Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Big Girl Pants

No, my 4 month old daughter is not potty trained...

I'm referring to me.

I've used this expression a lot lately, even though maybe I just made it up in my head. I intend it to mean that I just need to suck it up and "put on my big girl pants" and go do what I need to do instead of worrying about other things that I can not control at the moment.

I'm 7 weeks back into being a working mom and it is really the most challenging thing that I have done as of late. I feel like I've lost all of my good coping skills that I had learned when going through years of infertility. Somehow, I can't seem to translate those skills to this new environment. Maybe the sleep deprivation has something to do with it.

Here are the issues:
  1. Our babies suck at sleep, ie, the wake every 2-3 hours in the middle of the night. BabyCenter tells me that they should be sleeping much better. (Fuck you Baby Center)
  2. Our babies suck at GOING to sleep. It takes us a few hours of pacifier replacements and rocking and some feeding to get them to sleep at night. (PLEASE do not tell me to cry it out, do not tell me that I need to put them to bed earlier, or later or in a different room... blah blah blah. Just please refrain from telling me what to do. I've heard it all and I don't need your advice. I'm cranky because of the sleep deprivation, so hearing others advice might just make me even crankier. Thanks... No offense)
  3. Our babies are sleeping in their car seats... still. And every time we try to get them to sleep in their cribs, it fails. (Again, PLEASE.. no advice... we are trying)
  4. I'm working and at work I have way too much on my team's plate and we have some very near deadlines and I don't feel comfortable with everything that we have to get done.
  5. Tidy's at home with the babies where I would rather be. He's doing a great job. I'm proud of him. But he's not doing the job exactly the way I would be doing it. I know that me trying to micro manage his parenting and stay at home dad groove is NOT the direction we need to go in for the health of both of our minds and our marriage, but it just makes me wish that I was home with them too.
  6. Tidy's a stay at home dad and he doesn't outwardly seem as excited about it as I THINK that I would feel if I was staying at home. (Notice the word Think.... I can not truly say how I would feel since I don't do it.)
  7. I'm tired.. have I mentioned that?
Because of these issues, I feel like I'm not living the best life that I can be right now.When I'm at work thinking about how  my babies are doing and what I would be doing with them if I were there. When I'm at home, I'm worrying about the work my team has to accomplish and if I am motivating them enough to do the best job or communicating with them enough to give them knowledge they need to do their jobs.

And then on top of that, I realize that I am cranky a lot and I do not want to look back on this time with that haze around it. I don't want to regret missing things or not just being present when I am with my children.

Parenting is hard (No shit, you say...). Parenting twins is hard (Again, no shit). But what is even harder, in my opinion, is to stop the anger, resentment, frustration and negativity in my brain, put on my big girl pants and just accept this working mom thing as the role that I have to play in my life and play it well.

Playing it well means then that I am present at work when I am at work and present at home when I am at home. Playing it well means not getting frustrated at Tidy or at the lack of sleep I am getting and just acknowledge the two beautiful lives that are present in ours and enjoy them. Playing it well means not getting anxious that they aren't sleeping the way the "Internet" says they should be sleeping and just gently try to work towards getting there... because we will get there.... right?


Thanks for letting me vent today. I needed it.

I also desperately need a hair cut. So I'm going to do that tonight instead of worry about how many times I need to go back in and put the pacifier in my sweet M&M's little mouth.


Heather said...

Hang in there! It does get easier. I've always said that everything is a million times harder when you are sleep deprived.. I won't offer you any advice on the sleep thing (cause, really I don't have any), but I will tell you that E went thru a stage from 4 to 6 months where he was up every few hours at the least and every hour at the most. It seriously sucked, but eventually it got better. We didnt let him cry it out much either.

And also, he slept in his swing every night until he was 5 months old. He has turned out fine so far. ;-)

Hugs to you that you get some quality sleep soon.

SillyDotty said...

I remember feeling much of the same things you are feeling at this time. It WILL get easier. It will always be a little hard and stressful at different times and with different issues, but overall it will get easier. I micromanaged my husband to the point we were constantly arguing. We went to a counselor who put it this way; "Do you feel their basic needs are being met? Are they fed, changed, clean and safe?" My answer was "yes". She said to let the rest of it go. Sure, I could do a better job, they would be calmer and more content with me all the time. (I still feel that way.) But my husband does a great job and he is always trying. Looking back, I can think of a few things he even did better than me. The best option is to let the little things go and do do the best you can when you can.

