Sunday, June 19, 2011

The Rhythm of Sleeplessness

Lily Ruth woke up around 12:30. Her daddy went in to rock and soothe her. They fell asleep in the rocker. When they woke up around 2 am, she was AWAKE, and was in dire need of a diaper change. This woke her up even more... so she came in with us.

She spent the next hour trying to go back to sleep. Sort of.

*flop*... *sigh*... (whispered) 'Mama... mamamamaMAma'... She performs her signature alligator death roll that pins my boob under her shoulder, and lands her nose to nose with me. Her thumb in her mouth. The fingers of that hand butterfly tapping my cheek. Her breath on my mouth. 'Mama' *kiss* 'Mama' *sigh*. I do my best impersonation of a log.

She tries lying on top of me. Toes wiggle across my thighs. Sweaty head turns restlessly on my chest. Tiny hands weave tightly into my hair. *sigh* She digs her toes into my legs and launches herself toward my face. Her nose lands in my mouth and I suppress a snort. She kisses my chin, pats my face and whispers 'wuff you, Mama.' *sigh*... It's just after 3 am. We've now been awake for an hour.

I ask her if she wants to try sleeping in her bed again. 'Yesh.' The two of us grab my pillow and a blanket, and head into her room. I try to snag her mattress for myself (leaving the adjacent floor mats for her), but she alligator death rolls herself into 'her' spot in the center of her bed, grabs her agua, and pulls the blanket over her shoulders. I scoot reluctantly onto the mats. She asks me to share her pillow. We move into her favorite thumb-in-mouth-fingers-on-mama's-face position. I impersonate a log again.

She taps. She flops. She sighs. She wiggles. She whisper-sings 'Chicken Monkey Duck, Chicken Monkey Duck...' I suppress another snort. I roll away from her and doze off briefly. I awake as she begins to pull my hair and yell 'Daddy!!!!'. It's now after 4 am.

We move to the rocker. Every couple of minutes she jolts and pulls at the blanket. 'Happened, Mama? Happened?' 'Nothing happened, Baby Girl. Go to sleep.' As she snuggles into me, I feel her bird-light bones and soft muscles slide smoothly under her amazing skin. I actively wish that my hands were larger so that I could feel more of her.

Gradually, her muscles go slack, and her thumb falls out of her mouth. We move back to the floor for a final round of face tapping. Her breathing begins to slow into a sleep pattern, and I almost weep with exhaustion. It's going on 4:30 am.

At 5:15 am, the dog bursts in panting agitatedly and whining. If she wakes up the baby, I will have to kill her. I pick my aching body up off the floor and move to the door to let her outside. Then I wait for her to come back in. Then I put myself to bed.

For Father's Day, my husband gets up with our daughter at 7:30 and lets me sleep until 9:30. He's officially my hero.

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