Living Columns & Blogs

Help out a friend…

One of the nice things about getting up and going to work everyday is co-workers.

It is always nice when you work with great people. There are days (like this morning) when my son is whining, "It isn't a school day again is it?" and it is dreary and gray (again) and my pajamas are far too comfy that I find myself chugging along in the morning not pushing too hard after a rough night with kids who refuse to sleep that I think how nice it would be to stay home.

One of the things that gets me going on those mornings is knowing I get to go in and work with great people who aren't just great co-workers, but friends, too. And one thing I love is hearing stories of their kids, too.

This morning, I was in my office when a friend came by. He asked me how you possibly convince a 3-year-old that he can actually pull his own blanket up and cover himself umpteen times in the middle of the night instead of beckoning (or screaming for) his slaves (or parents) to help him. OK, so he didn't use those words. But I could relate.

My family seems to have sleep issues. Not me. I sleep easy. I fall asleep, and if it weren't for the rest of my family, I would sleep 9 hours each night.

My family, on the other hand...

My husband is one of those people with insomnia. He can't get to sleep, and once he does we hope nothing wakes him because he won't be able to get back to sleep once awakened. He very generously passed sleep issues onto our kids. I envy those people who tell me their kids were sleeping through the night from 4 months old. I envy them and also wonder how they sleep at night telling these fibs -- kids don't actually do this do they? OK, I tell myself that to make me feel better since my daughter is almost 2 years old and I can count the number of times she has slept through the night on my fingers.

My son was actually worse, though. By the time he was this age, he had never slept through the night. I finally quit telling people this and resorted to just smiling and nodding when talk went to sleeping kids because I got so tired of the advice -- cry it out, don't cry it out, is he hungry, is it nightmares, Ferberize (which I have been told is not the same as crying it out), The Sleep Lady, the No-Cry Sleep Solution... the list went on and on.

I finally came to accept it was just my husband's fault. Then one day, my son started sleeping through the night. What I did learn from this which I can apply to my daughter is that one day it will happen. One day I will blink my eyes and she won't be my (semi-) sweet little baby anymore and she will be a little girl who sleeps through the night.

Anyways, my rambling here isn't helping my co-worker/friend. Basically, as he was telling me his dilemma, my response was something like, "My kids are sucky sleepers, and I have no real advice for you," even though in my head I was thinking "Duct tape?" (For the blanket, not the child!!)

So help out my co-worker -- aside from talking to his little boy about it the next day and how easy it really is to pull your own blankie up (because he has done that), how would you handle this?

And of course anyone who can relate to having sleeping-opposed children should also post and let me know I am not the only one. Those of you with children who slept through the night from 4 months on should probably not say anything lest you risk the wrath of those of us on the other side of the fence.

Kidding, of course.