ten o’clock an all’s well!


Good morning!  Well, here I am… flying solo.  Elliott is back at work and this is the first day of my first week as a mama alone at home with two babies.

Friday was actually my first solo day, and I would not call it successful.  Lena threw the temper tantrum of the decade, Gil fussed a lot of the day, we spent a good 5 minutes all bawling together at some point in there, and I might have sent a “mayday!” message to Elliott sometime around… oh… 2pm.

So far today has already been better.  We’ve missed Elliott this morning, but we have survived.  Breakfast, playtime, and nap time have happened without drama.  I even managed to wash the dishes after breakfast (which, as you know, I have given up doing with two babies unless all the stars align).  We have some friends coming later for a play date, my friend Jen is dropping off dinner, and all in all… we have a lot to be thankful for on this first day of our first solo week.

Well, okay, Lena is currently calling “Mama… Mama…” instead of actually napping, Gil is due to wake up any moment, there are toys all over the living room, and I’ve misplaced my cup of coffee somewhere in the chaos but… you know.  Perspective!  Attitude!

I will admit that this day is a welcome relief from the whole weekend, which was not so pleasant.  I’ve had a bad cold and so have been foggily stumbling through the weekend with a dripping nose and dull headache.  We didn’t sleep much at all on Friday night until around 3:30am Elliott asked me to go sleep on the daybed in Lena’s room in order to at least sleep for a few hours.  I don’t like the idea of sleeping in different rooms, or of sleeping away from our baby, though.  We both agree that we want this to be as temporary a solution as possible.

What did you do in order to sleep when you — or your friends or family — had a newborn?  Any tips you can pass along?

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14 Responses to ten o’clock an all’s well!

  1. Tiffany February 11, 2013 at 1:55 pm #

    You can do it! Good luck with the sleep! Our little one was an outstanding sleeper…until about six months old. So it will be interesting to see how #2 does. I look forward to any tips from more experienced moms!

  2. Alise February 11, 2013 at 2:15 pm #

    Wow! New reader here. Thank you for being so honest about those first weeks with a newborn. I just had my first baby seven weeks ago. We’re looking forward to having more babies, but I can’t imagine all the sleep deprivation plus a toddler! Way to go! We honesty can’t sleep with her in the same room. I tried for about a week but I wasn’t getting any sleep; her baby noises kept me on edge every minute. Also we didn’t realize how much swaddling helped, but you know that already. :) thank you for your blog, I love having other people to walk through newbornood with.

  3. OM February 11, 2013 at 3:53 pm #

    For me, the only way I’d get any sleep was with Oath in bed with me. If I hadn’t him on my chest or nested against me, I couldn’t fall asleep at all! Granted, it wasn’t good quality sleep, but it was better than trying to put him in his cot (that is, the few times he did not start crying his lungs off as soon as we put him there) and stay awake, turning and tossing, for hours. Every mom and baby is unique, though, and I hope you find the way that works best for the four of you soon.
    Now, if I had two of them, I don’t know what would I do! Just with one I am still scrambling to find the way to survive my days!

  4. Shelly February 11, 2013 at 4:44 pm #

    I appreciated your honesty about your day. I would have cried uncle too. It is real life unfolding in a broken world, isn’t it? Love it. Keep up the soulful writing. I read an article last night in weekend edition of the Wall Street Journal where parents had re-engineered their family life according to business principles. This was there response to dealing with a chaotic brood of four kids.
    Lord, in your mercy…..

    I’m also humored by the cats placement at the breakfast table alongside Lena. An all too familiar sight…..

  5. Heather Miller February 11, 2013 at 4:51 pm #

    Sweet Becca, you’re doing a fabulous job! All 3 of our “infant days” have looked different, and all have been impossibly daunting and honestly downright ugly some days. I can’t tell you how many “mayday” texts I’ve sent to my husband or warnings that we’ll all be bawling when he walks through the door. If I got one extra thing done in a day (besides changing diapers and filling bellies) I counted that day a major success. Be sure to take care of yourself. Give yourself breaks when you can, actual breaks. When Lena is asleep, put the baby down, even just for 10 minutes and do something, anything, that’s just for you. Nights are rough and we’ve tried it all with varying degrees of success and sleep. Every day is another day closer to your new normal. We’re still (3 months into our third little one) trying to figure out what our new normal will look like. Grace, grace, grace to you in abundance.

