I gave up on my relationship with sleep a long time ago. It never would have worked out between us anyways. I’m a night-owl and an early riser. It would wind up being more of a long distance relationship anyway.
Bex, on the other hand, really loves her sleep. I think her secret life goal is to be one of those Disney princesses that just lays around napping until her prince shows up. As soon as he does, she springs up with make-up already done, and hair perfectly curled. The Prince thinks she’s dolled up for him, but truthfully, her real relationship is with sleep. I don’t mind sharing. Sleep makes my wife happy again after I’ve done my best to piss her off.
When Luke was born, that was the beginning of the end for our relationship with sleep. Plenty of people tried to warn us. Sleep now, while you can. Then when he was born they said. Sleep when he sleeps. But we didn’t listen.
The first couple weeks were great. Ah he sleeps like an angel. We would laugh. It’s easy! He’s in a routine: eat, activity, sleep. But now, after a month and a half of being an angel, Luke has developed a severe case of F.O.M.O (fear of missing out).
He starts to drink a bottle but passes out half-way through. This kid is seriously snoring on my shoulder. So, I swaddle him up and lay him down in the crib. Not ten minutes later I can hear him screaming his head off! I think something is wrong so I race in there to save the day. After all, I am the IncrediDad. I swoop in, scoop him up. Immediately, he stops crying and a huge grin spreads across his face. Wasn’t that fun Daddy? Look what I made you do.
With all the attention that Luke commands, Bex was forced to let her relationship with sleep suffer. Like any spurned lover sleep wasn’t too happy about this. It was an “us or them” situation. Luckily for Luke and I, sleep walked out on us before Bex had time to make up her mind.
Now that the other guy, the one who makes my wife happy when I screw up, is gone, there’s no one around to pick up my slack. Sometimes Bex will get up in the middle of the night and “let me sleep,” but the volume of Luke’s cries combined with his penchant for temper tantrums makes this generous offer pretty useless.
Picture it, four a.m. and all is peaceful and quiet, that is, until the baby starts to cry. Bex goes to his rescue and starts to breastfeed. I roll over and go back to sleep. What seems like mere seconds later, he’s crying again, harder, at the top of his lungs.
W-What’s wrong? I stammer as I try to shake the sleep off. Did the dog bite him?
At this point, Bex has tagged out and gone back to sleep. I’m left on my own to decipher the baby’s cries. My entire month of experience has told me that its one of two things at this age; wet diaper or hunger. Since he just sampled the boob, I think maybe he needs to be changed. Alright, I can sleepwalk my way through that one. Of course Luke just lies there sleeping, crying, or cooing, not even offering to help. And when we are all done, I stand there hoping he will fall back asleep but of course, he’s wide awake. Soon the tears start up again. How are you still hungry? I ask him. Where do you pack it all away? He answers me with the loudest juiciest fart you’ve ever heard.
So we’re tired and grouchy all the time. Even complaining about how tired we are exhausts me. You know what? Excuse me, I need to lay down for a nap. Watch the baby for me, will ya?