Tuesday, October 27, 2009
All about sleeping
Having been away for a week in New York, rushing around doing lots of fun things, all I felt like doing this weekend just gone was staying at home and chilling.
Unfortunately, my daughter had other plans for us all (as children do!). She has most of her teeth now but teething has had little impact on her good, deep, night time sleep thus far. But now the poor little thing is teething one set of her big molars, so she was wide awake screaming at 5am on Saturday and was inconsolable (immune to cuddling, Calpol and sleeping in our bed). So that's when the day started for us.
In truth it was fine because she is such a delight and we knew we could all catch up on sleep later in the day. However, the early start meant a very stressful morning as she wasn't ready to nap but at the same time was extremely cranky so not much chilling got done. She finally napped (as did we) for an hour or so after lunch. Thereafter, fully rested, she was a dream child - happy, playing, rested, chilled. The afternoon turned out to be wonderful.
She woke up screaming at 4am on Sunday, but thankfully went back to sleep within minutes of me giving her some magic potion (= Calpol!). Then she slept on another few hours. Consequently, Sunday was wonderful for all of us as she was fully rested. We simply played with her all day long. And in the afternoon, after her post-lunch nap, my mum came to visit her. My mum also bought M and I dinner for that night - homecooked chana dal curry and cauliflower curry. So delicious that we had to eat it again on Monday night (rather than freezing).
Honestly, life with my daughter is just so much fun (much more fun than when she was a baby). She's got a cracking sense of humour, laughs all the time, chatters away non-stops and her vocabulary is growing by the day. She can point to things and correctly name them eg leaves, trees, cars, bin, bib, books, flowers - she pointed to a buttercup in our garden and said, "Flower!" and then she pointed to a nasturtium and also identified it as a "Flower!"... She saw a photo of a boy and said, "Boy!", and she saw both her Grandmothers in a photo and she exclaimed, "Gramma!" It was particularly sweet when we were leafing through a photo album together and we came across a photo of the three of us together. She pointed to the image of M and exclaimed, "Daddy!", she pointed to the image of me and said, "Mummy!" and then she stopped at the image of herself and hesitated, really staring at it. M said, "Who's that?" And she replied, "Baby!"
She also now enjoys pointing to animals and imitating the sounds they make: "Woof woof" when she sees a dog, "Squeak, squeak" when she sees a mouse, "rrrbit, rrrbit" when she sees a frog, "meeeooow" for a cat... When she sees a lion, she flings her arms back, thrusts out her face, opens her mouth wide and really roars!
She loves dancing to music - she stomps her feet and shakes her body and flaps her arms around. The other day I caught her trying to imitate a woman doing a yoga pose on TV (the tree pose, incidentally). She also enjoys pretending to read - she'll open a book up and look at the words and babble away as if she is reciting a nursery rhyme (sing song style) then turn the page over and repeat. It's very endearing.
Life is more difficult too. As a baby, she was far more mobile - we could, generally, take her anywhere. But now she has a mind of her own. If she's decided she doesn't want to be somewhere, she makes her feelings known loudly. If she doesn't want to eat or do something then she will emphatically say (or shout, or cry) "No!" and turn away. We don't push her too much if she doesn't want to do something. I recognise that at the moment she cannot be reasoned with so I have little choice but to go with the flow. Going with the flow is a learning experience for me!
She also really fights going to sleep in the buggy when we are out and about - there is too much for her to see and do and she doesn't want to miss out on all the fun. It means we can no longer go out for longer than a couple of hours at a time before she is beside herself with tiredness but refusing to nap and so is hysterical. It's okay. It's just a phase. Eventually her stamina will build and she will no longer need to nap anyway.
Sunday afternoon ended with M carving out a happy Halloween pumpkin for Little Planet (photo above). We lit it and switched off all the lights. We kept switching the lights on and off because she was so excited by it all - she was literally shaking with excitement.
Sunday night was a little better for her and us in terms of sleep. She is usually a deep sleeper at night (a light sleeper during the day) and regular readers of this blog know that she started to sleep through the night from 12 weeks old (generally 7 to 7 or 7 to 6.30). But teething makes her night sleep much lighter and more broken, so on Sunday night she was roused from her sleep just by M and I going to bed at 11pm. She cried for a minute and then went back to sleep so we didn't need to go into her. She also cried out at 2am in the morning but fortunately went back to sleep after a minute so again I didn't need to go to her. Unfortunately I was, then, wide awake and it took me an hour to get back to sleep!