Sleep

I’m beginning to think my skills as a mother are directly related to how well my girls sleep. And let me remind you, they sleep really crappy.

Last night Eric stopped home from the hospital for dinner around 5:30pm, which was nice as he ate dinner with us, but he had to go back in around 7pm as he was on call, and didn’t get back home for the night until 10:30pm. Meaning, I was on my own for bedtime with the girls. Normally in these cases I give Nora (5) the iPad and let her watch something while I read to Nadia (4) and get her settled. Then once Nadia is sleeping I comfort Nora a bit before she falls asleep. Well, Nadia being so difficult in general lately, was not having bedtime last night. I started around 7pm when Eric left. At 8:45pm Nadia was still jumping on her bed screaming that she did NOT want to sleep in her bed. She wanted to lay in my lap all night while I rocked her. But yeah, that wasn’t going to work. Nora kept coming into Nadia’s room, asking when I’d be in with her. So basically they were both crying/complaining until late. I gave up at 9pm, exhausted and utterly frustrated. I can’t be in both their bedrooms at once, so I moved their sleeping area to the lower level family room. I laid down their comfy mats, threw them each a pillow and told them to sleep. Nora was out pretty quickly. Nadia had trouble still, as I think she has horrible allergies on top of all her other issues. I gave her Children’s Xyzal and quickly after that she was sleeping. Of course around 2am Nora woke crying, probably noticing she was in a strange place for sleep… I frantically ran to the basement as I didn’t want her to wake Nadia. Which meant I fell asleep on the floor between them until my alarm went off at 6:30am. At least we got some sleep I guess. But what do I do tonight? Keep them together again?? Have them try sharing a bedroom again? Ugh.

Fall

It’s officially fall. I think… Feels like fall here anyway, only 61F today. So certainly not cold, but definitely sweater weather!

I don’t have a lot of updates on Nadia’s health. Yesterday was her four-year well-child exam. And they confirmed my fear. She is losing weight, about 10% of her total body weight although wants to eat all the time. Even wakes in the middle of the night to eat. They ordered some blood tests, but I still need to take her for the blood draw. She got 2 vaccinations yesterday, plus the flu shot, so I felt like that was enough for one day… Otherwise her health is the same. She is still having lots and lots of meltdowns, lots of sensory processing issues, some OCD tendencies, still says she feels “wet” whenever she goes to the bathroom. She used to wipe and wipe and wipe, now she refuses to wipe at all, says that makes her feel like she has to go potty. Eric talked to his partners and they decided to try Ditropan. Per WebMD, Oxybutynin is used to treat certain bladder and urinary conditions (e.g., overactive bladder). It relaxes the muscles in the bladder to help decrease problems of urgency and frequent urination. Oxybutynin belongs to a class of drugs known as antispasmodics. So far I have noticed she asks to go to the bathroom less, which in itself is helpful, as every trip to the bathroom leads to a meltdown.

Aside from the weight loss, Nadia often complains large areas of her body itch, although we see no evidence of a rash or other irritant. And if you Google those two symptoms, scary stuff comes up. So for now, I’ll wait for the blood test results. We are also still waiting on the pediatric psychiatric referral. Our insurance denied our pediatrician’s request for us to be seen in Iowa City, but approved for us to be seen in Des Moines at Blank Children’s Hospital. I’m not as familiar, as we are in Iowa City all the time, but it will have to do. We will also see a developmental pediatrician there to screen for more general issues… whatever those are… I’m guessing Autism and such, which I don’t even want to think about right now.

Nadia still isn’t sleeping well. Which means the entire family isn’t sleeping well. I can get her to sleep, by rocking her. It’s now her only way of falling asleep. She does not like her bed, does not want to sleep in any bed, and certainly doesn’t want any covers if I can get her into bed, which is usually me laying her in bed after she falls asleep rocking. Getting Nadia to sleep though isn’t the biggest issue. It’s keeping her sleeping. She wakes several times a night, and almost always exactly at 4am. What the heck is with 4am?? And no matter how I’ve tried, she won’t put herself back to sleep. Although neither will Nora, so perhaps it’s a me issue. At this point I don’t care how any of us sleep, just that we sleep!

