I feel pretty rotten. I love my 10 month old DD so very much, and she's a pretty agreeable baby. But I am so tired of spending hours of every day trying to get her to sleep or laying with her so she'll stay asleep. I am actually feeling pretty petty - yes, the worst of my problems is that I lay down in bed with my baby for 2-3 hours a day so she can nap. But right now, I feel...overwhelmed. She won't sleep if I just nurse her and leave the bed. She is used to me being next to her. Since this takes up a large portion of the day, everything else that I need to do is about 100 times more stressful because I have a lot less time to do it. My patience with my DD, my self, and my husband is short, and I don't really handle stress well (tend toward depression).
How rotten is this? I feel put upon because my baby wants/needs me with her?! I'm not sure what I'm looking for here, maybe just need to get it off my chest. Does anyone else ever feel like this?
Thanks for listening.
Loving this Mama's life!
DS - planned born via 4/4/2011
I've been there - with both my babies. My second is 10 months old and napping has become a frustration again. It makes me feel totally trapped.
First, I find that when I feel overwhelmed by being with the baby, doing fun things with the baby is as good as being alone. Make some friends who are home with a baby, too, go to a La Leche League meeting or a local playgroup. Check out the "Finding Your Tribe" forum.
Second, will she sleep in a carrier or a stroller? I always wore slim DS1 but I'm enjoying using a stroller with 23-pound DS2. When I'm getting frustrated that he just won't nap, I load him up and go for a walk. I often have time to stop at the coffee shop and read for a bit before he wakes up or do some errands, all while getting some much-needed exercise.
I totally understand! Everybody needs alone time, and especially with an infant who may be sleeping with you, probably needs you through the night, and most of the minutes of every single day.. this is draining! I LOVE to have time alone and when the LOs are little, this is hard. What worked for us is when DH had time, he would take DD out of my bedroom so I could be ALONE for 5 minutes, 30 minutes, 45, an hour.. whatever fit. All of it felt blissful, because I was by myself.
Do you have a laptop, book, smartphone, or something that you can use to make nap time a little more entertaining or useful for you? If you could shoot off a couple of emails or make a list or read something nice then you might either get something done, or at least feel distracted from the millions of other things that you aren't getting done while you are lying down during her nap.
Also, just a thought.. you say she is used to you being there. For me, this kind of thinking turns into the blame game.. why did I let it get to this point, this is my fault, etc. It's easy to think that way because popular thought is that we teach our kids to be bad sleepers. More and more I think that the light sleepers and poor sleepers are dependant on more help, just because that is what they need, not because they learned to love it! If you start to think that you are there because your baby NEEDS you in order to sleep because that is who she is, and not what you've taught her to want, then this may also help you feel more positive about the situation. IDK, just my two cents!