To Sleep or not to sleep

That really IS the question.

It’s a no brainer.  Really.  At first thought, who would choose no sleep over sleep!? A crazy person? Or perhaps a Mommy that really misses her boy when he’s with his Dad for a week.  Seven long days.

I actually had 2 weeks of uninterrupted sleep, could do what I wanted, when I wanted.  No changing of pull ups, no excess laundry, no toys to trip over.  All this bliss and I was miserable.

I didn’t even really sleep in when I wanted, my body just naturally woke me up at stupid times on the weekend.  I begged, pleaded with my brain.  Please stop thinking about work, about the tasks you need to do at home, and how much you miss your boy.

So fast forward to the first week I have Mason back and I’ve barely gotten any sleep.  Working full time as a single Mom is exhausting.  I have a small window of maybe ½ hr to come online, check email and plan the weekends before the focus is back on the wee child for part of the evening routine.

I start off saying the *same* thing every night.   “WE are going to bed early tonight!”.  I go into a long rant on how it took him forever to stop bouncing, yapping, pleading, negotiating and declaring ‘Me not sleepy!”.  The time difference makes it look worse than it is but 10pm is not a 3 year old's bed time.  It’s not really even my bed time!  In the morning I have to deal with a somewhat cranky little man who struggles to wake up and sometimes says "No wake up!". 

Geez, I wonder why you are so tired..?

I am not sure when it changed.  Some time ago Mason would be put to bed…in his own bed at 9pm every night.  He would babble for a while and then go to sleep.  Sometimes he'd wake up from a bad dream and cry for me.  he'd end up in my bed because ignoring him while he whined and fake cried would just annoy me and jolt me awake.  Then neither of us would get sleep!

Perhaps he senses my maternal instinct to cuddle, run my fingers through his hair, sing songs softly and listen to his little sighs, yawns and that moment he finally succumbs to the Sand Man.  While I don't encourage it, part of me is glad when he runs to my room for bedtime story.  I still have typical Mom fears of something bad happening if he's not near me when I sleep.  He's going to stop breathing, a blanket will be wrapped around his neck, someone will break into the room and steal him while I am off in a slumber.  Ridiculous things but they are very real to me. 

The first night I would get him back, he would be in my bed.  This was for my own selfish reasons.  I needed to be near him.  Then somehow on Thursday I would realize that he was in my bed every night.  I would coax him to sleep in his own bed and would end up listening to him explain why he just couldn’t sleep there.  It wasn’t comfy, he didn’t like it, the bed was yucky, there are monsters, dragons, the closet, under the bed.  I even tried camping out in his room, on my futon mattress beside his bed but after him protesting for over an hour, I finally gave in and he snuggled up next to me and instantly fell asleep.

Now I am definitely not against co-sleeping.  I think it’s a natural part of parenthood and I would never judge any parent for wanting to sleep with their child.  I personally believe it strengthens the relationship between parent and child and breaks that barrier when they are teens and are embarrassed to be seen with their parents.  But there comes a time when I just want to stretch out, rest my head on my WHOLE pillow and be comfortable.  A stark difference from having an elbow or knee to the back, legs draped over mine or a little face inches from mine.

My sleeping in his room failed.  I had to come up with something different.  So I blamed the toddler bed and put it up for sale.  I scoured Craigslist for the perfect twin bed and finally found a Pine loft bed.  PERFECT!  Something ‘cool’.  A bed up top and a playhouse at the bottom.  Oh but it didn’t stop there.  Nooooo.  He needed a whole new bedroom.  Literally.  So I purchased a vertical bookcase and laid it on the floor to make ‘garages’ for his trucks.  Then armed with a measuring tape, I surveyed his room only to determine that it was a bit on the small size for these new pieces of furniture.

I walked into my bedroom which is a very large size and while I have three pieces of furniture (Queen bed + nightstand + bureau) the room was quite empty.  I then knew my plan of action.

Switch rooms.

Easy right? Maybe for two people..or a team of movers.  But no, this SuperMommy had to do it all by herself.  I packed the entire pine bed all in pieces with hardware from the woman’s house to my car to my home down 4  staircases and into my house.  I still have the bruises on my arms from carrying the ‘lumber’.  It took almost 8 hours to clear my room, dismantle my bed, move all the furniture (heavy furniture) to the living room and then move all of Mason’s furniture + toys into my old room.  The second day I moved the closets.  The third day I tidied and got it ready for Mason’s arrival home from vacation.  I couldn’t WAIT to show him!

The last two pieces I needed were a mattress and I quickly learned that second hand crib mattresses are a LOT cheaper than twin mattresses.  I bought a 2nd hand crib mattress almost 2 years ago.  It was clean, no rips and was barely slept on.  Okay, it was a bit springy…maybe that’s why he hated his bed.  I abandoned buying another used mattress since Vancouver is all up in arms about bedbugs.  Plus Mason is growing and I don’t want to wreck his little back by cheaping out.  So I scoured the internet and found a great deal on a new mattress (no box spring needed) at Sears.  I just had to wait 9 fricken days for it to arrive at the warehouse.  Why? NO clue.  I complained on the Sears FB page.  I could understand if I lived in a remote area and it had to be shipped but surely Vancouver has a warehouse or two these mattresses already live in. 

So now I have a brand new mattress ordered, a cool bed ready and a potty training toddler.  New mattress + pee = = :(   Mason still wears pull-ups over night even though he’s 99% dry each morning but do I want to risk it?  I still have bad feelings about ex husbands cat attacking my brand new mattress and leaving holes in it.  Then being a brand new Mom that did not realize how much babies spit up + leaky diapers and my mattress had been christened.  I purchased a mattress cover and tested it out one night but it was the wrong material and Mason's temperature sky rocketed.  I panicked because he’s so heat sensitive.  He overheats and we have months of eczema to deal with!  Bye bye mattress cover.

So I went back to the Internets to find an alternate solution and stumbled upon the “Oops sheet!”.  A complete mattress saver.  I looked at the price and was a bit hesitant.  However it was a small cost to pay to save a brand new mattress and with it being washable was better than relying on pull ups.  They had a 30 day money back guarantee that I had to fall back onto in case we had the heat issues again.  I also bought at the right time because I got free shipping + no tax.  Woohoo!

I pick up the mattress tomorrow and then we'll see if Mason will sleep in his ultra cool bed or if I'll wimp out and want the cuddles.

To be continued..

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