In other news, Nora seems to be adjusting to kindergarten well. Every morning she says she doesn’t want to go, but walks in without crying and seems excited to tell me about her day at pickup. Nadia is not adjusting to preschool well, big surprise. This morning she cried so hard I thought she might be hyperventilating. She says she doesn’t like the teachers. But I know the teachers, they are awesome, Nora even thought so… Nadia just doesn’t like being away from me, but to the extreme. I’m anxious for her referral appointment so we can talk about Nadia’s anxiety. Wonder where she gets it…

Life is slowing getting back into a routine. I’m back in Grove (Women’s Bible Study) on Tuesday mornings and MOPs (Moms of Preschools) on Thursday mornings. Nadia has speech and occupational therapy on Wednesday mornings, and both the girls have ballet on Thursday nights, although so far Nadia hasn’t been brave enough to attend. We’ll see, I’ll try again with her this week. I now have plenty of time to clean and organize the house, but God knows I’m awful at procrastinating. The laundry is staring at me right now… I emailed an interior designer that one of Eric’s partners used for their new home. I’m a little scared. An interior decorator sounds so… expensive. But I honestly have no clue where to begin on purchasing furniture for this house. The help would certainly be appreciated, if even for only a few main rooms. Below are pictures of Nadia’s bedroom curtains and bedding, my attempts at picking a paint color. I think I decided on Intimate White, which is number 8 on the paint samples. Oh, and the house we just moved from is going on the market TODAY, so let’s pray it sells quickly!

We went to a pumpkin patch on Saturday. Thankfully Nadia agreed to wear underwear, since she is stuck on dresses right now. And no coats. What am I going to do when it gets colder??? We had fun, although Nora was sad she couldn’t go down the giant slide all day.

And here are a few other random pictures I found on my phone, several taken by Nora.

Ah, somehow it’s 1:30 already and I’ve accomplished very little today. I guess I better start planning dinner!

Hire Help?

My COVID test was negative. Thank God! 

The girls still have stuffy noses, and… they both have dentist appointments tomorrow which we booked months and months ago. I guess they will go back to school on Monday and we’ll consider this week a wash.

Last night sucked. So bad I feel like maybe hiring help would help. Although I guess we wouldn’t have help overnight, but anything would be better than life now… Here’s how last night went…

  • 8 pm – Both the girls went to sleep
  • 1:13 am – Nora woke crying for me. Why? Who the hell knows. I was tried so of course crawled into bed with her, even though I know I shouldn’t.
  • 2:11 am – Nadia woke crying, which obviously woke Nora too. Nora and I went into Nadia’s room… which led to Nadia wanting to pee and having a meltdown because ‘she felt wet.’ During the meltdown I took Nadia out of her own room, where Nora was still in bed, and Nora eventually fell asleep there.
  • 3:37 am – Nadia and I were still awake and she wanted to pee again, so I took her into Nora’s room and bathroom. Another meltdown over feeling wet.
  • 5:22 am – Finally got Nadia to calm down and sleep with me, in Nora’s bed.
  • 6:07 am – Nora woke in Nadia’s bed and was freaked out, so came into her own room to find Nadia and I, which woke us up for the day.

I need more sleep. We all do. We weren’t sleeping great before school started, and obviously now with Nadia’s numerous daily meltdowns things are much worse. I can’t really depend on Eric, as he gets so little sleep as it is, plus he was on-call last night and awake several times on the phone with the hospital. I often feel like I physically need another body here, another set of hands to take one child while I deal with the other… I know, sounds awful that I can’t calm two kids at once, but the truth is, Nadia overwhelms me and often takes all my attention. Does hiring help sound ridiculous? No clue how much time I would need them here, but often Nadia is melting down just when I need to take Nora to school… I would feel a lot more comfortable and calm knowing someone was here to help.

One day closer

That light up toy may have both helped and hurt. She seemed to like it. Except it turns off after 15 minutes, so if she’s still awake she asks me to turn it back on, or freaks out. F*ck. So much for that.

Nadia has been consistently saying her one ear hurts. So tomorrow morning she is going with me to Nora’s four-year well-child visit to have her ears checked. Ugh, I thought tubes took care of all pain? Nadia did wake at 12:30a, 330a, and 6a for the day last night. Do you find it odd she asked for milk at each of those wakings, and each time drank six oz?

I’m supposed to be packing but spent the past 90 minutes putting together the next MOMS Club Business Meeting agenda. Gag. God, only a couple more months until my role as President is complete!

Okay, onto laundry and packing. If I must. I’m really losing motivation, which is weird cause I thought as the week progressed my anxiety would force my motivation. Maybe it’s more the sleep deprivation.

3 Days

3 days until the movers come. I worked on the lower level today. Although it was easy as lots of stuff down there we aren’t moving just yet, since this move is temporary. For the most part I’d say that level is complete.

I’m sitting in Nadia’s room, waiting for her to fall asleep so I can sneak out. I bought the toy at the link below today. The little part that comes out and glows is occupying her. In fact, I’m sitting slightly out of her view and she doesn’t seem concerned. She’s playing with another doll in her bed right now and talking to herself. Maybe we’re making progress. I won’t hold my breath though. Last night she woke at 1040p, 230a, and 330a. Tonight I was smarter and got Nora to sleep first since she was a freaking bear today! Tonight has to be better! I need some real sleep. I feel like I have a newborn again!

https://www.target.com/p/infantino-gaga-musical-soother-night-light-projector/-/A-75556828

Tomorrow I don’t have anything big planned. Just more packing and laundry since I’m not even sure the girls have outfits for tomorrow.