I thought today I would share what happened in the early hours of last night. I often think parents, especially me, do a very good at making it all look just peachy and well frankly, it isn’t. They’ll be swearing in this story.
E woke last night approximately 20 minutes after her dad had come to bed. I had gone up earlier as I have a cold and was feeling pretty grim. E doesn’t sleep through the night. She used too when she was small but then we moved house and everything changed.
In two years I’ve never once lost my cool. I’ve always dealt with the situation and headed back to sleep when I can. For a little while her dad was working away, coming home maybe one weekend every two months – this was the teething months. I often look back to them and realise how hard they were and how desperate I felt but I was always calm, cool and never stressed. I just dealt with it.
Fast forward to last night, E woke with a scream which turned quickly into a tantrum. By the time I got into her room to see what was wrong she was full blown toddlering. Kicking, screaming, shouting. She wanted nothing, nothing was wrong. It wasn’t a nightmare or terror. She was just awake and pissed off about it. She stayed pissed off about for three hours.
Three fucking hours. I sang, read stories, rocked, offered water, chatted, calmed, rubbed and generally did everything I could to soothe her. But she just kept on shouting. She woke the neighbours kids and they started crying. So now it was 4am, she was still shouting and screaming and now the neighbours kids had joined in with this horrific song of the little people.
And I just broke. I got so mad that I started to cry. She really was just screamming because she was pissed off and I couldn’t help her. I looked at her and wondered what the fuck I had done wrong? I am so passionate about gentle parenting and here I am furious with a two year who just won’t stop screaming and it’s 4am.
I walked out the room, sat our bed and cried. I cried for about 5 minutes before my husband shot up awake and confused. He was so confused, his wife sobbing on the bed. E was shouting extra loud in her bedroom and the neighbours kids were crying too. He didn’t even have to ask what was wrong. He just asked how long it’s been going on. I just about whimpered that it had been three hours and he began fixing it. Within 25 minutes he had fixed everything. E was asleep and I was hugging him, still sobbing because now I felt guilty for abandoning her. ( I didn’t, I was in the next room but it was 4am and I was irrational)
E woke up at 7am like nothing had happened and life has returned to normal. Because that’s all you can do isn’t? Have a 4am sob and get on with it. She tantrums because she is 2 and she doesn’t understand her emotions and she can’t verbalise her feelings. I love her so dearly, I am so proud of her always and she is my world so it’s coffee all day and life as we know it.
She broke me a little bit but it’s ok, I’m her mum and she fixed me right back with a kiss at 7am.
It isn’t always easy but for me, it’s always worth it.
Ps. Hubs doesn’t usually do night waking as he has a very demanding job and needs his sleep. Not that I don’t but as a stay at home mum we agreed a long time ago that would take the night shifts.