Sunday, May 15, 2011

Hey jealousy

Everyone in the house other than me is sleeping. I should be sleeping, too, theoretically, but this morning Eric let me sleep in until 9:30, which gave me something like a reasonable amount of sleep (after eleven hours of trying. Part of the problem is that I forgot to put Maia in a nightgown for bed, and also decided to be serious about putting her in the bassinet rather than with me, so when she unwrapped herself from her blankets she was cold) (also, she's currently happily asleep in the crib but tends to go down hard in the bassinet. Maybe it's just not comfortable enough?), and I don't get these alone moments often. Perhaps I should be doing something with this one other than being online? Oh well.

Chloë is becoming shorter and shorter of sleep. She routinely wakes up between six and six-thirty in the mornings, and her naps have been shortening from two hours to between one and one and a half. Sending her to bed later hasn't helped, so we're going to try earlier in the hopes that she'll at least be better rested, if not any later in rising.

She's whinier and shorter-tempered than she used to be, though I can't say for sure whether that's from the lack of sleep or the jealousy. Last night Eric said to her, after pulling her off of me so she wouldn't continue to trample my feet and climb on my legs and pull pillows down on me while I was nursing Maia, "I know you're jealous." She repeated anxiously "Chloë jealous? Chloë jealous?" and rubbed her nose, as she does when she thinks she's got another nosebleed (she's had several lately). Eric told her, "Jealous is a feeling, like happy or sad," but she kept repeating and rubbing. I told her "Jealous has nothing to do with your nose," but I'm not sure she understood.

She does continue to like to look at Maia, and kiss her head or investigate her fingers, but I'm not convinced that this isn't partly because we praise her for doing so. I don't suppose that's entirely a bad thing, though. I have to interrupt my time with her so often to go pick up Maia or nurse her, and I'd hate it too if I were Chloë. Heck, I don't like it myself. Last night after a midnight feeding I sat up a while to rock Maia to sleep, and after some creepy-looking eye-opening and shutting with only her whites shutting and lots of limb twitching, she woke up and wanted to nurse again. I put her down and went downstairs to where Eric was working on grading to complain. "Why am I so much more impatient the second time around?" I wondered.

"I think it's because last time you had PPD, and your brain wouldn't let you go in that direction," Eric said.

"Well, which one's better?" I grumbled. Maia had been crying all this time, and I started hearing some blanket-rustling that wasn't her, so I started back up the steps, saying, "I better go get her before the daughter I actually like wakes up." Which is not to say I don't like Maia. I'm finding myself much more fond of her than I was of Chloë at this age--again, probably due to the PPD that time and the lack of it this time. But at one in the morning when I think I'm fully due a simple hour of sleep and being denied it, I'm not much better than a nearly-two-year-old who just wants some time with her mama.

I want some time with my oldest daughter, too. (And also my pillow. Pity Chloë won't sleep with me. She says she wants to when I try to take a nap, but her "Chloë sleep" really means "Chloë lay down by Mama and pull the blankets away from her and chatter incessantly and, if the chatter gets no response, poke at her.") I'm not seeing how to get it yet, much, since Maia nurses mostly every 1.75 hours, but I'm going to try. And we're going to try to get Chloë more sleep, and if possible, some patience. And keep on going.

No comments: