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WOW. I could have written your post word for word a few months ago. Actually, I'm pretty sure I did.

Zoe was/is(?) very high needs and my entire day consisted of getting her to sleep and keeping her to sleep. She slept so poorly that she was overtired and miserable the entire time she was awake. I also have a 2-year old who spent a whole lot of time watching Noggin and getting fussed at by me. I was consumed with guilt about how our difficulty was Zoe was affecting him -- so much so that we resorted to trying CIO with Zoe, in hopes of helping us be better parents to Ean. CIO didn't work and we stopped after a week or so. It was a *very* difficult time for all of us. I was miserable, crabby, irritable, and resentful. I was having thoughts of going outside and walking in front of a car -- not because I wanted to die, but because I needed some time off and a few weeks in the hospital seemed like a vacation compared to what I was living at home.

I eventually realized that I needed some help. I saw a doctor (psychiatrist) and got diagnosed with PPD (no surprise) and started a course of zoloft. I've been on it about a month and I feel like a different person (actually, I feel like myself again). I've also started to look for ways to take a little time for myself -- I started seeing a therapist, which forces me to spend 90 minutes each week away from the house/kids. I realized that it HAS to be OK to leave the kids with Rich for a little while, so I can get out and recharge. Some mommas here might not agree with me, but I think it's OK to leave a clean, dry, fed baby with daddy -- even if he cries about. Dad can hold, walk, rock a crying baby. Crying in-arms is not the same as CIO -- and the arms don't always have to be mom's.

The other thing that happened is that Zoe has gradually gotten a bit easier (she almost 8 months). She's never taken a bottle, but she's now eating some solids. We're back to co-sleeping -- I don't love it, but she's at least sleeping and not nursing all night. I've found that she'll stay asleep for naps if I keep her in the boppy and set her on the couch. She's also starting to be able to spend more time awake -- she used to be ready to go to sleep after about 2 to 2.5 hours of awake time, now she spends up to 5 hours awake before getting tired. As a result, I think she's consolidating her sleep as well. I never, ever, ever thought things would get better -- but they are!!!

BIG, BIG HUGS to you. Please do some things to take care of yourself and know that it won't be like this forever.

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