Shattered and defeated I called for back up, I tagged in my wingman (Joe) and let him take over. I collapsed on the sofa tears of defeat, streaming down my cheeks, questioning my parenting ability and so deeply desperate for some answers.
My toddler had broken me.
For the past 3 weeks we haven't had a single full nights sleep and it is taking its toll on us. Our regular self soothing son has began to refuse to settle without one of us with him and has tried every trick in the book not to go to bed.
We have attempted to get him to settle himself by using the Supernanny approach mentioned above, resulting in lots of screaming and climbing out of bed every few seconds for hours on end. I have had him tell me he doesn't like his bed, there are spiders in it, he doesn't like it because it is blue, Mummy should sleep in his bed, Daddy should sleep in his bed, Zack and Quack are in his bed (Nick Jr Characters), he needs milk, he has no socks on and so on and so forth!
We have had to give in most nights and stroke his head until he finally falls to sleep and sometimes just let him get into our bed so that we could all get a small amount of rest. Unfortunately, I know this has left him not knowing where he stands or what the rules are.
Bedtime isn't the only issue though as he is waking every night despite being warm, having a nightlight and having enough food and drink before bed (etc..etc). We just can't work out what has changed for him that has thrown his routine out.
Joe is soldiering on but I have been an emotional wreck. My latest YouTube video almost feels like a cry for help after the lack of sleep got a bit too much. I have been in tears most nights and totally at a loss as to what to do to help Ted settle. I know the past month has seen Ted have 2 sickness bugs and a weekend away but the sleepless nights started before any of them so I can't see them as triggers but could they be contributing factors?
He has also started to drop his daytime naps which made me wonder if he was overtired but I can't force him to sleep in the day despite my best efforts and the bedtimes aren't any better on days when he does get a nap in.
We have an appointment with the health visitor next week to discuss sleep problems as well as his development update so we will have to see how that goes. In the mean time we are just going to have to battle on.
I never realised how much Sleep Deprivation can actually affect your body and mind. I feel like a Zombie most days, more so than when he was a newborn and I struggle to carry out even the simplest of tasks. I have lost so many things lately and forgotten appointments etc. Work are so sympathetic so I am lucky with that and am able to just get on with things at my own pace but it is so difficult. I strangely find the days at work a break away as opposed to days of battling with toddler tantrums and generally looking after a 2 year old on a few hours sleep.
Fingers and toes crossed that things get easier and I welcome any advice anyone may have!