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Momsomnia

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1525443_10103044125634747_2100788744161965965_n*Written in 2012 and still very relevant! Pictured are my gorgeous daughter and sweet grand baby, both sleeping like I wish I could.

My personal definition of Momsomnia is not being able to sleep when you should because
your brain won’t be quiet and having to hold your eye lids open with toothpicks when you
have to be awake.

Even as I write this, the baby is napping and I am dying to close my eyes. A nap sounds
glorious, to crawl under the covers, lay my head on a cool pillow ….mmm. No! Wait! Must
wake up! It’s not just because the little one is sleeping and the house is quiet. This is the
song the voice in my head sings a hundred times a day. Maybe more. My teenage
daughter just LOVES it when she asks me a question and I am so tired, I just stare at her
with a blank face like I have been frozen in time. It’s a total role reversal when she yells,
“MOM! I’M TALKING TO YOU!” Sorry, Love. Or when I have to make myself NOT sit down for
a while  because I know in that minute, if I sit down and no one lets me go to sleep, I am
going to turn into a 3 year old throwing a tantrum. But when the kids are in bed, the sun
has gone to bed, and nobody needs me RIGHT NOW, I have other things I “just have to
do”. The thought of going to sleep isn’t quite as urgent. Oh wait, that show I wanted to
watch is on. Did I lock the doors? I need to do just a few things on the computer, check
Facebook, check my e-mail, etc. Oooooh! Feevo! Or Bejeweled Blitz. Okay, wait! MUST get
in bed.

But it doesn’t end there. Once in bed, the hubby is watching TV or snoring, both equally
non-conducive to my sleep. When my head hits the pillow, I can hear my brain crank up it’s
engine and hit the gas. Replay the day. Think about tomorrow. The weekend. The kids.
The diet (that I’m not on.) The exercise I should be doing. I really should paint my toe nails
and shave my legs. Or I should really paint the kids’ bedrooms. What colors would look
good? The schedule I should create for myself which would include that diet and exercise
program I haven’t quite gotten the hang of. Ideas for the company. Art projects for the little
one. I’m very ambitious at midnight! And 2 am. And then I am so lucky! I get the added joy
of super vivid, crazy dreams so my brain feels like it doesn’t get any rest even while I’m
sleeping. Even if you don’t have the wild sleep, you get it. So the next day, the cycle
continues. Day after day. Okay so every once in a while, I’m not daydreaming of sleep. Still,
95% of the  time when someone asks me how I am, I think “TIRED!!”

So, what’s a girl to do? First, check with your doctor. It may be your thyroid, a vitamin
deficiency, some medicine you’re on. I know part of my problem is the meds I am on, but I
am on thyroid meds or else I would be catatonic. And I’d rather be a little tired than ride the
express crazy train. My slow moving crazy train is just fine.

Second, try the tips from the National Sleep Foundation.
At night:

  • Use the bed and bedroom for sleep and sex only
  • Establish a regular bedtime routine and a regular sleep-wake schedule
  • Do not eat or drink too much close to bedtime
  • Create a sleep-promoting environment that is dark, cool and comfortable
  • Avoid disturbing noises – consider a bedside fan or white-noise machine to  block
    out disturbing sounds


During the day:

  • Consume less or no caffeine, particularly late in the day
  • Avoid alcohol and nicotine, especially close to bedtime
  • Exercise, but not within three hours before bedtime
  • Avoid naps, particularly in the late afternoon or evening
  • Keep a sleep diary to identify your sleep habits and patterns that you can share
    with your doctor


Third, try my theory. It’s do as I say not as I do 🙂 Once everyone is in bed, give yourself a set
time to limit to do “stuff”. Say, thirty minutes on the computer, one TV show, one quick walk
around the house to make sure the doors are locked, whatever works for you but stick to a
time limit and include five minutes to write down everything racing in your brain. After that,
cut off all the electronics and set a block of time to switch from mom to woman. Do
something that doesn’t require brain power and is JUST for you. Soak in a hot bath with a
glass of wine, paint your toes, and wind down. Lather up in your favorite lotion, put on your
cozy, cozy pjs and crawl in to bed. My theory is this routine of emptying your brain and
winding down will get you in to sleep mode and it will be smooth sailing.

If you have a little one that wakes up in the night, remember to keep all the lights as low as
possible and be as quiet as possible. It will help you both fall back asleep faster.

I hope that some combo of these ideas will help you get some GOOD sleep!

Let me know how it’s going. I love hearing from all of you 🙂 Sweet dreams!!

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