Deconstruction

I generally feel a hefty stab of guilt whenever I have a whinge here, partly because it might seem as if I am begging for virtual cuddles (and actually, I think I am) but mostly because I am starkly aware that I have nothing to moan about.  My life is peaceful and blessed, yet somewhere out there, hearts are breaking.

So, I feel… fraudulent. I’m still going to whine, you understand. I’m just not wallowing in it quite as much as usual.

Firstly, Harry has suffered a sleep meltdown, initially triggered by my bringing him to sleep with me last month when he was very poorly, and compounded when he was introduced back into his own cot upon getting over the worst. Harry has never been a fabulous sleeper, but latterly he’d got to the stage where he went down like a lamb at bedtime, and was sleeping through from 7pm to 6am, 3 nights out of 4, say. His daily nap was a little protesty at first, but generally long. The nights when he did yell, though, he tended to keep wailing on and off all night, often resulting in a bleary parent extracting him for cuddles in the rocking chair. [If you listen carefully, you will hear the sound of sleep gurus everywhere screaming No! NO! Fer the Love O’God! Not Cuddle Extraction! Maximum Danger!]

Harry was Mightily Unimpressed with spending the night alone back in his room, poor lad. I got arsey about the noise and disruption and decided that this problem boy had to be Tackled Once And For All and insisted we Get Tough. Weissbluth extinction: bring it on! I’m particularly fed up of not being able to travel outside our own (isolated, detached) home because of his sleep/screamy issues. 

Hah. Well. Since the end of last week, as a result of this method, Harry’s sleep confidence has deconstructed entirely, and he has screamed like… like… like a seethingly angry toddler, that’s who. His rages culminated all this week in at least an hour’s solid, full-on ululating protest at bedtime, and another 2-3-4 hour marathon session in the small hours. Naps became a 30 minute whimpering doze.

Secondly, John and I could not agree on a concerted technique to handle it.  Lest I make it sound as if we sat down and calmly discussed the matter: we did not. Acrimonious hisses about Giving In and Always My Turn became a blazing 3 day row. As is the nature of matrimonial rows about one topic – particularly when both parties are exhausted and stressed – it broadened in scope after a day or so of frost, and Very Hurtful Words were said.

Thirdly, this resulted in me getting shockingly upset and mortally offended (I have no idea what Hubby felt, but I expect he coped, as he’s good like that) and consequently managed to develop a headache that actually elicited proper whimpers of pain from me at one point.

And still the child screamed.  

Oh, and the internet connection started to play silly buggers, too. I was alone. Alone, dammit!

Might I remind you that this all occurred after a fortnight in which Harry fell into the stinging nettles, grabbed an electric fence, got whacked hard in the mouth, had a rotten virus, and his poor little tongue rotted away into raw meat?

I veered between feeling sadly sorry for myself (stressed, headachey, sleep-deprived and spousally-wounded) and sorry for my child; tormented with guilt that my poor little boy was suffering miseries because he wanted to be snuggling close to me, and I was selfishly denying him. That little voice of reason piping up that, Cough! Actually, Harry has never co-slept, merely co-rampaged… ummm, yeah… hard to hear clearly when it’s 4am, the clamour’s been going since 1am, and the parental duvet is being yanked back and forth in a silent, leg-lashing huff.

Anyhoo… the tough technique is doing… something. He yelled a fair while at bedtime, but slept through all last night. This restorative has repaired our collective marital sanity sufficiently to actually patch up the rift. He went down promisingly for a nap at 11am today, but after a few quiet minutes some uncharacteristic-sounding whimpers (and I’ve heard ’em all lately) turned out, upon investigation, to be the result of a cataclysmically (I use the word advisedly) dirty nappy, trousers and cot-sheet. Way to go, son! He yelled for 15 minutes at bedtime tonight – a distinct improvement – and has been quiet since. We shall see.

Just to ensure I give you a full picture of the week’s stress at Hairy Mansions, I felt my left uterus start to twitch and pull in a way I was pretty sure I recognised the night before last. I am 10 days past ovulation, or vaguely thereabouts. However, I think I managed to scare any prospective inhabitant off nicely, as I managed to send my pulse above 170 at the gym yesterday, merely by jogging for a single minute, and I haven’t felt a uterine twinge since. The peesticks – on which I can always see lines generally not visible to the naked eye – say no, too. I am not surprised, and, on the basis of my current fatness, rather relieved. Deliberately beginning pregnancy at 15 stone is a very silly undertaking, believe me. I finished the last one at 15st 7lbs, and was embarrassingly unable to reach my own bottom with loo roll for the last fortnight of it.  

While I am on the topic of things that make me mildly embarrassed: I asked John to find me a comfy saddle this evening (my [ancient] bike currently boasts a thinly-padded razor blade) so that we can go cycling this summer. Heady breezes, weight-loss, summer scents, happy toddler, wild flowers, country lanes, etc etc. The first four words of the item he has located for me made me wonder, sadly, what (accurate) search terms he must have entered.

Mind you, as long as it does what it says on the tin, I don’t care. I need the exercise. I have just re-started myself at the gym, having gained a FULL STONE since the start of December, when I was determined to, you know, lose weight. I’m so angry with myself! I can lose this weight – once I get going. I know I can, because I’ve done it twice before. Of course… that fact in itself does rather tell you something about my lifestyle and the way I feel about food. Easter! Chocolate! Sigh.

On a vaguely related note, thank you enormously for all your fabulous-looking recipe suggestions. Many look promising. It’s not until the first Saturday in May, so the fact that I haven’t collected A. Single. Thought. about the event yet hopefully doesn’t actually matter.  

Yawn. Beddy-byes time. I hope you’re all well; my inbox and blog feeds are quietly reproaching me. Tomorrow…

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