  6. Liz February 11, 2013 at 6:27 pm #

    I have a 2 year old and a 4 month old….all I can say is it gradually gets better. I already look back at the early days with #2 and think gosh sleep is so much better now than it was then! (Not to say it’s ‘great’ yet but we’re getting there!) Five days after delivery with my second I was down and out with an infection in the lining of my uterus – doubled over in pain with a 102 fever. Less than 2 months later I got the flu which turned into strep throat! Sickness seems to come on more with two little ones. Just keep pushing through and before you know it you’ll be looking back saying wow, I survived! I love following your blog by the way. :)

  7. Lucy February 11, 2013 at 9:31 pm #

    This makes me all the more eager to come! I can hardly wait as it is! I can play dolls and ABCs with Lena, read books, cuddle Gil, clean the breakfast dishes, and love you:)

  8. Anne February 11, 2013 at 10:34 pm #

    As a mother of five, I will assure you that it DOES get better and it DOES get easier. The first six to eight weeks are a total blur of survival mode, so just do whatever you need to to get through. Another thing that I had to learn when my second baby arrived is (and you’ll appreciate this as a nurse): triage. When both kids NEED you at the same time, you have to decide which one is most important and do that first. For example: older child has a boo boo, baby needs to nurse. Nursing will take a little time but the boo boo just needs a quick band-aid so do that first then sit down to nurse the baby. If the baby cries for a few minutes while you help Lena on the potty or something like that, he’ll be ok. Similarly, Lena will get to learn patience and empathy for her little brother by having to wait for something she wants/needs. You’re doing a good job! One day at a time!

  9. Anonymous February 12, 2013 at 1:19 am #

    I think Anne said it well. Everybody has to learn patience and to take turns. Mama can’t do everything at the same time :o) Let the laundry and dishes go, and just keep your nose above the water. I always had my babies sleep in a bassinet next to my bed so I could get comfortable without worrying about the baby falling off the bed or getting squished, but every family feels differently about sleeping arrangements. My husband is adamantly opposed to children in our bed. I think Jane got “kicked out” of our room at around 10 days old because she was too noisy. :oP As for transitioning to two kids, it really helped Jane to have a new toy to play with ONLY while I was nursing, because that’s when she struggled the very most. It gave her something to look forward to, rather than be jealous about. It will all get easier in a month or two. It takes a little time to find your new groove :o) Think of it as an accomplishment and a success if when your hubby comes home you can proudly say, “I kept the kids alive today!” Woo hoo! Celebrate the little things, laugh along the way and enjoy all those sweet baby cuddles!!

  10. Jenny Montgomery February 12, 2013 at 1:22 am #

    Sorry, didn’t mean for my comment above to come up as anonymous :)

  11. Rachel February 12, 2013 at 3:12 am #

    I hear you, girl! You’ve already got a lot of great advice out there. With #3 at 5 months old, I am constantly astonished at how much I can get done on so little sleep. My older girls did not sleep through the night until they were over a year, so I have adjusted my expectations a bit (though that doesn’t keep me from getting bitter once in a while). It has been helpful to me to remember the grace of God that we don’t have to get everything perfect at any one time (or really anything perfect ever), but He is perfect for us. It’s okay to have those moments of meltdown on the floor and SOS calls to Elliott – in fact those might be good reminders that we can’t do it on our own. A lot more thoughts on this, but will leave it for another time. Praying for you. All four of you.

  12. Emily R-C February 12, 2013 at 3:41 am #

    I definitely want to have kids some day, but the sleeplessness is a bit scary. No helpful hints here, but good vibes being sent your way from Connecticut.

  13. Meg February 12, 2013 at 4:27 am #

    Here are my best shots at how to get any sleep or really rest with babies: First, take new baby to bed with you. I know you already do that, but I did not learn about it until reading the life-changing book (for us) The Family Bed. Second, I stopped noting the time when I was awakened to nurse, change, or sit up with a wakeful baby. It’s just better NOT to know how much sleep you’re not getting. Then it’s much easier to pretend that you had enough. When I had the twins, I felt pretty good if I’d had 4 hours of interrupted sleep in any given night time. Love you all lots…Marmee :)

  14. Kim February 12, 2013 at 4:34 am #

    Oh the individual days are sometimes long, but the years go by soooo fast. My sweet baby girl will graduate this year. Enjoy the cuddles and hugs and endless days spent reading. The dishes will wait. Nap when they nap. Be flexible. With 3 little ones I always felt like just when we got the schedule down, it changed. Someone dropped a morning nap, or started potty training or started homeschool. They don’t need a perfect house and a perfect mom. Just a mama and daddy who love each other, love them and love the Lord! Good luck!

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