A Bowlful of Cherries

Celebrating Matty and Noah

Sleep, precious sleep…

I want to get a tape recorder and tape one of [Matty’s] loud, fussy screaming jags. Then I’ll save the tape until [he’s] fifteen. Then, late one night, I’ll sneak into [his] room, play the tape at full volume, blast [his] ass out of bed, and scream, “How do YOU like it?”
   ~The Story about the Baby

OK, not really. Matty is pretty well behaved, although we buy a few minutes with a pacifier. If we pick him up and rock him, he’ll usually fall asleep or go into one of those ‘quiet alert’ phases where I feel pressured to nurture his intellect, usually by chanting the names of the 50 states alphabetically (great parlor trick). But he’s never cried and cried and cried. At least, not that I know of.

The difficult part is that he doesn’t yet sleep solidly through the night, and he won’t sleep in his crib. If we’re not there to rock him or wedge him between our bodies and the back of the couch, he’s off to the Crytown Races (awright, that was a bad one).

Donna and I started staggering our sleeping schedule (will we ever sleep together again?). She takes care of Matty from 9 or 10p to 3a, when I’ll wake up and take over. Usually, Donna’s done such a great job, ‘taking over’ means sending Donna to bed and falling asleep on the couch with Matty. At 6a, I’ll hand him off and get ready for work. For me, the schedule works well. Whenever Matty gets the least bit fussy while I’m up with him, I stuff a bottle in his mouth and wait for his eyes to cross. I get some sleep, useful for work.

For Donna, the schedule is merely a brief respite. All too brief, but still better than both of us tearing our hair out. Sleeping on the couch isn’t a joy, and Donna still has the various aches from popping Matty out in the first place. She tries to make up for the nights by grabbing a few winks during the day, but that kind of sleep is the fitful kind, an hour here, a half-hour there, in between breathing checks and diaper runs and bottle disinfections and …. Kind people chuckle knowingly and tell us to, “Sleep when he sleeps,” but it’s not that easy.

Donna asked me the other day if I thought I could handle Matty, by myself, all day long. My answer, which surprised me, was, “Of c- … uh … ooohh … well … hem.” It really is a job, and unlike mine, she can’t punch in the clock. I do what I can when I’m home (or awake), but Donna’s doing a fantastic job. If Matty grows up to be a useful contributer to society, it’s to her credit.


Written by Michael

14 Jun 2004 at 858am

Posted in Misc.

One Response

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  1. Aha! Photographic evidence that his belly is expanding like the Universe!


    10 Jun 2004 at 1133am

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