'night'. We just instituted a new rule: In the morning you have to stay in your own bed until Mommy comes to get you.
So far, it is not really working because they are heading to each other's rooms and then off to terrorize the rest of the house. BUT, at least they aren't coming in our room....right?

Lol!!!

Have a great day, hun. :)

 
At 4:25 PM, Blogger Christina said...

I came across your blog a few weeks ago and just wanted to say thank you for being so open and real. I'm very tired of people pretending to be perfect when we all know that no one really is.

My sons are 18 months apart, 2 1/2 and 14 months. My oldest sleeps very well but my youngest still gets up at night - sometimes as much as 5 times. Sleep deprivation is too much for me. I wanted such a large family but I don't feel like I can because the lack of sleep is to hard.

You are brave and you are strong. I don't know you personally but I can tell you have had to overcome so much and with number 3 almost here....you'll do great.

One thing I find that helps me is I pray right when I get up and I read from my bible. When I start my day this way I feel like I can handle anything.

I prayed for you and your husband. I know all too well how easy it is to turn on eachother because of loss sleep.

God Bless,
Christina

 
At 5:50 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The comment about Josiah waking up and sleeping on the couch made me smile - Chase used to do that too - and now DJ does it ;o))

As far as having 3 kids - you will be fine I am sure - I remember talking to my OB when I was pregnant with DJ and, my Doctor at the time had 3 girls - he said with two kids it was easy b/c you are ONE on ONE still - they don't out number you - but THREE or more - he said then you have to move to a ZONE defense ;o)) - I thought that was a cute and intersting way of view parenting more than 2 - LOL......

Thanks for your sharing your thoughts ;o))

And I know you don't need me to tell you - BUT you will do just great when Zeke gets here!

Nancy

 
At 6:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I absolutely love that book you told me to go and get...it has given me soo much confidence that I too can be a mommy. Sometimes I feel so lost within the baby world..

Cara

 
At 7:40 AM, Blogger Dee said...

Sleep deprivation --- the wonderful world of being a mommy!!!! It never ends - but God saw fit to bless us with these bundles and will also bless us with the energy to manage. Shawn and I have had many conflicts over the very same things -- and sometimes it is just that we are too quick to anger because we are tired. Of course, Satan is sitting on the sidelines LOVING it. I will be praying - this too shall pass, but in the midst, I know it is terribly frustrating.

As for your couch sleeper -- I have one and he is 5!!!!!! I gave up - you know, choosing my battles. He IS sleeping through the night, just at some point he comes to the couch (for mine, most likely after he goes to the potty) --- I tried to fight it for a while, but I just don't see the point. All too soon, he will be living on his own and I will give anything for him to sleep on my couch!

I hope your counseling appointment went well. I believe that a great Christian counselor is one of the greatest tools God gives us for home/family/self management.

I love you -- and am praying! Call me when you get time!! ((((Hugs))))

 
At 8:10 AM, Anonymous Tiffany said...

Amanda,

I keep thinking of this scripture,

"...the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express." (Romans 8:26)

I love you and am praying the Spirit will give your heart keen discernment today...you are a BLESSING to your husband, your children and your friends. That is TRUTH! :)

Always,
Tiffany

 
At 7:08 AM, Blogger Amy said...

I felt myself nodding over and over reading this entry. You are so talented at expressing these feelings. I'm only pregnant with my second, but I have so many of the same feeings as you do...thanks for sharing!

 

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