Getting more sleep will change everything. And it WILL happen. There is no magic formula, time is your best friend. As they get older they will eventually sleep better.

Whenever I worried they weren't meeting the milestones I saw on the internet or my friends kids were achieving, I always reminded myself "There are no normal three year olds that can't walk, use a spoon, sit up, etc."

It will get better.

KC said...

Give yourself a break it is really freakin hard. I am actually impressed you are able to bite your tongue and keep your opinions to yourself regarding your differenes in opinoin with Tidy, I have not be so inclined. This has not made for entirely smooth sailing between the hubby and I.
Fynn used to LOVE the car seat (I think the fact that he felt secure in such a restricted space). Sometimes we just moved the car seat into the nursery until he woke up.
Life with twins (babies) gets MUCH easier once mommy gets some sleep. I always say there is a reason that sleep deprivation is used as a form of punishment and war tactic.
I know you don't want advice and I totally get it. I have been eyeing onesies from Etsy saying something along the lines of "my mommy doesn't want your advice". Everyone knows annoying! I think I mentioned it before but we used to kiss the swing goodnight, we have 4 different swings. You will get through this and it will all be a distant memory soon. Our boys are pretty good sleepers now and we did EVERYTHING the books said NOT to do. Drowsy yet awake can kiss my butt.
Love seeing your updates, you are amazing, I am so impressed that you are able to balance both worlds (even if you don't think it is going perfectly).

KC said...

Oh yeah, I HATE BabyCenter too. If I follow what they suggest then my boys are mentally and physically delayed. My doctor tells me they are right on track and when I talk to parents they seem to be right in line with their peers. Even the activities they suggest are ridiculous. I am sorry but my 8 month olds don't use Sign Language when they are hungry or sort blocks by size and colour. They also don't speak spanish or recognize They do however try to eat blocks and make farting sounds.

Nikki said...

Hang in there! It does get easier! Our saving grace for sleeping was the Nap Nanny - we are just now transitioning to cribs (at 6-1/2 months). Yeah to ignoring BabyCenter - your babies will develop on their own schedules.

JPS23 said...

THe sleep thing...Madeline slept ON US for the first 6 months. Then we got her to take naps in her bassinet (pack and play) and at 7 months and some change she was sleeping nights in her bassinet but we moved into a new home, I was way too busy to breasfeed for hours on the couch, etc so we weened her and sleep trained her all at the same time. A couple nights of 5 minute max crying (not really crying it out, I guess our own version) and she learned to put herself to sleep in her crib. That's when she started sleeping through the night and our quality of life got much better. Hang in there!

St Elsewhere said...

Oh Dear! Oh Dear!

I hear you Tippy! And I am still on the sleep-deprived turf.

Those guides about how the baby is better off sleeping at so and so age are just for reference...babies haven't written those articles, adults have!

My girl wakes up still....multiple times in a night. Or we shake the dawn hours with a little bit of playtime. She now sleeps fairly quickly though, but then she will wake up for sure.

No advice. Just take care.

Get that haircut. I dream of a long day of pampering and I know it is not happening anyday soon.

St Elsewhere said...

I forgot to add that Figlia used to sleep on my chest every night for most of the nights initially, and then I would put her down. Swaddling worked only for about four months, and then she decided she wanted to sleep free-limbed.

abcgirl said...

Every baby is different. Ignore all "shoulds" about milestones (unless you're seriously concerned about cognitive development) and just do whatever you all need to do to survive this era. For every frustration, add the phrase "for now" to help you remember that no matter how long this goes on, it will not be forever.

Jesica said...

My baby is the same! Up every 2-3 hours all night and hard to get to sleep at night. All babies are different and I'm hoping he will start sleeping better soon!

Heather said...

Sending hugs xxxx and hope you do get more sleep...

michelle said...

Hang in there. It'll get better, I promise. My twins are almost 9 mos now and I've been working full time for the last 6. It's hard, sucky and heart wrenching but it does get better albeit slowly.

Ted and Maria said...

Aw, Tippy....I wish I was there to give you a big fat hug and go get a mani pedi. Much love to you, my friend....the only thing you *ever* do is the best you can every moment. Know that. ;-)